Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Spring Time in the Senate

Yesterday the hallways outside the Senate Lounge were clogged with back-to-back hearings of intense interests for lobbyists.  First was the Judiciary Committee hearing on the so-called “allocable share” bill.  It’s a bill which seems to be offered and debated with various amounts of vigor every year dealing with whether to lasso in the “Little Tobacco” companies into the master settlement agreement that Big Tobacco is a part of.

Immediately following that hearing was the Commerce Committee discussing the proposal for a new alternative regulatory framework for the investor owned utilities.  Again a huge crowd spilling into the hallway.

All this happened in the middle of another day of a comatose Senate, adjourning soon after the reading of the journal, with no real business being conducted – an aftermath from last week’s legislative hostilities.

The building denizens are all over the spectrum on when the Senate will return to its old form.  Generally no one expects much from the next two day.  Dems will reportedly let the reading of the journal be waived today, indicating a minor thaw.  Still they’re unlikely accommodate any other advances.

After the week of spring break, some think they’ll be a cooling of tempers and a fragile peace.  One observer describes it as injury early in the season, there’s enough time in the session left to recover.  Another is not optimistic.  He notes that the paycheck protection bill will likely be vetoed by the governor and back for an override in the Senate after spring break, putting the Senate right back into the fire again, with little time to rebuild trust.

And

It’s not just Dems upset with the Republicans’ running of the chamber.  The hard feelings go both ways. Republicans are particularly upset with Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal.  They point to this tweet – a picture of hooded KKK – with the commentary “This is who I have to work with in the Missouri Senate.”

One rumor is that Pro Tem Ron Richard sent a letter to Minority Leader Joe Keaveny asking the Democratic Caucus to repudiate Chappelle-Nadal’s accusation.

 

Meanwhile

The House worked into the night, passing bills to be sent over to the Senate as if oblivious to the traffic jam that piling up over there.

 

MOScout Prez Primary Contest Winners

Democrat

Two folks hit Hillary Clinton’s 49.6% total right on the head, but it was Danny O’Neill whose Bernie Sander’s guess came closer so he gets the crown.  Honorable mention to Richard Callow.

Republican

Katie Casas got the Republican order correct and her Donald Trump guess of 41% was just a hair off of the actual 40.8%.

 

Greitens To Return $1 Million?

Yesterday I did a blurb about a major Greitens donor who faces a lawsuit for sexual abuse.  I wrote that he’d given Eric Greitens $500K.  In fact I missed one of his two contributions to the Greitens campaign.  He has contributed $1 million.

The same individual, Michael Goguen, gave $250K to John Kasich’s SuperPAC.  They returned the money after news of the allegations.

Yesterday Catherine Hanaway called on Greitens to do the same and return the million dollars.

"I call on Mr. Greitens to cut all ties to Mr. Goguen and to send back his campaign contributions, now.  If he does not, serious questions must be raised about Mr. Greitens's judgment and whom he surrounds himself with," Hanaway said. "As a federal prosecutor, I was a national leader in prosecuting child exploitation crimes, and the seriousness of these claims against Goguen cannot be overstated. It is clear that Eric must return the $1 million in contributions he has received from Goguen. But, many questions remain for Eric to answer including how close he and Goguen  are, whether he ever met this woman and was he aware of this woman's claims against Goguen."

The Greitens campaign replied with a Nope, in the Post-Dispatch article.

“There are serious accusations being thrown around on both sides of this civil case,” Austin Chambers, Greitens’ campaign manager, said in a statement. “We must allow the legal process to run its course and sort out the facts. As a federal prosecutor, we assumed Catherine Hanaway believed folks were innocent until proven guilty. Guess not. That’s a shame.”

 

Walton Gray for County Council

The mighty Jason Rosenbaum gets the scoop… on Twitter he reports: STL County Council election news: State Rep. Rochelle Walton Gray has filed to run against Councilman Mike O'Mara.

 

Hawley on Senate Approps

His press release: Hawley: It's time for Senator Schaefer to end taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood

In December, I called on the legislature to stop sending our tax dollars to Planned Parenthood. Missouri's House of Representatives has acted. Now it's up to the Senate appropriations committee to end taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood. I call on Senator Schaefer, chairman of the Appropriations Committee, to stop taxpayer dollars from going to Planned Parenthood in our state. There is no excuse for delay.

 

For Those Who Can’t Look Away From a Crisis

Chris Kuban writes on LinkedIn the “5 Ways Melissa Click Could Have Saved Her Job…”  See it here.

1) Respond and Take Action Immediately

My research indicates that the first public interviews that Click conducted were done on February 10th; a full 3 months after her verbal attack on the student reporter went viral... While handling crisis communication in reaction to incidents like this, one cannot be silent!  Taking action immediately i.e., a sincere apology, should have occurred within 2 days to 1 week after the videos went viral….

2) Be Open and honest

It is vitally important that anyone facing accusations in a crisis situation come across in a manner that’s open, honest and transparent as to the reasons for their actions….

3) Address the Critics Head On

It appears that Click had no strategy in place to address her critics. Because of the attacks, it appeared that Click went into hiding therefore not responding to any of the criticism alleged against her... 

4) Apologize

Apologies go a long way if they are sincere and meaningful.  If done effectively, after a public apology, many of the critics may have ceased with their attacks on Click…

5) Turn a negative situation into a positive one

It is our contention that if Click would have conducted a timely press conference where she apologized, constructively addressed her critics and was honest and open, she would have had the chance to reframe the conversation.  She could have stated that she has learned a great deal through this experience, and, as a learning institution, she will use this experience to help others at the University of Missouri…

 

Ferguson Approves DOJ Settlement

The New York Times reports on Ferguson reaching a Department of Justice settlement.  See it here.

Pull Quote: The City Council here voted on Tuesday to approve a settlement with the Justice Department to overhaul the city’s police and courts, capping a tense few weeks of indecision over how to push forward a community at the center of more than a year and a half of racial upheaval in America. With the 6-to-0 vote, Ferguson must now begin the long, deliberate and costly process of carrying out sweeping reforms to a criminal justice system that has been under fire since a white police officer fatally shot an unarmed black teenager in August 2014.

 

And

House janitorial services are up for bid.  See it here.

 

New Filings

Pat Riehle filed to run in House 28 as a Democrat.  Riehle is the fourth Democrat to file for the seat to replace termed Rep. Tom McDonald.  No Republican has filed yet.  Riehle ran in 2012, losing in the primary to McDonald 73%-27%.

Barbara Stocker filed to run in House 115 as a Democrat.  The incumbent is Republican Rep. Elaine Gannon.  An article, from two years ago, describes Stocker during her then-Congressional run as a retired biochemist.  See it here.

 

Today’s Events

From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:

Missouri Beer Wholesalers Reception – Revels – 5:30PM

Reps. Craig Redmon, Lyndall Fraker & Paul Fitzwater St. Pat’s Celebration – Credit Union Assn. – 6PM.

 

Lobbyists Registrations

Yancy Williams added Primary Marking System Inc. and Fair Trade Missouri.

Deanna Hemphill, Dave Berry, and Katherine Casas added Primary Marking System.

David Jackson and Deanna Hemphill added Renovate American Ince.

Andy Blunt, Mark Schwartz, and Jay Reichard added Evicore; and deleted Medsolutions.

Keith Wenzel and Joe Bednar added Spencer Fane LLP; and deleted Spencer Fane Britt and Browne LLP.

Kelli Stiles deleted Spencer Fane Britt and Browne LLP.

Jim Moody added Statehouse Strategies LLC; and deleted Schreimann, Rackers, Francka And Blunt, LLC.

Heath Clarkston and Harry Gallagher added Netchoice.

Dale Ludwig added Missouri FFA Leadership Fund.

Scott Swain deleted Great Kansas City Local Initiatives Support Corporation, Johnson & Associates Inc., and LINQ3.

Lowell Pearson deleted Kansas City Southern Railway Company.

 

$5K+ Contributions

MEDA PAC (MO Energy Dev. Association Political Action Committee) - $50,000 from Empire District Electric.

Slay for Mayor - $25,000 from CHIPP Political Account.

Raise Your Hand for Kids - $40,844 from RAI Services Company.

Greitens for Missouri - $10,000 from Richard Uihlein.

New Approach Missouri - $10,000 from Christopher Newman Sole Proprietorship.

Freedom PAC - $10,000 from RRG LLC.

House Republican Campaign Committee Inc. - $10,000 from Roy Pfautch.

 

Birthdays

Happy birthdays to Melissa Randol, Jon Dolan, and Tom Villa.