Thursday, December 8, 2011

Baker for LG?

The Judy Baker rumors are back, and sounding firmer than ever.

 

We’ll see what comes of it, but one source confidently confides that Baker will tender her resignation as the Department of Health and Human Services’ Regional Director on December 16.  That’d be an important milestone because she can’t campaign while she’s on the federal payroll.  Baker’s region includes Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska and Missouri.  It put her on the front lines of the battle over the divisive federal health care law.

 

The rumor now is that Baker is planning a run for lieutenant governor.  In fact a second source shares that Baker and Susan Montee “had a sit-down” though the product of that tete-a-tete is unknown.

 

Baker’s position to help implement “Obamacare” makes her match up with incumbent Peter Kinder almost necessarily a referendum on that legislation despite its irrelevance to the position of LG.

 

 

Lager for LG!

In different press interviews (the Beacon Tuesday Here; and AP yesterday Here), Sen. Brad Lager, thumps his chest and declares that he’s in the lieutenant governor’s race.

 

If Kinder stays in the race – with his ample name ID and $1.5 million in the bank – he beats Lager.  But there are some who believe that Kinder is not excited about the race and may be looking for an exit.  Still others insist he’s in until the end this time.

 

 

Ridgeway for LG?

Meanwhile Sen. Luann Ridgeway continues to fundraise, having not abandoned the possibility that she too will run.  It’s as hard to see a path to victory for Ridgeway as it is for Lager.

 

 

Map Bits

Rep. Chris Kelly will move out of the House 50 district into which he was drawn and settle in House 45.  That’s Rep. Mary Still’s new district, but she’s expected to be taking on Sen. Kurt Schaefer.

 

Former state representative Vicki Englund will be moving out of House 96 and into House 94.  Thus Rep. Mike Leara looks safe in 96 (it’s a 60-40 Republican district), and Rep. Cloria Brown will have to fight off Englund in the new 94th.  It’s Dem-lean district.  Englund beat Brown in 2008; Brown won the 2010 rematch.  Here comes the rubber match.

 

Sen. David Pearce will run in Senate 21.  It’s unclear though whether he will have a primary or not.  So far the guess is that he will… from Rep. Mike McGhee.

 

In House 53 (Lafayette County), Glen Kolkmeyer will be the Republican candidate.   He’s a small businessman.  This should be a competitive district though if Dems can find a good candidate.

 

And former state representative Hope Whitehead is planning to run in St. Louis City’s House 84 district.   That would take away one pressure valve from House 87’s pairing of Reps. Susan Carlson and Stacey Newman.  The other option is for one of them to move south into the Maplewood district of House 83.

 

 

The Toughest Job in the Building?

In the current environment of hostility for the judiciary branch, the toughest job in the Capitol this session might fall to Besty Ledgerwood AuBuchon who will be taking over the job of Commission Counsel, previously filled by Dan O’Hearn.   That means, in addition to other duties, she’ll be the supreme court’s lobbyist in the building.  She comes to the courts from the powerhouse lobbying firm of Gamble and Schlemeier.

 

 

The More Deliberate Body

While the House rages, senators are more tempered in their perspective on the redistricting map and the need for judicial reform.  If America’s history is any guide, it’s the upper body which stands to defend an independent judiciary when it’s attacked.  Samuel Chase, FDR’s attempt to pack the court… I can almost imagine the history-filled filibusters now.

 

 

After the Interim is Gone

Look for Speaker Steve Tilley to extend Rep. Jay Barnes’ interim Mamtek investigatory committee into the new legislative session.  And then some legislation will likely be forthcoming.  One point of consensus seems to be that DED should be required to share all relevant information with local development officials.

 

 

Tweet of the Night

Nasheed60 Jamilah Nasheed

South St. Louis is my new hang out and the voters there are very nice!!! Stay tune!;-)

 

 

MOScout News

I will be doing a round of presentations looking ahead to the 2012 elections with special attention to the new districts.  I will also cover the statewide races and the next legislative session.

 

Monday, December 19 – St. Louis, 8am

Tuesday, December 20 – Kansas City, 8am

Wednesday, December 21 – Jefferson City, 1:30pm

 

Each attendee will receive a booklet (approx. 200 pgs) with demographic information and early analysis on every district. The cost is $40 for subscribers. RSVP to dave@moscout.com.

 

 

Lobbyist Principal Changes

From the Pelopidas website:

 

John E Bardgett Jr, Brian Millner, John Parris and Kim Tuttle added GIPA.

Mike Lodewegen added Missouri Association of School Administrators and Missouri Association of Elementary School Principals.

 

 

$5K+ Contributions

Missourians for Fair Taxation - $100,000 from Missouri Association of REALTORS.

Jay Nixon for Missouri - $10,000 from Lawrence Group Inc.

Missourians for Crowell - $10,000 from Noranda Aluminum Inc.

 

 

Birthdays

Happy birthday to Patrick Bonnot.

 

Tomorrow: former state senator Jeff Smith (38).