Zerr and Koster
Rep. Anne Zerr was with Democrat Chris Koster for governor… according to Twitter sources… Zerr says any rumors that she endored Koster are people "stirring up [stuff]."
StCharlesCoPachyderm @SCCPachyderm: Interesting sighting today...@azerr01 at Chris Koster office, endorsed him for #MOGov
Koster spokesman David Turner @A_Tall_Turner: Great to have @annezerr w/ @Koster4Missouri today in St. Charles
Zerr is a St. Charles Republicans who lost her bid for state senate last week.
Farm Bureau for Koster
Chris Koster won the Farm Bureau endorsement. According to media reports, he’s the first Democratic gubernatorial candidate ever to win their endorsement.
Listen to Koster’s and Eric Greteins’ speeches here. They are a study in contrast. Koster’s speech is full of specifics, both concerning where’s he’s been on the issues of the past, but also what his plans are for agriculture in a Koster administration. Greitens’ speech was heavy on his resume and very light on policy. He promised to put a team together to work on agriculture issues.
From one Republican: Greitens is going to move beyond his stump speech in order to win some of these constituencies.
Team Koster Planning First Term
Several political players – apparently at the behest of the Chris Koster’s team – have started to reach out to legislators and staffers in the building about the possibility of serving in a Koster administration.
It appears that Koster – while clearly in campaign mode – is intent on being able to hit the ground running if he wins the governor’s office.
Interestingly, some of the names of folks who have been contacted are Republicans. It’s an indication that Koster’s rhetoric (listen to the speech linked above) about working across the aisle would be matched with deeds.
If you missed the weekly poll yesterday, see it here.
Donald Trump: 44%
Hillary Clinton: 42%
Gary Johnson: 5%
Jill Stein: 2%
Roy Blunt: 47%
Jason Kander: 40%
Jonathan Dine: 4%
Fred Ryman: 2%
Chris Koster: 45%
Eric Greitens: 43%
Cisse Spragins: 5%
Russ Carnahan: 44%
Mike Parson: 42%
Steven Hedrick: 4%
Secretary of State
John (Jay) Ashcroft: 45%
Robin Smith: 43%
Chris Morrill: 5%
Eric Schmitt: 43%
Judy Baker: 40%
Sean O’Toole: 6%
Josh Hawley: 48%
Teresa Hensley: 44%
Lobbyist: Several observations - first, I believe the tough primary race of Hawley and Greitens have given them a bump in name ID, that could be also true for Parson, but not to the same extent. Ashcroft and Carnahan blockbuster name ID has not given them an unusual edge in the general race. Eric Schmitt has his hands full with this poll. ALL races have single digit undecided?? In the first week of August!
Finally, Hawley has the highest number of all candidates at 48%. Very early to have that high a number for a down ballot race, again that could be attributable to the boost Schaefer gave him with a raucous campaign…
Operation Rip and Replace
While other campaign staffers slept in on Wednesday morning, Eric Schmitt dispatched six sign teams around the state in a coordinated effort to take down the signs of candidates that lost and put a Schmitt sign in their place. The "rip and replace" program started Wednesday at dusk and helped the campaign put up hundreds of signs across the state in less than 48 hours. This may be a "sign" that Schmitt's campaign is prepared to scale a statewide race for the general that includes rolling up sleeves and coordinating with other GOP campaigns in all regions.
Missouri Freedom PAC
Missouri Freedom PAC was formed. It’s the Missouri vehicle for the Republican Attorney Generals Association to support Josh Hawley in the general election. See the paperwork here. The treasurer is Tony Feather.
House Republican Caucus Bits
A few bits from the House Republicans summer Caucus…
See the parade of checks to the House Republican Campaign Committee in the large contributions (below), as incumbents chip in to defend their super majority.
The hot race this autumn – to take place in the caucus immediately following the general election – is for speaker pro tem. Declared candidates are Reps. Elijah Haahr, Delus Johnson and Joe Don McGaugh. The only name so far for caucus chair is Rep. Mike Kelley, and I’m not sure of anyone running for caucus whip yet.
Eric Greitens address the caucus. He didn’t linger on his campaign theme of the corrupt Jefferson City culture instead he quickly pivoted to attacking Chris Koster.
And Peter Kinder addressed the group as a final farewell.
NYTimes reports on down-ballot candidates trying to distance themselves from the presidential candidate. See it here.
Pull Quote: After a disastrous week of feuds and plummeting poll numbers, Republican leaders have concluded that Donald J. Trump is a threat to the party’s fortunes and have begun discussing how soon their endangered candidates should explicitly distance themselves from the presidential nominee.
I’m not sure how much this matters in Missouri as I expect both Dems will be tiptoeing away from Hillary Clinton as much as Republicans from Trump.
And – Willard for Trump?
Word from Republicans is that Aaron Willard has been tapped to head up the Trump campaign in Missouri…
Follow-Up on Michael Barrett
Last week Michael Barrett wrote an extraordinary letter to Governor Jay Nixon, criticizing him for the lack of funding to the public defenders system. Could Barrett be in danger of being ousted by Nixon for the embarrassment?
With a little work, Nixon could axe him. The director of the public defenders is appointed by the Public Defender commission. It looks like there are two vacancies and one whose term has expired. So with those changes and one more vote, Nixon would control a majority of the commission.
From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:
August 8-11 NCSL Legislative Summit – Chicago, IL
Randy Scherr added Davita Healthcare Partners Inc.
Chris Roepe added John Bardgett & Associates Inc.
Jeremy Cady added Americans for Prosperity; and deleted Missouri Alliance for Freedom.
Kurt Brewer added Missouri Community Action Network.
Matthew Ryan Michelson added Missouri State Teachers Association.
Lorisa Smith added Missouri Department of Natural Resources.
David Linton deleted David Linton and United for Missouri.
John “Mark” Thomas Walter deleted Renew Missouri.
Koster for Missouri - $25,710 from Jobs and Opportunity.
Property Casualty Insurers Association of America Political Account - $26,239 from Property Casualty Insurers Association of America.
AGC of MO PAC - $6,800 from Twehous Excavating Co Inc.
Greitens for Missouri - $50,000 from August Busch III.
Make Saint Louis Safe - $22,500 from Great St. Louis Inc.
Ashcroft for Missouri - $5,001 from Friends of Dugger.
New Approach Missouri - $9,500 from Drug Policy Action.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $5,001 from Friends of Glen Kolkmeyer.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $6,000 from Friends for Paul Fitzpatrick.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $6,500 from Citizens for Dogan.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $8,200 from Friends of Rob Vescovo.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc –$8,500 from Plocher for Missouri.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $10,000 from FEAPAC of Missouri.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $10,000 from Enterprise Holdings Inc PAC.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $10,518 from Alferman for Missouri.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $11,650 from Citizens for McCaherty.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $12,000 from Kevin Austin for State Representative.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $12,500 from Friends of Kathy Swan.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $12,600 from Hill for Missouri.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $15,000 from MADA Dealers Interested in Government.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $15,000 from Citizens for Shull.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $15,750 from Friends of Travis Fitzwater.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $18,300 from Citizens for Wiemann.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $20,000 from Friends of Kirk Mathews.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $20,000 from Friends of Jay Barnes.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $40,000 from Fitzpatrick for House.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $40,000 from Friends of Elijah Haahr.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $51,000 from Missourians for Mike Cierpiot.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $15,000 from Signature Medical Group.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $14,425 from Citizens for Rocky Miller
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $10,000 from The Doe Run Company.
House Republican Campaign Committee Inc – $15,000 from Cheyenne International LLC.
Committee to Elect Randy Jotte - $10,000 from Doug Libla for Senate.
Happy birthdays to Shawn Furey and Greta Bax.