Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Jackson Suicide Follow-Up

According to news reports there was a suicide note found with Spence Jackson’s body.  Go to John Combest for the various news articles on it.  There are no answers in the reports.  Did he blame himself for Tom Schweich’s misfortune?  Was he distraught and depressed over losing someone that close to him?   Perhaps if the note becomes public at some point, it will give some insight into what apparently was Jackson’s troubled state of mind.

 

Senate Perfects PDMP

The Senate perfected Sen. David Sater’s SB 63 last night, the prescription drug monitoring program.  BOOM. After various amendments including one to put a 2020 sunset on the bill, it was perfected 23-9.

One lobbyist laughed that the action came immediately following my update yesterday morning in which I mused that will only seven weeks left, the bill might be in trouble.  Ha! Lucky for me I don’t mind being wrong… “I bet (obviously can't prove) that they were inspired to spike the football once hitting the end-zone by reading the ‘challenge’ yesterday morning.”

Its approval comes as big victory for Rep. Holly Rehder who has championed the cause in the House, and who tussled with Sen. Rob Schaaf – the leading opponent of the legislation – in the off-season.

 

Missouri Freedom’s Ryan Johnson had polling from Remington Research showing that Missourians opposed the measure.

Q: A proposed Prescription Drug Monitoring Program would create a central database of all prescription drugs and patients in Missouri. Opponents say it is a violation of personal privacy rights and liberty. Supporters say it is needed to track illegal prescription drug sales and abuse. Do you support the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program or oppose the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program in Missouri?

Support: 37%

Oppose: 53%

 

This differed from my Remington Research poll, done two months prior which did not outline the arguments, only the bill summary

Q: Senate Bill 63 established the Prescription Drug Monitoring Act. The bill requires the Department of Health and Senior Services to establish and maintain a program to monitor the prescribing and dispensing of controlled substances. The bill instructs the Department to review prescription information and inform law enforcement if there is reasonable cause to begin an investigation. Do you support or oppose establishing the Prescription Drug Monitoring Act?

Support..............47%

Oppose...............41%

Don’t know........12%

 

 

Koster Fundy

Last night Attorney General Chris Koster held a major fundraiser in downtown St. Louis. (Today is the end of the quarter).  It was originally planned for mast month, but the Schweich suicide led to a postponement.  Approximately 400 people were in attendance.  It’s said that the original date had 550 RSVPs. Presumably those folks still sent in their checks…

Bits from the night… Mike Wolff made his first appearance at a fundraising event since 1998, his time on the Supreme Court imposing a hiatus on the former statewide candidate; Sarah Wood Martin was sporting a new hairdo and a name-tag with her husband’s last name crossed off; St. Louis County Councilman Sam Page was back on the scene; Sen. Scott Sifton and Rep. Stephen Webber took leave of Jefferson City to smooze the donor-heavy crowd.  And potential statewide candidates were working the room: Secretary of State Jason Kander, St. Louis County Assessor Jake Zimmerman, and… Boone County Treasurer Nicole Galloway.

 

Claire McCaskill, introducing Koster, said there were too many public officials to acknowledge and held the applauses to a tight few – Mayor Francis Slay and County Executive Steve Stenger, Treasurer Clint Zweifel (“we did everything we could to get him to run for something this cycle.”), and former Governor Bob Holden, the man she primaried when he was a sitting governor…

 

Attorney General Chris Koster gave a General Election speech to the Democratic crowd, an indication that he’s frozen out potential challengers early.  Republicans looking at a three or four-way race will likely all be tilting rightward for the next sixteen months.

Koster said that neither party had all the answers, and that Dems were right to want to fund education, but were guilty of turning a “blind eye” to education’s problematic “bureaucracy.”  And Koster made a strong appeal for Zweifel’s Missouri Promise proposal with the stunningly simple and effective question: do we value cheap cigarettes more than we value higher education?

 

Sinquefield Not Emperor Palpatine

The Irish Times looks at Rex Sinquefield’s reshaping the chess landscape to make St. Louis the world capital.    See it here.

Pull Quote: “I would love to be able to say I’m a grand schemer,” said the 70-year-old. “I’d love to be able to say, like the Emperor in Star Wars, ‘Everything is proceeding as I have foreseen.’ It just happened.”

 

Bits

The latest article about Eric Greitens as a gubernatorial candidate.  See it here.

 

New PAC formed… Reform Ferguson.  The treasurer is Nick Kasoff.  It would appear this committee is a vehicle for the recall petition for Ferguson Mayor James KnowlesSee it here.

 

Robbyn Wahby was named executive director of the Missouri Charter Public School Commission.  Read it here.

 

Today’s Events

From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:

EMS Lobby Day

MBWA “Cooking with Beer” Reception – DoubleTree Hotel, Jefferson City – 5:30-7:30 p.m.

MRA Taste of the Rotunda – 3rd floor - 5:30 p.m.

Rep. Elijah Haahr Reception – Gumbo Bottoms, Jefferson City – 7-8:30 p.m.

 

Lobbyist Registrations

Andrew Foley added Lincoln University.

Jim Cooper added Kansas City Public Library System.

Glen W. Overton deleted Dunn Construction.

Greg Johnston deleted Pollard Banknote Limited.

 

$5K+ Contributions

Missourians for Koster - $25,000 from Kansas City Power and Light.

Ryan Euliss for City Council - $12,000 from Citizens for a Better Columbia.

Missouri Health Care Association PAC - $36,000 from Missouri Health Care Association.

Raise Your Hand for Kids - $15,000 from Kate Banks.

Missouri Realtors PAC Inc - $166,932 from REALTORS Political Action Comitttee.

Neosho Good Government Committee - $7,000 from Gene Schwartz.

Neosho Good Government Committee - $7,000 from Rudy Farber.

 

Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to former Rep. Allen Icet (58).