Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Senate 24: Dems Set to Start

The peerless John Combest links this morning to a St. Louis Beacon story about Senate 24.  In it, Jo Mannies reports that Rep. Jill Schupp will hold her kick-off next month with special guest Chris Koster.  And the article also reiterates the on-going speculation that incumbent John Lamping may not run for re-election.   He has yet to decide, in effect freezing out Republicans from lining up a successor.

Meanwhile Koster – the standard bearer-in-waiting for Dems – is lending his name to Schupp to solidify her as the Democrat’s nominee.  This heightens the odds that the Democrats will avoid the kind of primary (Sam PageBarbara Fraser) which drained resources and allowed a Lamping squeaker win in 2010.  (Lamping won with 51% of the vote).

 

The court redistricting numbers on Senate 24 have it as a 53% Democratic Performance Index.  But Republicans are quick to note two other facts.  First, Lamping won the old Senate 24 which was a 59% DPI, so the district has become considerably more hospitable to a Republican candidate.  And second, the DPI varies significantly between a presidential election year and an off-cycle year. 

In other words, Lamping’s 2010 victory probably did not represent a ouperformance of the index by ten points.  But maybe more like six points.  And the lean-Democratic DPI now may be more of a toss-up in 2014.

Finally, it’s important to note that 2010 was a strong Republican year which may or may not reoccur in 2014.

This is a possible pick-up for Dems.

Holsman’s Five Lessons in the Senate

From Sen. Jason Holsman’s end-of-year Capitol Report…

1. Your input matters - I serve you best when I know how best to serve you

The 7th Senatorial district is a diverse district…. While no elected official will ever be able to make everyone happy, when debating contentious issues in the Senate, it is always good to hear from home. An email, a phone call or a  personal visit can help reinforce positions during floor debate.

2. Leadership is action not position - partisanship is not the controlling factor

The Senate passes legislation as a body based on coalition building and reasoning out the intended and unintended consequences. Any Senator in the chamber, from either party, can change minds through floor debate by being prepared and persuasive. For all the undue paid lobbying efforts to influence legislation in the capitol, the direct action of educating and informing fellow members is the most effective.

3. Keeping your word is everything - A Senator's commitment is more valuable than

gold, don't just give it away without being certain of what your buying

We all want to make people happy. Everyday legislators make choices on which side of an issue to take. Inevitably there will be a number of lobbyists, constituents and interest groups who will leverage their relationships to produce the desired vote. Many will try to be the first on an issue to get a commitment. But, there are always two sides to every story, sometimes three and four sides. Legislators who decide where they are before getting all the information often end up between a rock and a hard place.

4. Legislation takes time, but that's the point - Rules and traditions matter

It can be frustrating for advocates and legislators to spend countless hours on a particular issue only to have the measure not pass through the process. Our system of representation was not created for maximum efficiency. It should be difficult to make new laws, any and all proposed changes deserve to be fully vetted openly and with scrutiny.  The Missouri Senate has a long list of rules, formal and informal, which have been preserved assembly after assembly. These rules and traditions help maintain a functional organization that fosters open lines of communication between members representing a diverse range of ideological priorities.

5. Relationships are paramount to the Senate's work on big issues

The Senate is built on mutual respect. There are only 34 of us representing 6 million citizens. During this session spending personal time outside of the chamber with my colleagues has helped develop genuine friendships on both sides of the aisle…

 

Bits

Missouri Times and Eli Yokley parted ways.  Yokley will resume his PoliticMO site, and Missouri Times named Ashley Jost as their new executive editor.  Missouri Times will publish its paper twice a month now with the legislative session over.

Post-Dispatch’s Bill McClellan takes the contrary opinion and argues against lowering blood alcohol levels… see it here.

Help Wanted

Missouri House has an opening for an applications developer for its information systems.  See it here.

Cooperating School Districts of St. Louis want a director for its CharacterPLUS character education program.  See it here.

St. Charles County seeks “Associate County Counselor.”  See it here.

The Missourian is looking for a manager editor to its Warren County Record paper.  See it here.

Lobbyist Registrations

From the Pelopidas website:

Jeffrey W. Craver added Cypress State Advocacy LLC.

Melissa Roberts added Partnership for Technology Innovation.

Rob Monsees, Steve Tilley and Scott Zajac deleted Advantage Capital Partners.

Richard C Wiles deleted National Council on Compensation Insurance.

Birthdays

Happy birthday to former Reps. Cloria Brown (71), and Glenn Klippenstein (76), and Schaaf’s chief of staff Chris Dunn.