Wednesday, January 25, 2012

No More Appt Footsie for Nixon?

Pro Tem Rob Mayer refuses to accept Governor Jay Nixon’s withdrawal  (again) of UM Curators appointments.  Columbia Tribune has the story Here.


Pull-Quote: “After lawmakers adjourned, Nixon gave Van Matre an interim appointment, allowing him to act as a curator pending confirmation when lawmakers returned.


“During the special session in September, Nixon asked lawmakers to confirm his nominees, but Mayer refused to take them up. Again Nixon withdrew the nomination of Van Matre, waiting for lawmakers to adjourn the special session before again giving him an interim appointment.


“Van Matre's latest nomination ran into difficulty last week when he was asked about his views of Republican legislative leadership. In 2007, Van Matre wrote an opinion piece for the Tribune accusing the GOP of wanting to turn Missouri into an Iran-style theocracy.”



Waiting for the Sanity Caucus

Although the Senate is off to a relatively fast start this session, the tensions between factions and senators hasn’t dissipated at all from last session.


One observer on yesterday – “Things really blew up today on the floor and in the halls. I don’t know if it had to do with this solar anomaly or what but it was just flat strange. Everyone was at

each other’s throats.”


Still reeling from a faltering session last year and a special session failure, expectations remain depressed among the lobbying corps.  But looking to 2013, the expectations are rising.


It’s next January that a so-called “sanity caucus” is set to arrive, according to one optimistic player.  Driving the scenario will be Sen. Mike Parson as floor leader with a half-dozen of his classmates from the House firmly behind him.   And Sen. Tom Dempsey as pro tem, leading the head-down, worker-bees of the Senate: Sens. Kurt Schaefer, Eric Schmitt, David Pearce.


Meanwhile you’ll see that some of the serious senators who have been quiet learning the process will come alive on the side of getting things done: Sens. Ron Richard, Jay Wasson and Mike Kehoe.


The Republican road-blockers Sen. Jason Crowell and Luann Ridgeway will be gone. As will the Dem’s tactical genius Sen. Victor Callahan.


This person says that those who have been perceived as trouble-makers will be dissolved of their gang.  Sen. Will Kraus who fell into the filibuster four has been extricated from their influence.  Brian Nieves may never be an impact player, but he’ll understand that gumming up the process endangers his political future.  Sen. Jane Cunningham “was never as unreasonable as people pretend.”  Sen. Jim Lembke will be allowed to speechify without consequence.  And Sen. Rob Schaaf will find himself isolated.


The problem with this forecast of course is that it’s always easier to imagine the impact of the absence of current influences than imagine the impact of unknown future influences.  Translation: we’ll see.



What’s the AG’s Redistricting Play?

As the congressional map works its way through the courts again, one source grumbles that Solicitor General Jim Layton with the attorney general’s office has consistently faltered.


According to this source, his refusal / inability to defend the map has led to the current vulnerability of the map.  And it’s said that he was the source of the appellate commission’s ill-advised decision to withdraw their first map and submit a second map.


This source though wonders whether Layton took these actions on his own volition or was acting on signals from either AG Chris Koster or Governor Jay Nixon in an effort to give Dems a better chance in the courts.



Bad Month

Missouri Journal reports that Missouri had the worst in the nation employment losses for the month of December.  Read it Here.   I assume the month to month data is exceedingly volatile. The raw data from the Labor Bureau is Here (Table D).



2012 Watch

Raymond Kinney started a campaign committee to run in House 51 as a Democrat.  House 51 is the Democratic leaning district from which Rep. Denny Hoskins moving.  Kinney ran against Rep. Stanley Cox in 2010 in the current House 118, and got thumped taking only 29.1% to Cox’s 66.3%.  The likely Republican nominee in House 51 is Dean Dohrman.




I incorrectly named the date of the MHCA Legislative Reception and Texas Hold’em Event.  It will be Tuesday, March 6, 2012 at 6pm and 8pm respectively.




On the House Map Lawsuit

Lobbyist: “I don’t have a dog in this fight, but… the claimed flaws of the House map would need to plow new constitutional ground in order to succeed. Rivers are part of the district, it doesn't start on one side and then restart on the other, there is no issue there.


“The constitutional test for one man one vote in state legislative districts is plus or minus 5%. It doesn’t matter if better maps could have been drawn, only that these maps meet the requirements. Remember, there are competing issues that have to be resolved, specifically communities of interest need to be considered. For example, If district 1 has 250 people more than ideal while its neighbor district 2 has 500 less than ideal, that doesn’t mean the line should have been drawn differently. That might have caused district 1 to split a town or it might have required an entire different district to split a community of interest.”



Lobbyists’ Principals Changes

From the Pelopidas website:


Annette G Driver added Bennie Lewis and Associates.

Michael Hanna added Veritec Solutions LLC.

Doug Nelson added Office of Administration.

Catherine E Nugent added Missouri American Water and Willis Pendleton LLC.

Whitney ODaniel added Missouri Whitetail Breeders and Hunting Ranch Association.

Justin Opalenski, Angy Herrera, and Gabriel Ovanessian added Brevan Howard Asset Management LLP.

Erika Leonard, John Parris and Kim Tuttle deleted Husch Blackwell Sanders LLP.



$5K+ Contributions

Nothing reported yesterday.




Happy birthday to former state representative Michael Corcoran (49).