Wednesday June 6 2018 - Perfect Storm or Tsunami Warning? - Scott to DOLIR? - Roorda Fundys and more...

Perfect Storm or Tsumni Warning?

Lauren Arthur won the Senate 17 special election last night with 59% of the vote.  It was very strong showing in a swing district that Republicans have held for years.  And it ignited debate among political observers about its importance as an indicator of the upcoming midterm elections.

On the one hand, folks were sharing a tweet (see it here) early in the day pointing out the electoral difficulty facing Republicans in Senate 17.  Though Donald Trump won it in 2016, he did so much narrowly (52-47) than other parts of the state.  Furthermore Chris Koster won Senate 17 (52-47) over Eric Greitens, and Jason Kander did very well here (55-45) in his Senate race with Roy Blunt.  In other words this is a classic purple district.

Still Arthur didn’t nose out this race; she exceeded Kander’s total by nine points, winning 59%-40%.

That had one Republican very worried. The blue wave is coming; tonight should be a tsunami warning to Republicans.

However another Republican was disinclined to extrapolate doomsday talk: That race was a perfect storm. Base on his side unhappy with him. Her base energized.

One the Dem side, they were thrilled.  Yet their comments to me seemed to focus on nuts and bolts of the campaign.

One cautioned that folks would want to look at the big picture and miss the on-the-ground factor of the candidate: People will talk about how it's due to the political environment, but it's time they recognize that Lauren Arthur goes about the business of winning elections by massive, massive margins.

And another thought it showed they were maybe beginning to grasp the basics: Clear example of recruiting a good candidate, who worked hard, raised money, and had support of a smart motivated MDP. Dems won't flip the chambers but if House/Senate Committees could learn to execute basics of blocking and tackling - their situation wouldn't be so dire…


I got pelted with complaints about the Secretary of State’s website freezing up and being slow with results.  Here’s Scott Charton jabbing Ashcroft on twitter over it.


Parson Staff Announcement

Governor Mike Parson announced some more staffing moves.  Robert Knodell will serve as Deputy Chief of Staff.  See his note to legislators below.

And Marylyn Luetkemeyer and Kelli Jones are coming from the LG’s office.  They’ll continue to serve Parson as Executive Assistant and Press Secretary.


Knodell Exits HRCC

From: Robert Knodell <>

Date: Mon, Jun 4, 2018 at 9:45 PM

Subject: My situation

Dear Members:

I wanted to let you know that yesterday I stepped aside as Executive Director of HRCC and today assumed a senior-level transitional role in the office of Governor Mike Parson.  I pledge to work extremely hard to do my very best to help ensure a smooth transition that will reassure Missourians and continue to move our state forward.

I’ve poured my heart and my soul into HRCC, and I’ve been involved in Republican House campaigns as a volunteer, an advisor, or with HRCC for a very long time.  I’m proud of our shared record of success on many November election nights.

The HRCC organization is in excellent shape, and your leadership team and the awesome staff we’ve built will keep it that way.  Planning and preparations are on schedule for this election cycle, and operations should function smoothly throughout the near future.  Members of leadership have indicated that over the coming weeks, they will be endeavoring to work with members to ensure that the caucus has the strongest team and personnel in place to ensure a successful cycle.

I covet your prayers and I look forward to having the opportunity to serve you in the future.

Very truly yours,

Robert Knodell

What It Means

It’s a crucial time in the campaign season… two months until the primaries and then a sprint to the November general elections.  To lose Knodell at this time is very big deal.  I spoke to a few people about it who sort of shrugged: Whatcha gonna do? When the governor calls, you gotta go.


Rumorville: Scott to DOLIR

Multiple sources say that Todd Scott is being tapped as the legislative liaison for the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.


There’s a whole bunch of Greitens staffers now who are looking for work or thinking about their next gig.

There are a couple of avenues we may see them take.

First, you might see some of them end up at Axiom Strategies.  It’s a huge firm now playing in races all across the country.  They probably have some spots they could fill and their opportunities aren’t limited to Missouri where the market for young, hungry politicos is potentially flooded with Greiten-ites.

Second, some have legal backgrounds.  And this experience may have soured them on public service at present.  So you might see some end up at law firms.

Finally, of course some will put their Missouri politics expertise to work, joining a lobbying firm or staffing an association or constituency.  In other words, walking the halls.


Roorda in JeffCo

Former Rep. Jeff Roorda is running full blast for Jefferson County Executive as Dems try to retake what the Republicans have conquered over the past few cycles.  Tomorrow night Roorda will have a big fundraiser with a lot of labor heavies hosting.  Names on the invite: Pat White (St. Louis Labor Council), John Stiffler (St. Louis Building Trades), Chuck DeMoulin (JeffCo Labor Club), Tim Meadows (Teamsters Local 600), Dave Cook (UFCW Local 655), and Marty McLimens (Rockwood Labor Club).

And then later this month, he’ll hit the other pool of Democratic money: lawyers.  Governor Jay Nixon has reportedly signed on as a special guest for that fundy to take place at Bruntrager & Billings.


Dunn Nephew Found

On Facebook former Rep. Randy D. Dunn posts:  My family and I would like thank everyone for their prayers and genuine concern over the past few days as we looked for my nephew. I am happy to announce he was found safe late last night. Prayer certainly works, thank you again!


eMailbag on Senate 34

If Rob Schaaf’s pick to replace himself in the senate (Harry Roberts) is bragging that he has gained the dual endorsement of KC Biz PAC, then it’s a pretty slow news day for Roberts… he has less than half the cash on hand that Tony Luetkemeyer has amassed and about 55% of the primary vote comes out of Platte, where Luetkemeyer lives and is backed by the grassroots and elected officials…


Help Wanted

American Association of Orthodontists seeks Regional State Affairs Coordinator. “Under the direction of the Director of Government Affairs: Be responsible for leading and managing the legislative and regulatory strategy in the states within the Coordinator’s region; Set strategy, grow and lead a team of member volunteers, coordinate activities and collaborate with allied associations and lobbying efforts; Be responsible for the monitoring of all legislative and regulatory activity, including proposed and pending legislation/regulation, in the states within the RSAC’s region; Communicate regularly with relevant government officials, including legislators, regulatory board members, and other government employees….” seeks Senior Public Affairs Specialist. “844 million people – about one in nine – lack access to safe water. 2.3 billion people don’t have access to a toilet. We are working every day to change this. We are We’re here to bring water and sanitation to the world. We want to make it safe, accessible and cost-effective because we believe that water is the way to empowering a better life that we can all share in, worldwide. We are an international nonprofit organization based in Kansas City, Missouri that has positively transformed millions of lives around the world through access to safe water and sanitation….  The Sr. Public Affairs Specialist is fundamental to amplifying awareness of and engagement in’s mission and positioning as an entrepreneurial leader that is using smart solutions to solve one of the world’s greatest challenges….”  See it here.


Today’s Events

Fundraiser for Damon Haymer (Dem candidate House 76) at private home Olivette – 6PM.


New Committees

Carolyn McGowan formed a candidate committee (Friends Of Carolyn Cookie Mcgowan For Mo 32Nd) to run for Senate 32 as a Democrat.

Mark Koester formed a candidate committee (Committee To Elect Mark A. Koester) to run for St. Charles County Director of Elections as a Republican.


$5K+ Contributions

A Better Missouri Political Action Committee - $22,750 from Anheuser-Busch Cos.

Missouri Democratic State Committee - $10,000 from Rucker for Missouri.

Missouri Democratic State Committee - $25,000 from Missouri Drive Fund.

Missouri Democratic State Committee - $25,000 from Operating Engineers Local 101 PAC.

Catalyst PAC - $20,500 from Emerson Electric Co.

Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $5,001 from Eigel for Missouri.

Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $5,001 from Citizens for Hoskins.

Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $18,000 from Citizens for Ed Emery.

We Are Missouri - $103,324 from Missouri AFL-CIO General Fund.

We Are Missouri - $6,000 from International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union No 1.


Lobbyists Registrations

Richard McCullough added Missouri Chiropractic Physicians Association; and deleted Missouri Society of Professional Surveyors, Missouri Association of Shelter Workshop Managers, Missouri Association of Area Agencies on Aging, Missouri Psychiatric Association, and Missouri State Chiropractos Association.

Steven Tilley and Thomas Robbins added Big Cattle Co, and Healthcare Management Inc.

Mike Hoey deleted Missouri Catholic Conference.

Lon Lowrey deleted The Beenders Walker Group.

Warren Wood and Brian Leonard deleted Union Electric Co., Dba Amerenue, Ameren Services, Ameren Corp.

Jan Neitzert deleted Missouri Park and Recreation Association.

Alexandra Salsman deleted Missouri Firearms Coalition.

Mike Grote deleted HPRA.

Ross Garber deleted Office of The Governor of Missouri.



Happy birthday to Connie Cierpiot and Ann Brand.