If the rumor is true then there is a bomb ticking in the general assembly… redistricting… with the potential to blow away many familiar faces.
The current rumor is that the appellate commission will be announcing the new districts this week, perhaps on Friday. And, equally important, it’s also said that the maps will be remarkably unfriendly to incumbents.
Why This Could Be Earth-Shaking
Let’s start with the second half first.
There have been hints of this all along, but the rumor – and it is only a rumor – is that the appellate commission has drawn the new districts with little regard to the residence of incumbents. They have started in population centers across the state, and with rational looking lines, attempted to create the most compact districts they could, taking into account issues like majority minority districts, but not considering the partisan voter indexes or (to say it again) the residences of current incumbents.
As a result, if this rumor is correct, there will be many cases where incumbents are placed into the same districts.
Now back to the first part, which takes on greater significance.
If the appellate commission releases the new maps anytime this week, they will be doing so before the one year mark until the next election… November 6. Therefore, residency requirements apply! That requirement – according to the constitution – is for legislators to live in the district for a full year before the election.
In other words, in this scenario, some legislators will find that they are no longer living in their current districts, and/or have been grouped with another incumbent (friendly or unfriendly) and are unable to run in their old district.
If the appellate commission doesn’t release the maps this week, but waits until after November 6, the residency requirements are relaxed. According to the constitution representatives could then run in any district within a county they now represent, and senators could run in either their old or new district regardless of their residency.
If both parts of this rumor are true, there will be some massive upheavals – more in the House than the Senate – and great turmoil.
For example, and this is only a hypothetical to illustrate, someone like Rules Chair John Diehl is expected to ascend to floor leader in 2013. However because of the placement of his current district, if the commission turns a blind eye to practical political realities, he could find himself paired with another incumbent. One such possibility would be a district that mostly consists of Rep. Rick Stream’s district. Stream is considered a possible future budget chair. Only one could survive in that scenario. Another scenario would find him in a district that is largely that of Rep. Sue Allen’s district. Allen is in leadership now, but again, one of them would have to end (or pause) their political career.
These types of dilemmas would confront incumbents of both parties across the state – if this rumor is true.
That’s not all. One person I spoke to feels strongly that the process used by the commission is very favorable to the Republicans. As explained above, it’s not favorable to Republican incumbents. But this source thinks it will be a map with lines hospitable to Republicans, eliminating any chance for the Democrats’ to regain the majority over the next decade.
Tick… tick… tick…
Kehoe Sells Auto Dealership
Sen. Mike Kehoe unloads his dealership… Read it Here.
Pull quote: He said his reasons for selling are personal. “My long time farm manager is retiring so I will be a little bit more active in the farm and trying to run that business on a day to day basis. But my wife and I will still be in this community.”
Two Fine People
Shawn Furey and Melissa DeStefano tied the knot over the weekend. Furey’s from St. Louis and DeStefano is from Kansas City. They met in Jefferson City where he worked for Sen. Eric Schmitt and she worked for Sen. Scott Rupp.
On the dance floor… Sens. Schmitt, Rupp and John Lamping. Senator-turned-lobbyist Mike Gibbons… Kinder’s Brian Bunten, Engler’s Bradley Green, Cunningham’s Kit Crancer, Lamping’s Holly Cheuk, Comcast’s Tom Krewson, Time Warner’s Jarad Falk, MHA’s David Hale, MO Primary Assn’s Danny O’Neil, and lobbyists-at-large Brent Evans and Trent Watson.
For those still on a World Series buzz, stay tuned… Cardinals have scheduled a 9am press conference…
Lobbyist Principal Changes
From the Pelopidas website:
David Winton deleted Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center.
One Zoo for All - $104,956 from Friends of the Zoo Inc.
One Zoo for All - $20,000 from Garmin International Inc.
Rep. Paul Quinn turns 68 today.