Wednesday, April 1, 2015

It’s April Fool’s Day, so…. Be careful out there….


Spence’s Suicide Note

The Jefferson City Police released the contents of Spence Jackson’s suicide note, creating even more head shaking and incomprehension.

“I’m so sorry. I just can’t take being unemployed again.”

That was the entire note.

Jeff Mazur Tweet In Reaction

@jmaz: Not political intrigue or unique pressures. Just an everyday fear shared by millions of Americans, working or out of work. Heart rending.


Med Mary Takes Next Step

The House Select Committee on General Laws Committee voted out Rep. Dave Hinson’s medical marijuana bill 8-0 yesterday.  The ability to unite both Republicans and Democrats on the issue is remarkable considering how not long ago the subject seemed taboo.

Two factors seem to be at play.  First, last year’s testimony, debate and passage of the hemp oil bill broadened a lot of legislators’ perspective on the issue.  To hear from families about their children suffering and being unable to find relief was a transformative step in the debate.

Second, lobbyists Steve Tilley, Mark Habbas and others have been making the conservative case that treatment decisions are best left to the doctor and patient, and government should intrude as little as possible.  That argument creates the philosophical framework many Republican House members are comfortable supporting.


Haahr Fundy

Rep. Elijah Haahr held a fundraiser at Jeff City’s Gumbo Bottoms last night.  Sometimes fundys get screwed by the legislative clock but this one occurred perfectly during a Senate recess that allowed lobbyists to hop by, fortify themselves with a drink or two, before heading back to the building.  Gumbo Bottoms is the perfect place for these events because the narrow bar fills up quickly creating a packed atmosphere for the candidate.

Haahr is on a very short list of state representatives mentioned as potential speaker after the expected ‘reign of Richardson.’

Projecting leadership votes three years out is imprecise.  However Haahr is building a reputation as a guy who can be given substantive bills without dividing the caucus, and as someone willing to help others accomplish their legislative goals.  Ultimately those skills will make him valuable in the building regardless of the title on his office door.


Senate Approves Provider Tax

The Senate approved continuing the provider tax which draws massive federal matching dollars and helps fund the state Medicaid program. Sen. Paul LeVota offered an amendment to expand Medicaid which was voted down on party lines, 9 Democrats voting in favor and 23 Republicans opposed.


MEC Issues “Letter of Concern” to Weiland

The Missouri Ethics Commission determined that Sen. Paul Wieland violated the law by not disclosing a $200 court fee paid on his behalf.  It issued a Letter of Concern.  See it here.


Rumorville: Gibbons Joins Team Greitens?

Word is that Eric Greitens is staffing up.  And the newest hire is… Meredith Gibbons, daughter of former Pro Tem Mike Gibbons.

According to her LinkedIn Profile Gibbons did a stint with US Senator Roy Blunt, and was most recently the Grassroots Relations PAC and Grassroots Coordinator for Smiths Group PLC.


Rumorville: Siettmann Out. Sutherland Up.

Mark Siettman, the long-time aide to Sen. Will Kraus, has left his position.  Taking his place is Chris Sutherland, who previously staffed John Griesheimer.



Bockelman: What IN Means for MO

PROMO’s A.J. Bockelman writes a blog post about “What Indiana Means for Missouri.” See it here.

Over the last few days since the internet erupted around all things RFRA and Indiana, we have had a lot of calls to the PROMO office asking about Missouri. So I want to clarify a few things...

Missouri passed a RFRA in 2003 and our version is consistent with both the Federal version and the other states. There was an attempt last year to issue an update to the RFRA similar to Indiana's version, however we stopped that from advancing last year. It was not reintroduced this year.

What we are starting to see is what I believe will be the next phase of what happens as the broad overreach of these RFRA's wear off. This year a bill has already passed the House headed to the Senate which would allow campus student groups to discriminate based on their sincerely held religious beliefs. We are in hopes of stopping that in the Senate this year.

Don't be lulled by what is happening in Indiana. Our opponents want to stop advances for the LGBT community. Just as we saw after Roe v Wade, the pro-life community had grand overreaches as well, but they retooled and continued to chip away at choice. While there is much outrage over Indiana right now, our opponents are continuing to learn and will continue to find new ways to practice discrimination.


Indiana’s Governor Mike Pence will be the keynote at the Camden County Republican Lincoln Days on April 11 (tickets are $35).


Rehder to MOFreedom: Check the Deets

Rep. Holly Rehder reacts to the Missouri Freedom poll I wrote about yesterday which shows Missourians opposed to her proposal for a Prescription Drug Monitoring Program.  “Looking at the polling question Missouri Freedom had, it’s actually incorrect because the database is for controlled substances, Schedule 2-4 only.  If I’m reading this correctly they asked people if they wanted this for ALL prescriptions and patients.  That’s misleading and incorrect.”


Rupp to DDRB

Carissa Rupp, wife of Public Service Commissioner Scott Rupp, was appointed to the Developmental Disabilities Resource Board by the St. Charles County Executive Steve Ehlmann.


Today’s Events

From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable events calendar:

Rep. Bill E Kidd Reception – Missouri Credit Union, Jefferson City – 6-7:30 p.m.


Lobbyist Registrations

Lana Ladd Baker added Engagepoint.

Dawn Nicklas added Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri; and deleted Discount Smoke Shop.

Lynne Schlosser added Compton Heights Bad, Inc., and Missourians for Growth; and deleted Missouri Association of Mortgage Professionals, and Missouri Environmental Defense Alliance – MEDA.


$5K+ Contributions

Missourians for Koster - $6,250 from Midwest Long Term Care Services LLC.

Missourians for Koster - $10,000 from Bommarito Automotive Group.

Betsy Peters for Council - $10,000 from Elizabeth Peters.

One Springfield - $7,500 from Henry van Amerigen.

Greitens for Missouri - $10,000 from John Crowley.

Greitens for Missouri - $10,000 from Mason Fink.


Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to Mike Wolff (70).