Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Veto Session Preview

Veto session is one week from today.  Here’s what to look for…

The Night Before

The fun starts the day before.  Grab a seat on High Street and watch the legislators and lobbyists hop from one event to another, dropping off envelopes and trading gossip.  Mary Scruggs’ indispensable calendar has 16 events listed on the 12th.  It starts with a “Schupp, Lavender, Arthur & McCreery Reception” at 4PM and ends with “Richard, Kehoe, MSCC Dessert Reception at Kehoe’s home.”   The next day has eleven breakfast fundraising events before Veto Session officially begins.

Maria Chappelle-Nadal and Warren Love

The consensus is that both Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal and Rep. Warren Love escape any consequences for their ill-advised social media postings.  One player summed it up this way: “Neither is agreeing to resign.  With the current state probably not enough votes to kick either out despite both Sen Dem caucus and House GOP caucus wishing they would resign to avoid further embarrassment.”

It’s pretty remarkable that they both basically waited out that bi-partisan calls for their resignation, and now the outrage appears to be dissipating.  Lieutenant Governor Mike Parson will have to admit that after leading the charge, the Senate simply didn’t follow.  One building denizen offers one caveat to the consensus forecast of non-action: “If someone moves for anything against her, all bets are off.  But I think she will want to lay low and cross her fingers that the Rep. Love incident means no one wants to touch that topic.”


The best guess of folks I talked to was that nothing will happen.  While Dems are itching to override HCB3 in the House, they don’t have the votes.  Some were considering revisiting the governor’s veto of UMKC bonds.  But since they’ve now said they can do it with private funding, the wind has been taken out of those sails.

It’s possible that Budget Chair Scott Fitzpatrick will move to override some of the governor’s line items (see them here), but he’d probably only do so if support is lined up in the Senate first.  So… we’ll see…


House will hold its speaker-elect vote.  Rep. Elijah Haahr remains the favorite to beat out Reps. Robert Cornejo and Holly Rehder.


Norr Kick-off in Senate 30

Rep. Charlie Norr will kick-off his Senate 30 bid on September 24 with a reception featuring “hearty hors d’oeuvres, wine tasting and a cash bar.”

What It Means

Norr is not the preferred candidate for some Dems who think if they had a “bigger name” they could make the seat competitive.  This puts the pressure on someone like Craig Hosmer or Rep. Crystal Quade to make a decision on 2018 and start to gently nudge Norr out.

Dems are hopefully that the midterms with an unpopular president will produce some opportunities, but they have to be positioned to capitalize on them.



In the large contributions today, see that Polsinelli has given money to POL PAC.  It appears that they are the most recent of Jefferson City lobbying firms to establish a PAC to deal with the changing world of Amendment 2.  Previously Penman Winton gave to PWPAC, and Statehouse Strategies gave to SHS PAC.


Super Attorney Chuck Hatfield recently distributed a nifty graph as short-hand for where the current Amendment 2 opinions have left campaign laws.  See it here.


Nixon Re-emerges

Former Governor Jay Nixon announced that “he’s back” on Twitter“Mizzou football starts, Vote to stop right to work coming, fall outdoors season here---so I'm back on twitter.”

It’ll be interesting to see what his post-gubernatorial voice sounds like.

Yesterday’s twitter-topic: soccerToday's news shows clearly: St Louis needs and can get an MLS Soccer team. The world's game, our history, more kids playing, time is now

What It Means

By mentioning the right to work vote, Nixon appears to be signaling that he’s going to stay engaged on public policy, not unlike former President Barack Obama’s statement yesterday on DACA. Can Nixon emerge as a Democratic party elder and help guide his party back to relevance in the statehouse – in a way he couldn’t do while he was worried about his own political fortunes?



Krewson Tries to Calm STL

Ahead of what could be a volatile jury announcement, St. Louis City Mayor Lyda Krewson offers some calm words.  See it here.  This is a pattern for the young Krewson administration, trying (which they did successfully with the confederate statute monument removal) to get in front of possible controversies and address them on their own terms and not in a reactionary fashion.


St. Louis Business Journal headlines: “Businesses warn employees, stock plywood ahead of Stockley murder trial verdict”  Yikers!  Read it here.




Don’t Panic. Doomday Electropulse. Well, Maybe Panic is Warranted Actually.

Over the weekend The Wall Street Journal reported that North Korea may use their emerging rocket and nuclear technology to attack the United States energy grid (Read the full story). “In a worst-case scenario, the outages could last for months, indirectly costing many lives, since hospitals would be without power, emergency services couldn’t function normally, and people could run short of food and water...”

Each of these stories about the vulnerability of the electrical grid add ammunition to those making the case that Missouri needs to modernize its grid.  Whether it’s the killer NK EMP or some other cyber threat, we keep reading about the grid as a target.



Post-Dispatch reports on why the Blue Alert wasn’t issued during latest St. Louis City attack.  (SPOILER: It wouldn’t have helped).  See it here“When police departments want to issue a Blue Alert, they will fill out a form, which is handled by the Highway Patrol…”


State Budget Director Dan Haug announced today that August 2017 net general revenue collections increased 7.0 percent compared to August 2016, from $740.6 million last year to $792.3 million this year…


Mizzou free market professor Aaron Hedlundwho is contemplating a run for US Senate – pens an opinion piece in the National Review outlining the principles he espouses for tax reform.  See it here.


MMJ advocate resigned.  Springfield News-Leader has the story here. A Springfield medical-marijuana proponent quit one of her positions last week after facing criticism for her comparison of police and the Ku Klux Klan. Trish Bertrand, president of the Springfield chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, was photographed holding a sign that said the following: "COPS AND THE KKK GO HAND IN HAND."


Lair Passes

Former Rep. Mike Lair passed away, according to a tweet from Rep. Justin Alferman“Mike was one of the most kind individuals I've ever met.  Please keep family in prayers…”

I’ll post an obituary tomorrow.


New Committees

Tyler Gunlock formed a candidate committee (Gunlock For Missouri) to run for House 130 as a Democrat.  The current incumbent is Rep. Jeffrey Messenger. Gunlock’s treasurer is Jason Whitesell.  See Gunlock’s twitter here.


Lobbyists Registrations

Zach Brunnert, David McCracken, Richard McIntosh, Shantel Smith, Bill Stouffer, Franc Flotron, and Keith Antone Willis Sr. added 4me4we LLC.

Mark Schwartz added Missouri Coalition For Community Behavioral Healthcare.

Michael White added Country Club JV LLC.

Former Lieutenant Governor Kenneth Rothman terminated his lobbyist registration.  His clients were: One McKinght Place, Delmar Gardens, Deutsch Family LLC, McKnight Place Extended Care LLC, The Gatesworth, BJC Health System, Deutsch Family Investments LLC, Gardenview Care Center, Larus Corporation, McKnight Place Assisted Living LLC, and Physician’s Advantage Health Care Group.

Brett Dinkins deleted Missouri Department of Economic Development.


$5K+ Contributions

CLEAN Missouri - $10,000 from Shamberg, Johnson & Bergman.

POL PAC - $19,000 from Polsinelli.

Raise Up Missouri - $15,000 from SEIU Local 1.

Raise Up Missouri - $15,000 from SEIU Healthcare IL IN.

We Are Missouri - $20,000 from SEIU Local 1.

We Are Missouri - $75,000 from United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, AFL-CIO, CLC.



Happy birthdays to Alderwoman Sarah Wood Martin and Monsanto’s Sam Murphey.