Sunday, August 20, 2017

Political Leaders Turn Up Heat on MCN

Lieutenant Governor Mike Parson and Senate leaders Ron Richard and Mike Kehoe announced that unless Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal resigned they would begin proceeding to have her removed from the Senate during Veto Session.

Governor Eric Greitens agreed.

Greitens statement: "Senator Chappelle-Nadal said she hopes the President is killed. Republicans and Democrats have called on her to resign. Her response: "Hell no." Last night, in an interview, she refused to apologize—twice.  If she will not resign, the Senate can vote to remove her. I believe they should."

On the other side, there’s a “support” Chappelle-Nadal website up.  See it here.  It says, “We know that there is a huge difference between saying that someone hopes Donald Trump is assassinated and someone calling for his assassination.”  A better strategy than splitting hairs over assassination rhetoric talk would be a genuine, contrite apology.


About Expulsion

The Post-Dispatch article (see it here) says that it can’t be done as part of Veto Session but would require a special session.

One MOScout reader: It is expulsion, not impeachment.  It is pursuant to Article III Section 18.  Unlike impeachment there is basically nothing in the constitution about how to proceed.  One way would be start with a resolution and have a hearing, but it’s not clear that’s required.

Another one sent in this history:  In 1945, the disciplinary action to expel Sen. Joseph Falzone included (1) a committee to investigate charges made and gather evidence, including the power to subpoena witnesses and require the production of documents; (2) a second committee to prepare and file charges and formulate rules of procedure and prepare for a proper hearing, (3) a hearing before the entire membership of the Senate on the charges, where Sen. Falzone was authorized to employ legal counsel to be paid by the Senate, the Senate employed attorneys to prosecute the charges, the President of the Senate would preside and rule on all questions regarding the admission or rejection of evidence, and rules of evidence would apply.

Incidentally, one of the attorneys representing the Senate was Mark D. Eagleton, of St. Louis, father of U. S. Senator Eagleton.  Charles E. Rendlen, of Hannibal, and Waldo Edwards, of Macon (later a Republican circuit judge), served as counsel for Senator Falzone.


Expulsion Count

Sens. Mike Cunningham, Doug Libla, and Brian Munzlinger all issued statements that appear to put them in the expulsion camp.  Sen. Paul Wieland’s statement stopped short.  But my informal survey of building denizens makes it sound like there’s 2/3 votes to expel.  If it comes to that.   One lobbyist explained that it’s hard to argue that she should resign because she’s not fit to hold office, and then not vote to expel her because she’s unfit.   Minority Leader Gina Walsh, Senator Claire McCaskill and Party Chair Stephen Webber all are on the record saying she should go.  That gives Republicans and Democrats alike a lot of political cover.


Why MCN Might Resign

One observer thinks if it the vote looks like it is going to happen, and Chappelle-Nadal senses she could lose it, it’s in her interest to resign… and keep her pension.

From Article XIII, Section 3: 12. Beginning January 1, 2007, any public official subject to this provision who is convicted in any court of a felony which occurred while in office or who has been removed from office for misconduct or following impeachment shall be disqualified from receiving any pension from the state of Missouri.


MOScout Weekly Poll – Statewide Questions

See the full results here.


Q1: Do you approve or disapprove of Donald Trump’s job performance as President of the United States?

Approve: 48%

Disapprove: 45%

Not sure: 7%


Q2: Possible candidates in the 2018 General Election for United States Senate are the Republican Josh Hawley and the Democrat Claire McCaskill. If the election were held today, for whom would you vote?

Josh Hawley: 50%

Claire McCaskill: 45%

Undecided: 5%


Q3: Possible candidates in the 2018 General Election for Missouri State Auditor are the Republican Todd Richardson and the Democrat Nicole Galloway. If the election were held today, for whom would you vote?

Todd Richardson: 47%

Nicole Galloway: 43%

Undecided: 10%


Q4: There is a new law in Missouri known as Right to Work. This law (1) prohibits as a condition of employment membership in, or payments of dues or fees in full or in part to, a labor organization (union); (2) makes any agreement or activity violating its provisions illegal and ineffective; and (3) allows legal remedies for anyone injured as a result of violations or threats of violations of its provisions. Do you support or oppose the law known as Right to Work?

Support: 40%

Oppose: 42%

Not sure: 18%


Trump MO Approval

This poll happened after one of the worst weeks of Trump’s presidency.  His talk of how there were some “very fine people” at the neo-Nazi rally brought bi-partisan rebuke.  Yet his Missouri approval rating is still positive.  It has, though, been eroding month after month since it’s high-point in March.

Trump Approval in MOScout Polls (approve/disapprove/not sure)

February 2 poll: 47/43/10          (+4)

March 4 poll: 54/41/5                (+13)

May 20 poll: 51/42/7                 (+9)

June 9 poll: 51/45/4                   (+6)

July 30 poll: 50/46/4                  (+4)

August 18 poll: 48/46/7             (+2)


House GOP Summer Caucus Bits

Members of the House senior-class will not be voting in the upcoming Speaker-Elect election at Veto Session.  Put that into your vote models….


Rep. Justin Alferman raised $20,000 for HRCC by agreeing to shave his head.


Rep. Rocky Miller withdrew from the Floor Leader race.  See his statement here.  Rep. Rob Vescovo’s statement in response: "I was surprised to see Rocky leave the race today; he is a good man, and he pushed me to work harder.  Like most of my colleagues, Rocky works hard outside the Capitol, too, and his business is growing because of it.  He exemplifies the tremendous depth of talent and character we have in the Missouri House."

Team Vescovo said it helped their total… “Many of his voters really liked Rob and had him as their second choice.”


And Vescovo’s rival for that spot got some props with one observer noting that Rep. Kirk Mathews first out of the gate to “request Chappelle-Nadal's resignation, which quickly put the Dems in a box with McCaskill, Walsh and Webber having no option but to follow suit. Impressive instincts and tactics by Mathews in proving he's an older guy who knows how to spar on social media with quick and quality judgement. Igniting a bi-partisan call for her resignation certainly can't hurt his bid for majority leader with 500+ RTs…”


Rep. Jean Evans tweeted that “Speaker Todd Richardson says that any ‘merger’ in St Louis City and County will be determined by the entities, not the Legislature. #moleg”  See it here.



House Dems will hold their Summer Caucus next week in Jefferson City…


Unions Stop RTW – For Now

We Are Missouri – the coalition of labor unions – gave an impressive display of force with hundreds of members descending on the capitol to turn in signatures to force a referendum on the right to work legislation.  From the numbers (below), it’s hard to imagine that we won’t be getting a vote.

And when with that vote be?  Here’s Article III, Section 52(b) of the Constitution: “All elections on measures referred to the people shall be had at the general state elections, except when the general assembly shall order a special election.”

I imagine this Republican-dominated General Assembly would rather have this vote in August than driving turnout in the November general election.  Would they order a special election to make it so?... We’ll see….

Here are the Repeal Right To Work Signature Totals

District 1: 40,636 signatures turned in.  15,983 required.

District 2: 44,890 signatures turned in.  21,144 required.

District 3: 52,711 signatures turned in.  18,997 required.

District 4: 34,734 signatures turned in.  16,940 required.

District 5: 35,488 signatures turned in.  16,348 required.

District 6: 36,438 signatures turned in.  17,879 required.

District 7: 33,549 signatures turned in.  17,159 required.

District 8 Required 15817 Obtained 32122


According to this week’s poll (above), this issue is within the margin of error right now.  It will be one hell of a fight.


Tweet of the Day

Rep. Marsha Haefner‏ tweets that Monday she’s “off to Washington!”  See it here.


New Committees

Friends To Elect Pat Rowe Kerr was formed. Kerr, who made headlines for her sexual discrimination lawsuit under the Nixon administration.  She joins Jane Beetem as a candidate for House 60 (Rep. Jay Barnes’ seat).  The other rumored candidate is David Griffith, the executive director of the American Red Cross of Central and Northern Missouri, but he doesn’t have a committee formed yet.  The treasurer of Kerr’s committee is Gayla McKinnie.


eMailbag on Who’s to Blame for Belt Express

Read the court's opinion and read the statutes passed by the legislature. You can't blame the courts when all they are doing is following the laws passed by the legislature.


Monday’s Events

From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable calendar:

Rep. Pat Conway Solar Scramble – Moila Country Club – St. Joseph – 9AM


Lobbyists Registrations

Tom Dempsey added American Concrete Paving Association.


$5K+ Contributions

Liberty Alliance - $10,000 from Red Bird Ready-Mix Company.

Citizens for Steve Stenger - $5,001 from Missouri Association of Career Fire Protection Districts.

Property Casualty Insurers Association of America Political Account - $58,647 from Property Casualty Insurers Association of America.

Stand Up Missouri - $11,750 from Security Finance of Missouri LLC.

Raise Up Missouri - $10,000 from UFCW Local No. 88 Meat Cutter Union.


Monday Birthdays

Monday happy birthdays to Shane Schoeller and Sammy Panettiere.