Legislature returns from Spring Break today, reconvenes at 4PM.
SB5 Stuck Down – For Now
Circuit Judge Jon E. Beetem struck down the municipal reform bill which limited the ability of local governments to fund themselves through ticketing and fines. Supporters of the bill promised an appeal. Post-Dispatch has the story. See it here.
Pull Quote: Several cities in St. Louis County had challenged the law, calling it an improper “special law” that unfairly targeted them, and an unfunded mandate that would be illegal under the Missouri Constitution… “This is another example of why so many Missourians have lost faith in government, the justice system and big institutions because they make them feel powerless and used,” [Eric] Schmitt said. “For years, citizens have been abused by local bureaucrats who have treated them like ATMs to fund their bloated budgets, salaries and perks. These same bureaucrats used the tax money they collected to hire an out-of-state attorney and lobbyists to fight the most significant municipal court reform ever enacted in Missouri.” A spokeswoman for Koster said people in his office were reviewing the ruling….
A bit of fumble brings the Weekly Poll a little later than usual this week. Below are the top lines. See the whole poll here in the Special Reports section.
Q: How concerned are you about an act of terrorism occurring in Missouri?
Very concerned: 29%
Somewhat concerned: 47%
Not concerned at all: 24%
Q: The candidates for United States Senate are the Republican Roy Blunt and the Democrat Jason Kander. If the election was held today, for whom would you vote?
Roy Blunt: 44%
Jason Kander: 37%
Q: There is a proposed constitutional amendment that would prohibit the state from imposing a penalty on an individual who declines, due to sincere religious beliefs, to provide goods of expressional or artistic creation for a same sex wedding or wedding reception. Do you agree or disagree with this constitutional amendment?
Q: A proposal in the State House establishes the Missouri Compassionate Care Act regarding the licensure of medical cannabis centers and cultivation and production facilities to provide medical marijuana to qualifying patients. Do you agree or disagree with this proposal?
Agree : 60%
House Considers SJR 39
The fight over the religious freedom SJR 39 moves to the House. It’ll be interesting to see to what committee Speaker Todd Richardson refers the resolution.
It’s said that some of the Republican lawyerly committee chairmen in the House take a dim view of the bill and are inclined to amend it to only deal with clergy and religious organizations.
Governing Magazine has an article about state governments passing “preemption laws” to the detriment of urban constituents. See it here.
Pull Quote: St. Louis can’t get a break from its own state. Last year, Missouri enacted a law preventing St. Louis and other cities from setting their own minimum-wage rates and from banning plastic grocery bags. This year, state lawmakers have spent a considerable amount of time debating whether to prohibit the city from taxing the income of its residents and workers. The state, which took control of the St. Louis police force during the Civil War, didn’t give it back until 2013, when it was forced to by a voter-approved ballot measure. If St. Louis feels ill-treated by state officials, it’s got lots of company around the country….
Today is the last day of filing. There was flurry of candidate filings yesterday. Some folks don’t think it’s smart to wait until the last day, because then the randomness of life can derail your plans – your car breaks down, you’re sick with the flu etc.
Former state senator and former mayor of Kansas City Charlie Wheeler filed to run for governor as a Democrat.
Congresswoman Ann Wagner got a primary as Greg Sears filed to run against her.
Anthony Banks joined the Democratic primary in Senate 11 (the old LeVota seat). He joins Rep. John Rizzo and Jessica Podhola.
Former Rep. Mike McGhee filed to run as a Republican in Senate 21 (Pearce seat). He’ll be in a primary with Rep. Denny Hoskins. See below for more on this match-up.
Donnie Owens filed to run in Senate 27 as a Democrat. The current incumbent is Republican Sen. Wayne Wallingford. Owens previously ran for Madison County Commissioner.
Tyler McCall filed to run in House 13 as a Democrat. The current incumbent is Republican Rep. Nick Marshall. See McCall’s twitter account here.
Mark Ellebracht filed to run in House 17 as a Democrat. The current incumbent is Republican Rep. Nick King. Ellebracht ran against King in 2014, losing by a mere 72 votes.
John Saxton filed to run in House 66 as a Republican. This is the Pierson seat, where there’s a three-way Democratic primary.
Don Houston filed to run in House 74 as a Democrat. The current incumbent Rep. Sharon Pace is termed. This creates a primary.
Robert Crump filed to run in House 82 as a Republican. If no one else files he’ll face Democrat Donna Baringer. The current incumbent Rep. Michele Kratky is termed.
Dennis Lavallee filed to run as a Democrat in House 101. This is the Gosen seat. Lavallee is the only Dem to file. There’s a four-way Republican primary.
Rick Lucas filed to run as a Republican in House 107. The current incumbent Rep. Ron Hicks is running for mayor instead of re-election. There’s now a Republican primary. Lucas is a member of the O’Fallon County Council.
Jeff Schwentker filed to run in House 108 as a Republican. He’ll be taking on Rep Justin Hill in a primary. Schwentker is on the O’Fallon County Council.
Gary Bonacker filed to run in House 111 as a Republican. He’s the fourth Republican to file, including incumbent Rep. Shane Roden.
Karen Swettlemoir-Berg filed to run in House 113 as a Democrat. She’s the second Dem to file. The current incumbent is Republican Rep. Dan Shaul.
McGhee in Senate 21
Former Rep. Mike McGhee is back. Four years ago, McGhee was a Rex Sinquefield-backed opponent to Sen. David Pearce. McGhee – despite the heavy Sinquefield intervention – lost by 30 points – 65% to 35%.
This time, though, the initial guess is that McGhee has even more obstacles. For starters, his opponent Rep. Denny Hoskins has the backing of every single state representative in the district and has been working the district in anticipation of this election.
Second, Hoskins’ has a more conservative voting record than Pearce, and hasn’t done anything to upset those gigantic donors (Sinquefield, Humphreys, Herzog, etc)
Finally, Hoskins has hired Axiom Strategies’ Aaron Baker, who has managed every successful state senate race in this district since Sen. Jim Mathewson held the seat.
eMailbag on St. Louis Essay
[Brian Feldman] is certainly right...we've seen the effects of deregulation on St. Louis and other cities in areas ranging from banking to air travel. And it's taken a toll. But we're not helpless victims...some cities-Indianapolis & Nashville come to mind-have faced the same challenges with more success because they reformed their governments. The modern version of government is more nimble and better able to prosper in new environments.
Powered by Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:
Reps. Gail Beatty & Gina Mitten Reception – Capitol City Theater, Jefferson City –5:30PM.
Reps. Jon Carpenter & Rory Rowland Reception – Missouri Credit Union Assn., Jefferson City – 6PM.
Rep. Shamed Dogan Reception – Gumbo Bottoms, Jefferson City – 6PM.
Sen. Mike Parson Reception – Grand Café, Jefferson City – 6:30PM
Jorgen Schlemeier, Sarah Topp, Jeff Brooks, and Bill Gamble added Ticketnetwork.
Leslie Serene Pritchard added Missouri Family Health Council.
Sammy Panettiere added Children’s Mercy Hospital.
Greitens for Missouri - $5,001 from Jim Bildner.
Greitens for Missouri - $25,000 from Marlene Ricketts.
Greitens for Missouri - $5,001 from William Hume.
Greitens for Missouri - $25,000 from Richard Uihlein.
Greitens for Missouri - $5,001 from Pat Sechler.
Greitens for Missouri - $5,001 from Paul Bancroft III.
Hanaway for Governor Inc - $10,000 from Menlo Smith.
Greitens for Missouri - $12,000 from Michael Blatz.
MO Democratic State Committee - $28,500 from Democratic Governors Association Missouri.
Missourians for John Brunner - $5,001 from Chemisphere.
New Approach Missouri - $6,800 from J Rahm Narayan.
Happy birthdays to Rep. Nathan Beard, former Reps. Ellen Brandom, Neal C. St. Onge, and Zachary Brunnert.