Thursday, May 5, 2016

House Overrides Gov’s Paycheck Veto

In a major victory for Speaker Todd Richardson, the House voted to override the governor’s veto of Rep. Holly Rehder’s “paycheck protection” bill.

Rep. Ron Hicks flipped from his career-long position of being pro-labor to provide the critical final override vote.  One rumor was that he was upset that a union had worked against him in his recent unsuccessful mayoral race.  But who knows?

See the Post-Dispatch article here.

The bill now moves to the Senate, sending shudders through the lobbying corps who worry that the Senate will get ensnared in a filibuster or shutdown before they can finish their business for the session.

Earlier in session the Senate passed it with 23 Ayes – enough to override.  However some think that Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal might be a NO now.  If so the majority would probably target Republican Sens. Paul Wieland was a NO, and Gary Romine was absent, to flip.  And labor will likely be making their arguments to Republican Sens. Ryan Silvey and Wayne Wallingford, who have been sympathetic to labor in the past.



The Senate is working tomorrow, though the House breaks as usual and returns on Monday.


Schaefer Fights Back

Sen. Kurt Schaefer’s campaign manager, Scott Dieckhaus, issued a statement to push back against the ethics complaint and subsequent TV and direct mail that have peppered Schaefer lately.

I thought we had learned in the aftermath of the Schwiech tragedy the destructive and vile nature of this kind of campaign.  But, make no mistake, there is a coordinated effort between the Josh Hawley campaign and dark money forces from outside the state aiming to take down an honorable and experienced man – Kurt Schaefer.

Matthew Whitaker, an Iowa attorney with a DC address, filed a complaint against Senator Schaefer that was immediately dismissed by the Missouri Ethics Commission… Professor Hawley would have us believe that it was a complete coincidence that Public Integrity Alliance, an Arizona-based group, bought $250,000 of television time to run ads against Schaefer the same week that Whitaker filed his complaint.  You would have to suspend belief to believe that two out-of-state groups taking coordinated action is a coincidence, even if you knew nothing of the people involved.  But we do know something of the people involved, and it makes it even worse…

Both Professor Hawley and Whitaker’s law partner’s wife are still active with the religious liberty group within the DC-based Federalist Society.  But he would have us believe this also is just a coincidence.

We have reason to believe that the funds used by Public Integrity Alliance came through the law firm that Professor Hawley worked for in DC.  But he would have us believe this is just a coincidence as well.

I don’t believe in this many coincidences.  The use of nonprofit organizations in this fashion is a violation of state and federal law and should be investigated.  We continue our investigation and will turn over the information we develop to the appropriate authorities…


Gunn Pulls Gun

Russell Gunn was before my time.  But maybe he had a temper?  See it here.

Pull Quote: A former state representative from Northwoods faces felony charges after police say he pulled a gun on a motorist and assaulted him in a road rage incident…. St. Louis County prosecutors on Monday charged Gunn, 67, with second-degree assault and unlawful use of a weapon. Gunn, a Democrat, left the Missouri House in 2000 after eight years as a representative. He works as an insurance and securities broker and a lobbyist…  Gunn stopped his BMW, grabbed a handgun and walked toward the other man’s pickup, according to police. Gunn hit the man in the head with the barrel of the handgun, said Maplewood Detective Mike Gilb. The handgun discharged, and a bullet went through the roof of the victim’s pickup truck, Gilb said. The victim drove away, down Hanley Road, and pulled over to hide from Gunn…  According to records of the Missouri Ethics Commission, Gunn runs Gunn’s Consulting & Financial Services at 7309 Natural Bridge Avenue in St. Louis County. He is listed as a lobbyist for the Missouri Cable Telecommunications Association, the Manufacturing Training Alliance and others…


Raise Your Hands Legal Opinion

Amid the claims that the Raise Your Hands for Kids cigarette tax increase would harm the stem cellers, they asked for a legal opinion.  Attorney James Dowd finds no conflict between the cigarette tax increase language and Amendment 2 language.  See it here.


Sauer Turns In Signatures

Fred Sauer says that he’s turned in over 270,000 signatures to put his campaign finance limits on the ballot…

In filing a total of 272,193 signatures, 157,888 more signatures than is required by Section 50, primarily from the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th and 7th Congressional Districts on Friday, April 29, 2016 at 11:33 a.m., [we have] succeeded in ensuring Missouri voter's will have the opportunity to take back their government from elitist special interests.

 [The proposal] would, among other things, do the following:

 (1)Limit donations by individuals to any candidate or elected official to $2,600 per election cycle;

(2)Limit donations by individuals to political parties to $25,000 per election cycle;

(3)Limit donations by political parties to other campaign committees to $25,000 per election cycle;

(4)Ban donations by corporations or unions directly to candidates or elected officials, while still allowing corporations and unions to set up their own PACs to support or oppose candidates; and

(5)Prohibit PACs and other campaign committees from donating to each other in an effort to evade the campaign contribution limits.


Tweet of the Day

Chris King ‏@chriskingstl: Got a call from @RoyBlunt. Said he met with @NGA_GEOINT & doesn't think anything came up during comment period to change STL as HQ site.



Former Mayor Freeman Bosley has trouble again.  See it here.  Pull Quote: Eugene Willingham claims in a lawsuit filed May 2 in St. Louis Circuit Court that Bosley failed to adequately represent him in a case before the Illinois Worker’s Compensation Court. It said after being hired in 2010, Bosley failed to appear, and the court dismissed Willingham’s case Dec. 8, 2014…. Bosley and his law firm, Bosley and Associates LLC, are facing more than $185,000 in outstanding federal tax liens, according to data reviewed by the Business Journal…


Rep. Jay Barnes links to his speech on his amendment to make newspapers wait before reporting on suicides.  See it here.  Pull Quote: Newspapers in this state, including the Post-Dispatch, have fun pointing out the foibles and follies of this building. And the flaws that come with the political process. But Mr. Speaker, the newspapers of this state have their own flaws…


Lobbyists Registrations

Brent Hemphill added Gannett Fleming.



Happy birthdays to former Rep. David Day and Michael Hafner.