For the Luck

29 11 2016

Jefferson City

Three weeks ago today, the state’s electorate voted to retain Supreme Court Justice Richard Teitelman.

This morning, he was found dead.

If the process to find his replacement can work fast enough, and by “fast enough,” I mean spitting out a recommendation before January 9, then Nixon just might be able to appoint the replacement before the final bell tolls on his time as Governor.





John Hancock Puts the John Hancock On His Resignation Letter

18 11 2016

Jefferson City

John Hancock steps down as MRP head.

This has the fingerprints of Eric Greitens all over it.  I know that Greitens isn’t personally very high on Hancock, and that Hancock was a Catherine Hanaway supporter, so that feeling was mutual.  I don’t think any particular thing is behind it; I think it’s just more of a general animus, though that’s not even the right word.  More like nonchalance.  It might be tempting to think that Greitens, being Jewish, was sensitive to the Danforth-Messenger peddled bullshit that an anti-Semitic whisper campaign that Hancock himself supposedly started caused (the not Jewish) Tom Schweich to commit suicide.  However, it’s not true.  Greitens just isn’t that into Hancock.

Remember, Eric Greitens’s candidacy was the least likely to succeed.  And he’s coming into the job as a drain-the-swamp outsider.  If either Catherine Hanaway or Peter Kindercare had won this thing, Hancock would have stayed on.  But Greitens is an outsider, and Hancock is a long time insider, and ne’er the twain.





Ha Ha, Real Funny

18 11 2016

Jefferson City

Someone played a practical joke on Jason Kander, by nominating him for DNC chair.

Now you’d think that the Democrat who last week came the closest to winning on the statewide ballot would merit some serious consideration.  But he won’t, for the same reason why Howard Dean, a serious candidate and a previous DNC chair who led the organization to the last time its party had two consecutive successful election cycles, 2006 and 2008, won’t be considered.

No diversity Pokemon points!

So, in order to appeal to WCWs, and to demonstrate that the party is starting to get over its diversity first knee jerk agenda, the Democrats are about to give the job to a black Muslim.





Turnout

10 11 2016

Jefferson City

Kander’s office announced today that turnout was 67%, slightly higher than the 66% in 2012 but not a record, which was 69% in 2008.





Eric Greitens

9 11 2016

Jefferson City

It’s the biggest improbability and shock of Missouri politics in a very long time, and I mean the whole package, both his primary and general wins.  Add to it that I counted him as a no-chance non-entity several times, and because of RTW and the unions, gave him no chance in the general.

It means RTW will happen, though like I’ve been saying, it certainly won’t be the end of the world for organized labor, because I think there are many and more important factors behind this than open versus closed shop.

The state party establishment isn’t exactly welcoming him with open arms, because he, along with Attorney General-elect Josh Hawley (and, as you recall, Hawley was my only affirmative vote for a person other than Trump yesterday), have promised to drain the state legislative swamp.  With Amendment 2 passing, which restores campaign funding limits, and with Greitens/Hawley threatening to wield a big stick when it comes to all the questionable money and quasi-money that gets passed around in Jefferson City for four and a half months every year and other times, my line of work is about to become a much browner field.  With legislative term limits deterring the power of incumbency, (John Diehl’s power was an anomaly in the term limits era), Missouri politics are definitely swinging in the direction of executive branch focused.  What it also means is that I’m really ramping up my exit strategy, getting my ducks in a row to start up my startup, because I don’t think I’m long as a lobbyist.

In other downballot statewide news, there were no State Senate party flips, and Republicans will maintain a better than 2-1 supermajority in the House.  Because the statewide races were a red team sweep, this means Russ Carnahan lost, meaning the last chance to restore the Carnahan dynasty was thwarted, Jay Ashcroft won, meaning another dynasty is rising, and former Channel 4 anchor Robin Smith lost.  Of the downballot statewide Republicans, I think Treasurer-Elect Eric Schmitt has the best future prospects.

Tony Messenger co-peddled the Great Mythical Anti-Semitic Whisper Campaign of 2015 paranoia after the Tom Schweich suicide.  In the end, the Republican Governor-Elect is Jewish.





Irrelevance

9 11 2016

Clayton

Hillary Clinton won Missouri’s most populous county by 16 points and its second most populous county by 17 points.  Donald Trump won the whole state by 19 points.

St. Louis County, meet irrelevance.  Irrelevance, meet St. Louis County.

Jackson County, meet irrelevance.  Irrelevance, meet Jackson County.

Emblematic of lethargic black turnout, St. Louis City only cast 129k votes yesterday, compared to 144k votes in 2012 and 158k in 2008.  Furthermore, HRC’s percentage there (79%) was a bit down over Obama’s two showings (83% and 84%).

A trend that I noticed after 2008 was how Missouri was getting redder and redder than the country over time.  I subtracted Missouri’s popular vote margin from the national, and discovered that Missouri was 3% redder than the country in 2000, 5% redder in 2004 and 8% redder in 2008.  In 2012, it popped to 13% redder.  Assume the national popular vote this year is a tie, then Missouri was 19% redder than the country in this cycle, which means the trend is continuing.

A lot of Ozarks counties that Bill Clinton won easily and Gore, Kerry and 2008’s version of Obama either won or were competitive in went for Trump with 75-80%.  A few went over 80%, with the top being 85% in Bollinger County, one west of Cape, where Rush Limbaugh’s distant ancestors settled when they first came to what would become Missouri.

I knew Trump would win the state by a bigger margin than Romney’s nine-point win over Obama, but I was thinking more like 12, if the wind was really to his back, 15.  But I would have never dreamed that it would be one short of twenty.





I’m Getting a Feeling In My Bones

7 11 2016

Jefferson City

I’m not predicting it, I’m still holding to my year and a half long prediction.  Because a big part of the Trump constituency in the state is also union or union supporter or union leaning, and they don’t want RTW.  Which means that Trump’s coattails won’t redound to Eric Greitens, as I’ve been stating that nationally and generically Trump won’t have coattails.

But, today, for the first time this season, I got the sense that there is a substantial even if not majority chance that Chris Koster might not be delivering an acceptance speech tomorrow night.  What I mean by that is that, in the past two cycles, the Republican nominees (Kenny Hulshof in 2008, Dave Spence in 2012) seemed to have final week momentum, but in the end, Nixon blew ’em both out of the water.  However, this time, I’m getting the sense that Eric Greitens’s final week momentum is for real.

If what Koster delivers tomorrow is a concession speech, he’ll kick himself in the ass for the rest of his life for not openly campaigning on RTW.