Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Rush for Fundraising

Speaker Steve Tilley gifted Dems an ongoing fundraising opportunity by sticking with plans to add Rush Limbaugh’s bust to the rotunda.  He could have easily reversed course and left the honor to Tim Jones down the road in a non-election year without the current firestorm.  Instead it’s full speed ahead – for Dem fundraisers.


Planned Parenthood Dives into the Fundraising Pool

From their email blast:

“You are not going believe this: Speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives, Steve Tilley, is planning to honor Rush Limbaugh in the Missouri Capitol’s “Hall of Famous Missourians” this year.


“Speaker Tilley thinks Rush Limbaugh should be on display in the People’s Capitol alongside real heroes like Mark Twain, Walt Disney, Harry Truman, George Washington Carver, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Sacajawea, and Josephine Baker.


“Given Rush Limbaugh’s recent comments calling Sandra Fluck a "prostitute" and "slut" for advocating for birth control, honoring him in the Missouri Capitol is obviously unacceptable.


“There is still time for Speaker Tilley and House leaders to reconsider this outrageous plan.”



Where are the Supremes?

Observers are feeling frustrated that the Missouri Supreme Court has yet to rule on the congressional maps.  While the limbo continues, Dems have reason to be pessimistic.  The three Democratic-appointed judges who recused themselves were replaced by two Dem-appointed judges and one Republican-appointed judge.  The effect was to flip the majority form a 4-3 Dem weight to 3-4 Republican weight.



New Candidate Filings

Former state representative Charlie Norr filed to run again in House 132.  The incumbent there is Rep. Melissa Leach.  Leach beat Norr in 2010 (House 137) 52.5% - 47.5%.  But the new House district is a bit more Democratic – this election cycle is not expected to be as heavily Republican as two years ago.



Becky Ruth filed to run as a Republican in House 114.  She’ll face Democratic sprig TJ McKenna, cousin to Sen. Ryan McKenna.



McFarlane Duncan filed to run as a Democrat in House 77, joining Chris Elliott in that primary.  House 77 was abandoned by Rep. Karla May as she has chosen to run for reelection in House 84.



David Knisley filed to run as a Democrat in House 63.  This is a safe Republican district (Wentzville) without an incumbent.




Among the still un-filed is Michael Butler – LA to Sen. Robin Wright Jones – who has a twitter, a website and a campaign committee to run in House 79.



Rep. Tishaura Jones’ District Suvey

From her Capitol Report:

“Recently, I surveyed voters in the district to get their opinion on right-to-work, education, finance and the economy, health care, and government. Over 69% were against Missouri becoming a right-to-work state, whereas voters are split on continuing teacher tenure; 45.7% yes, and 46.6% no. There is overwhelming support to allow students of unaccredited school districts to be allowed to transfer to nearby accredited districts, over 57%. However, over 55% of voters feel that the authorization of tax credits for private donations for K-12 scholarships would unfairly redistribute public dollars. When it comes to charter schools, 54% of voters support statewide expansion. When asked about eliminating the state's income tax, over 80% of voters are in opposition, which will lead to an increase in sales tax. Regarding term limits, over 57% of voters are against elimination of term limits for legislators, however, over 44% support an increase in the total years served in either chamber to 12 years versus the current limit of 8 years.  Last but not least, over 67% of voters say leave things as they are, do not eliminate or modify the Missouri Nonpartisan Court Plan.”



The Senate Week Ahead

From twitter-feed of Majority Caucus Communications Maestra, @FarrahFite:


Floor Leader Tom Dempsey says the Senate will work on a resolution dealing with bringing more transparency to the redistricting process Tuesday.


SB439 dealing with #MO's prevailing wage laws will be debated as early as Tuesday afternoon. Pro Tem Rob Mayer, the bill's sponsor, says it would change the way prevailing wage is calculated to make sure taxpayers aren't being fleeced. The bill would use a federal survey to determine the rates and remove maintenance from prevailing wage. The bill would also exempt public projects in declared natural disaster areas, helping #MO communities rebuild w/rates taxpayers can afford.


Dempsey said the Senate will also consider HB1219 dealing with employment law Wednesday. The Senate passed its counterpart, SB592, earlier.


Dempsey says @MissouriSenate Thursday will work on final up-and-down votes on Senate bills, including the "Justice Reinvestment Act"(SB669)


Mayer says as time elapses, compromise and consensus on education bills becomes more difficult to achieve.


Mayer says Senate is not in favor of cutting funding for the blind and is likely to restore those changes when the budget arrives in Senate.




Yesterday the House Budget committee spent approximately ten hours slogging through the entire budget.  Wednesday they’re scheduled to vote it out of committee.



The disconnect:  In Georgia they’re going to ban illegal immigrants from college (Here); In Silicon Valley, they’re taking matters into their own hands (Here).



Matt Teter resigned as Democratic Party ED, following his domestic altercation.  Read Post-Dispatch’s account Here.



President Barack Obama will give the commencement address at a Joplin high school on the one-year anniversary of the tornado.  Governor Jay Nixon issued a press release saying he would still attend the event anyway.



Again, on the Senate floor yesterday, no love lost between Sens. Kevin Engler and Rob Schaaf.



Today is Super Tuesday.  Please don’t let it end…




One of my favorite events – the Missouri Healthcare Association’s Texas Hold’em… Capitol Plaza.  Reception at 6pm; cards at 8pm.



Lobbyists’ Principals Changes

From the Pelopidas website:


James C. Bowers, Jr. added Mark & Jane O’Dell, and MD Management.

Jacob D Otto added Leo/Frederick & Associates LLC.

David Overfelt added Solarlink.

Jorgen Schlemeier and Jeff Brooks added Missourians for Responsible Government Inc.

Jen Moore deleted St. Charles County Association of Realtors.

Phil Wright and Luann Madsen deleted RAI Services Company, and Gallagher Consultants LLC.



$5K+ Contributions

Stand Up Missouri - $50,000 from National Installment Lenders.




Happy birthdays to Kit Bond (73), Chuck Simino, Todd Patterson and  RCGA’s Christine Page (26).