Tuesday, April 12, 2016

New “Small Government” PAC Formed

Missourians for Smaller Government filed paperwork with the Missouri Ethics Commission.  It’s a new political action committee.  Its treasurer is Greg Hoberock.

Hoberock previously was behind ads against Rep. Anne Zerr for her right to work vote.

Hoberock establishing a PAC is not a good development for her Senate 23 run.

IT also follows a pattern of the big Republican donors creating their own vehicles to pursue their political agendas separate from just donating to the Missouri Republican Party or the House Republican Campaign Committee.

David Humphreys has his “Accountability Committee; Rex Sinquefield has a few vehicles, including Missouri Club for Growth, and Grow Missouri.

But also so much money shloshing around contributes to an environment of seeing money behind every vote.  We’ll see how much Hoberock funds this committee with, but there’s no evidence that the rise of six and seven figure campaign checks is getting Missouri any better public policy.


SJR39 House Hearing Today

Rep. Elijah Haahr’s Emerging Issues Committee is schedule to conduct its public hearing on SJR39 today.  It’s scheduled for 5PM or upon adjournment, whichever is later in House Hearing Room 3.

It should draw a big crowd, and the put the divide between the business wing of the Republican Party and the social conservatives on full display.


Senate Debates Voter ID – Again

Last night the Senate again debated the Voter ID proposal.  After a few hours they put the bill back on the informal calendar for future debate.

It appears that leadership has decided to take the tried and true path for controversial bills.  Bring it up repeatedly, and give the minority party a chance to come to the negotiating table and find a compromise.

It will be no surprise to anyone that if Dems continue to filibuster the proposal when its brought up over the next month and no middle ground if found that there will be a PQ near the end of the final week of session.

We’ll see….


NAACP Day at the Capitol

The press release: The Missouri State NAACP will host a legislative day Tuesday (April 12) at the Missouri State Capitol to rally against an oppressive voter ID law. The event is set to begin at 10:15 a.m. in the First Floor Rotunda….

The following confirmed speakers will be on hand to address those in attendance:

  • Esther Haywood, President, St. Louis County NAACP and former State Representative
  • Jason Kander, Secretary of State of Missouri
  • Nicole Galloway, State Auditor
  • Clint Zweifel, State Treasurer
  • Brandon Ellington, State Representative and President of Legislative Black Caucus
  • Michael Lewis, President, Missouri AFL-CIO
  • Charles Smith, President, Missouri NEA


Nixon Exec Order to “Ban the Box”

Governor Jay Nixon signed an executive order yesterday aimed at helping those who have served time in jail at reintegrating into society.  It would prohibit state agencies from asking about previous criminal record on job applications.

Sen Jamilah Nasheed, who has championed the issue, released a statement: Nasheed is a longtime advocate of criminal justice reform and introduced a bill to “Ban the Box” earlier this session (SB 724). With the bill stalled in committee, Nasheed launched an online petition urging Nixon to implement the policy via executive order that has gathered hundreds of signatures throughout the state.

“Far too often, former offenders knock on the door of opportunity only to have it slammed in their faces,” said Senator Nasheed. “A non-violent criminal record should not be a pretense for employers to deny an individual without giving him or her a chance to explain for themselves. I commend Governor Nixon on his decision to help our state’s most vulnerable residents find jobs and create new lives. This is a huge step forward for Missouri.”

Under today’s executive order, state agencies will still have the opportunity to run background checks on prospective employees, but they will not be able to automatically discount former offenders based on the first round of applications.

The order gives an estimated 20,000 Missourians, who are released from prison each year, more opportunities to find work.


Questions About Ashcroft?

In the halls, some say that there are questions in Jay Ashcroft’s past that could become a campaign issue.  Specifically, why he didn’t graduate from the United States Merchant Marine Academy which he attended.

It’s hard to believe anyone really cares so much about a candidate’s teenage years, and the easiest way to diffuse the issue is to simply address it.  But sometimes small things become bigger things.

We’ll see….


Eagle Forum Drama

An awfully lot of draa for a group that most people don’t really ever think about… Phyllis Schlafly’s Eagle Forum is embroiled in a potential schism. And of course, Ed Martin is in the middle of it all.

Here’s yesterday’s email from Schlafly alleging a coup d’etat…

“At 2pm today, 6 directors of Eagle Forum met in an improper, unprecedented telephone meeting.  I objected to the meeting and at 2:11pm, I was muted from the call.  The meeting was invalid under the Bylaws but the attendees purported to pass several motions to wrest control of the organization from me.  They are attempting to seize access to our bank accounts, to terminate employees, and to install members of their own Gang of 6 to control the bank accounts and all of Eagle Forum….”

See the Post-Dispatch article here.

Pull Quote: Members of the board said in a statement that they ousted Martin in Monday’s meeting, specifying no reason. But Schlafly, in her own statement, alleged the meeting was “improper” and that its “conduct will not stand,” so it was unclear whether his removal is official. Neither Martin nor Schlafly could be reached for comment.

One of the board members, Eunie Smith of Alabama, said in an interview that Martin was removed because of issues related to his “character and management style.” She declined to be more specific, and she strongly denied Schlafly herself has been targeted for removal as chairman of the board….


Lobbyists Registrations

Nancy McKee added Sunovion Pharmaceuticlasinc.

Mark Schwartz added Missouri Cable Telecommunications Association.

Anne Essing added The Downtown Community Improvement District.


$5K+ Contributions

Koster for Missouri - $10,000 from IUPAT.

Raise Your HHHand for Kids - $33,222 from RAI Services Company.

Raise Your Hand for Kids - $82,952 from RAI Services Company.

Raise Your Hand for Kids - $100,000 from RAI Services Company.

Koster for Missouri - $75,000 from Schlichter Bogard & Denton LLP.

Citizens for Responsible Government - $5,250 from Better Government for Missouri.



Happy birthday to Courtney Curtis.



Be ready – tomorrow is American Cancer Society’s “Suits & Sneakers Day.”