Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Love Is Gone

Remember when Missouri Chamber and Governor Jay Nixon were all lovey-dovey?  It was after Nixon’s Republican-esque first term, when he was running for re-election.  He wouldn’t talk about ObamaCare and was scared to death of anything looking anything like a tax increase.

Ah, young love…  The fleeting infatuation…  The teenage summer by the pool… Anyone?

Well, those days are gone.

Nixon has zinged the Chamber for their role in the Poaching Perry saga.  (See the Jo Mannies article here.)  And the Chamber tweeted out a ranking that showed Nixon was “39th out of 45 governors in job creation.”  See it here.

Will these two get back together by January, in time for session?...

Koster Contra Walgreens

Attorney General Chris Koster filed a civil suit yesterday against Walgreens for “engaging in false, misleading, and deceptive advertising and pricing schemes to lure consumers into purchasing certain products.”

General Koster apparently sent undercover agents to Walgreens where they found the stuff listed as “on sale” on the shelves was then not “on sale” when it came time to ring it up at the register.

Pull Quote: “This is a business practice to essentially steal from sick and old people who go into Walgreens and find themselves at the cash register, they have 6 people behind them, they can’t go back to the aisle, so they pay Walgreens’ toll time and again,” Koster said.  Read NPR’s story here.

Walgreens’ reaction was that they’re “prepared to have a constructive dialogue about the issues.”  Um, it’s a little late for that.  The dialogue should happen before the attorney general holds the press conference.

Interesting to note that Walgreens has no lobbyist representation in Missouri.  One would think that a big company like Walgreens would know better, but that’s what happens when you ignore state politics.  You wake up one morning and the attorney general is using you for batting practice.

CVS, which of course won’t engage in such pricing shenanigans, is represented by Burton-Liese – for what it’s worth.

Auditor on Top

In a non-presidential year, and without a US Senator up for election, this cycle will feature an auditor at the top of the ticket.

And that quirk – it hasn’t happened in Missouri since 1990 – already has strategists mulling what it means for their turn-out models.

This one reason why Republicans – despite the rhetoric of Speaker Tim Jones and Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder – aren’t thrilled with the notion of a “right to work” ballot issue.  Right to work is the kind of proposal which would attract national labor money and resources, and drive Democratic turn-out which might otherwise sleep through the yawner of an election.

Roll Call: Heartland Resurgence Filing “Suspicious”

Roll Call, scouring through federal campaign finance filings, happened on Heartland Resurgence’s mid-year report, and questioned its veracity.  Heartland Resurgence is a so-called SuperPAC.  Its treasurer is Aaron Willard, formerly with Ann Wagner and now staffing the Grow Missouri effort to override HB253.

Roll Call says that Heartland’s report of a $10,000 check from Expedia’s PAC is inaccurate according Expedia’s filings.  See it here.

It appears that Heartland typo-ed the Expedia PAC instead of the money coming from the corporation itself.

But it’s equally suspicious that Roll Call’s crack reporting team would pluck this committee out for reporting without actually doing the reporting of figuring out the typo.

Bits

Governor Jay Nixon appointed James Klahr as the new executive director of the Missouri Ethics Commission.  Read it here.

It continutes… drip, drip… St. Louis County Council deferred to confirm County Executive Charlie Dooley’s new Police Board nominations.  And Ray Wagner announced he’s exiting the board ASAP.  Read it here.

I find this NYTimes article fascinating.  (Read it here.) It reports on the heavy use of recent college graduates in charter schools, and the fact that these young people don’t see teaching as a career.  It’s more like public service they engage in for a few years before they start their career.  I think a fair amount of the “reformer” “establishment” divide is attributable to the totally different perspectives of the career classroom teachers maybe in their third decade of teaching and the twenty-something principal in the start-up schools.

$5K+Contributions

Missourians for Tim Jones - $10,000 from Pyramid Home Health Services.

Dempsey for Missouri - $6,400 from Greg Hobrock.

Birthdays

Happy birthdays to Rep. John Diehl (48) and Shamed Dogan (35)

Condolences

“Former Sen. Frank Barnitz’s step-daughter, Leslie Ann Fry, passed away tragically on Sunday in an ATV accident.  She was 29 years old and from Rolla, MO.”

Cards of condolences can be sent to:

Frank and Lisa Barnitz

P.O. Box 104

Lake Spring, MO 65532