Tuesday, April 1, 2014

House Votes on Paycheck Protection

Yesterday the House voted to advance the “paycheck protection” bill of Rep. Holly RehderSee it here.   Rehder kept her cool during heated debate that included Rep. Jeff Roorda invoking the imagery of Nazis.  See Missourinet’s article here.

But the vote was much closer than I expected, 83-70.

I wonder how much the “carve out” for first responders hurt the bill.  From a public policy standpoint there was no good explanation presented why some public employees should be treated differently.  And it undermined the proponents’ fundamental argument: that this was good for workers.  If so, why wouldn’t they give firefighters that same benefit?

The fierce divide bodes ill for the right to work issue in the House as some of the Yes votes – like Rep. Kevin Engler – indicated that they’d be a No on right to work. 

Rupp Domino Effect

Sen. Scott Rupp nomination to the Public Service Commission is causing a minor shuffle among Senate committee chairs. 

Sen. Mike Parson, currently Chair of Governmental Accountability and Fiscal Oversight, will move over and take chairmanship of Rupp’s Small Business, Insurance and Industry Committee.

Sen. Ryan Silvey is Vice-Chair of GAFO, but instead of becoming chairman, he’s shifting over to Vice-Chair of the powerful Appropriations Committee.

Sen. Mike Cunningham, a freshman, scores the chairmanship of GAFO.

Rupp’s nomination is expected to up tomorrow morning in Guby Appts Committee and then on the Senate floor on Thursday.

Breast Feeding

The Senate suspended one of its rules to expedite the passage of Rory Ellinger’s bill which allows a nursing mother to be excused from jury duty.

Sen. Joe Keaveny carried the bill in the Senate and said that Ellinger’s “health has taken a severe downturn.”  Keaveny is Ellinger’s roommate in Jefferson City.

It passed 31-0.

Nixon’s Bully Pulpit

Governor Jay Nixon fired another warning shot at the Senate tax cut bill…

“At a time when public education is more important than ever to the strength of our economy, Senate Bill 509 would permanently undermine Missouri's ability to support K-12 and higher education.  In fact, with a price tag of more than $620 million annually, Senate Bill 509 is the equivalent of wiping out the investments needed to fully fund our K-12 foundation formula and keep college affordable.  Once again, the choice facing members of the General Assembly is clear: they can invest in good schools and create good jobs or they can support reckless fiscal experiments, but they cannot do both.”

We’ll see how much his words change the trajectory of legislation.  There’s some consternation that the governor’s poo-pooing of the huge criminal code revision could sink that mammoth effort. 

One observer: “If Tom Dempsey doesn't bring up the criminal code bill he is weak weak weak. A number of folks have worked on this for years. It is the senate for God's sake. They used to eat Governor's up when they would pull bullshit like this. Not all of that was good. But this is absolutely ridiculous. Just weak weak weak.  They call his bluff I bet he doesn't veto it…”

Filing News

In House 149 (Rep. Steve Hodges termed), Morgan Copeland Nesselrodt formally withdrew. She was a Democratic candidate.  Diedra Ashley Freeman now holds the Dems’ hopes.  But Republicans are acting very confident in their candidate, Don Rone.

Senate Bowling Fundraiser

The Senate held their bowling fundraiser last night, raising thousands of dollars for fighting cancer.  The winning team was Sen. Mike Kehoe’s “Strike Force,” a carefully constructed team of ringers to topple the event’s favorite Ron Richard’s team.


It’s April Fools Day… careful out there.

Lobbyist Registrations

From the Gate Way Group website:

Jessica Hodge, Ginger Steinmetz and Greg Johnston added Amikids.

Phil LeVota added Jackson County Missouri.

Richard A McIntosh added Catapult Learning LLC.

Karen Bailey deleted Penn National Gaming Inc.

Scott D. Brown deleted Astrazeneca Pharmaceuticals LP.

Ginger Steinmetz deleted Propel Financial Services LLC.

Neal English and Mark Habbas added Missourians for Compassionate Care.

Richard A McIntosh added Catapult Learning LLC.

Darren Reaman added Custom Electronic Design & Installation Association (CEDIA)

Kent Gaines added Intralot Inc.

Bradley J Ketcher added Hawkeye Land Company.

$5K+ Contributions

Citizens for Morris - $14,440 from Family Pharmacy.

Eastern Missouri Senate PAC - $99,825 from Southwest Missouri Senate PAC.

Committee to Elect Bill Otto - $5,001 from Joseph C Kleeman Memorial Democratic PAC.

Hanaway for Governor - $10,000 from Committee to Elect Ron Richard.

MO Democratic State Committee - $10,000 from Jake Hummel Campaign Fund.

Friends of Gina Jaksetic - $5,001 from Friends of Joe Don McGaugh

Friends of Gina Jaksetic – $10,000 from Citizens for Marsha Haefner.

Friends of Gina Jaksetic - $15,000 from Friends of Diehl.

Citizens to Elect Mike Kehoe - $25,000 from Committee to Elect Ron Richard.

Friends of Peter Kinder - $10,000 from Lewis & Clark Ozarks Mountain Forum.

Friends of Peter Kinder - $10,000 from Lewis & Clark Regional Leadership Forum

Missourians for Children’s Education - $12,307 from Archdiocese of St. Louis.

Spooner for Senate - $10,000 from Michele Lucas.

Spooner for Senate - $5,000 from Elizabeth Lenke Lawrence Lenke

Spooner for Senate - $10,000 from Spooner Law LLC.

Sanders for Jackson County - $10,000 from Kansas City Power and Light.

Notes on Money

The Senate is shifting money from its Southwest PAC where Sen. Bob Dixon is UNOPPOSED to its Eastern PAC.  Bad news for the Dems in Senate 22 and Senate 24.

Likewise unopposed Republican Reps. Joe Don McGaugh and Marsha Haefner, along with Speaker-designate John Diehl are sending cash into the highly competitive House 90 District (Rep. Rick Steam termed).

Senate Floor Leader follows Pro Tem Tom Dempsey’s lead by sending $10,000 to Catherine Hanaway’s campaign.