Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Greitens Scandal Saga

Calls for the governor to resign from Republican lawmakers.  More tapes.  Delivered to the FBI. See a KCStar round-up article here.

It sounds terrible, and yet given the governor’s precarious position, it actually wasn’t as bad a day for him as I expected.

I had heard there’d be ten resignation calls; there were only five. (More may come today). I thought maybe there’d be some new allegations to come forward; these tapes, though, probably just flesh out his misdeeds with the hairdresser.

I mention this to one long-time capitol observer and he texted me a dose of reality: the governor was forced to issue another apology; he’s in hiding and hasn’t been seen since the State of the State speech; and the story continues to get national attention, blowing his beloved national profile to bits.

And then there’s what he didn’t mention: reporters are working on new leads, and angles to the scandal.


Q&A #1: Who Could Get the Gavel?

Rep. Marsha Haefner is as steady headed a legislator as you’ll find in the capitol.  Together with Reps. Nate Walker, Kathie Conway and Steve Cookson, her call for Governor Eric Greitens to resign carries some weight.  However the governor’s team is emphatic that despite the drip drip drip of depressing news, he’s not resigning. He’s dug in, they say.

A House investigation is the most likely compromise in this brewing Republican civil war. It’s a way to assure conservatives that you’re not turning a blind eye to the governor’s behavior; it lets women voters know that you take the blackmail allegations seriously; it gives the governor a path to move beyond the scandal; and it’s consistent with most everyone’s statements when the news broke.

Assuming the House does begin an investigation, Speaker Todd Richardson will either refer it to a committee or form a special committee.  Most folks think he would form a special committee, and a big question for him is: who do you hand that gavel to?

Here are three names that make sense when gaming this scenario out: Jay Barnes, Kevin Corlew, and Shawn Rhoads.  All three are considered tough and fair.  Barnes and Corlew are attorneys and Rhoads has a law enforcement background.  Barnes and Rhoads each chair a Rules Committee; Corlew chairs Judiciary.

Barnes was one of Greitens’ early backers in the legislature.  However his willingness to call for John Diehl’s resignation gives him the credibility of being willing to make tough calls.


Quarters Of Note


Democrat Nicole Galloway raised $232,306; spent $60,541 and has $834,583 on-hand. Republican David Wasinger raised $109,000; spent $20,715; and has $734,139 on-hand. And Rep. Paul Curtman raised $50,145; spent $2,607; and has $51,075 on-hand.  For Curtman, a $50K quarter was a nice sign of financial life.  But with the primary about six months away, the essential equation hasn’t changed.  Without a deep-pocketed third party, he won’t have the resources to compete statewide with Wasinger.  Galloway’s team should be cheered by the Greitens scandal, and his determination to “be resilient” and limp along regardless of the damage it does to his party this year.

Senate 16

Justin Brown, the son of incumbent term-limited Sen. Dan Brown, raised $19,700; spent $7,228; and has $200,118 on-hand.  Rep. Diane Franklin raised $6,025; spent $7,967; and has $11,481 on-hand. And former Sen. Jane Cunningham raised $0; spent $596; and has $19,464 on-hand.

Senate 18

As pre-announced Cindy O’Laughlin raised $51,725; spent $2,544; and has $204,014 on-hand.  What she lacks in name ID, she’s making up in COH.  Rep. Lindell Shumake raised $1,325; spent $685; and has $11,315 on-hand. His lackluster fundraising is making him a non-factor in this race.  Rep. Nate Walker raised $10,800; spent $20; and has $10,779 on-hand.  Despite weak fundraising, he has some strengths: his long history in this part of the state together with his ability to get media.  And Rep. Craig Redmon raised $49,045; spent $7,595; and has $77,398 on-hand.  That’s a good quarter with a low burn-rate.  One issue for Redmon though: $12,100 from Lewis County Central Republican Committee is over the contribution limit.

Senate 34

Rep. Nick Marshall raised $0; spent $428; and has $18,793 on-hand.  He continues to show no indications that he’s actually running.  Meanwhile Tony Luetkemeyer, husband of the governor general counsel, raised $101,900; spent $1,005; and has $296,110 on-hand.  He’s trailed by Commissioner Harry Roberts raised $44,050; spent $13,170; and has $102,919 on-hand.  We’ll see Roberts tries to use the governor unpopularity against Luetkemeyer.

Democrat Martin Rucker Jr. raised $19,815; spent $3,264; and has $17,355 on-hand.  It’s been asked if the former NFL player might have enough personal wealth to self-fund.  I’ve been told that’s not an option for him.


For those following the Leadership for America saga (see it here).  Its LRT Global Opportunities reported a $111,310 loss for the committee.


Top 30 COH – January Quarter

Greitens For Missouri - $2.7 million.

Citizens for Steve Stenger - $2.4 million.

Hawley for Missouri - $1 million.

We Are Missouri - $1 million.

Eastern MO Laborers Education & Benevolent Fund - $910,842

Mantovani For STL - $905,844

Nicole Galloway for Missouri - $834,583

Leadership For America - $751,324

Citizens For Wasinger - $734,139

Friends of Gregory FX Daly - $595,906

Pipefitters Assoc Local Union #533 - $574,208

Schupp for Senate - $569,651

Supporters of Health Research and Treatments - $494,002

Callahan for Missouri - $491,688

Carpenters Help In the Political Process (CHIPP) - $474,603

Home Building Industry Political Action Committee - $462,860

MO National Education Assoc PAC - $461,316

Missouri Realtors PAC Inc - $444,700.

Health PAC - $395,206

House Republican Campaign Committee Inc - $353,473

Committee to Elect Scott Taylor - $347,939

Friends Of Eric Burlison - $343,289

Onder for Missouri - $323,370

Midwest Region Laborers’ Political League Education Fund - $322,831

Friends Of Todd Richardson - $309,373

Citizens for Schatz - $301,716

Luetkemeyer For Senate - $296,110

Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $295,720

Friends Of Jamilah Nasheed - $288,534

MO Republican Party - $286,510


Code Day

Get you mind of the Greitens scandal and learn something new today… MO Capitol Code Day! Join computer science students from around Missouri to do an Hour of Code… 3PM, House Hearing Room 2.  Sponsored by and LaunchCode


Hough Contra Arnott

Greene County in-fighting continues.  The News-Leader has the story here. “In July, Greene County Sheriff Jim Arnott asked the Missouri State Highway Patrol to investigate County Commissioner Lincoln Hough over an alleged failure to pay personal property taxes on his cattle. Hough, a cattle farmer and former state representative who joined the commission a year ago, said the request for an investigation is part of ongoing efforts by Arnott to intimidate him. Along with other examples, Hough cited an incident in September when he was pulled over by Arnott… The highway patrol eventually declined to investigate Hough because he didn't break any laws. Hough said — and records show — he pays property taxes on all his cows and farm equipment every year…”


New Committees

Joplin Fraternal Order Of Police Political Action Committee was formed.  Its treasurer is Shawn Dodson.

Progress For Wildwood PAC was formed.  Its treasurer is David Wilson.


Help Wanted

St. Louis Housing Authority seeks General Counsel.  “The General Counsel serves as the chief legal advisor to the Board of Commissioners, the Executive Director and all Department Directors on all legal matters involving or relating to the Authority. These matters include litigation, public housing, Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCVP), HUD rules and regulations, landlord and tenant issues, fair housing issues, ordinance violations, risk management, compliance, real estate transactions, development, contracts and procurement, personnel, employment, labor relations, relevant local and federal statutes, inter-agency issues and other administrative functions… Salary $110,182 - $118,147…”  See it here.


Lobbyists Registrations

Jeff Pittman added St. Louis Community College.

Rochelle Reeves added Missouri Lottery Commission.

Russ Tuttle added The Stop Trafficking Project.


$5K+ Contributions

Raise Up Missouri - $25,000 from United Food and Commercial Workers International Union AFL-CIO CLC.

Missourians for Patient Care - $50,000 from Missourians for Patient Care.



Happy birthday to Sen. Mike Kehoe.