Politically Speaking: Rep. Razer on tax cut talk and bringing 'balance' to GOP-heavy legislature | St. Louis Public Radio

Politically Speaking: Rep. Razer on tax cut talk and bringing 'balance' to GOP-heavy legislature

Feb 12, 2018

On the latest edition of Politically Speaking, St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies welcome Greg Razer to the program for the first time.

Razer, a Democrat, represents a portion of Kansas City in the Missouri House. He was first elected to his post in 2016, winning a primary and general election with no opposition.

A native of Cooter, Missouri, Razer moved to Kansas City after attending the University of Missouri-Columbia. While he was at Mizzou, Razer had the honor of being the school’s mascot, Truman the Tiger, during sporting and student activity events.

Ultimately, Razer spent eight years as a deputy regional director for U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill. He was responsible for a large part of western Missouri, including rural outposts in the state’s northwest and central counties.

Razer is a member of the House Budget Committee and the House Higher Education Committee. He was also a member of a House-Senate task force that is recommending raising Missouri’s gasoline and diesel taxes.

Here’s what else Razer had to say during the show:

  • He is skeptical of various tax cut proposals floating through the General Assembly. Despite the fact the state has low unemployment, Missouri’s budget still has problems — which he says are the result of several decades of tax cuts.
  • He was critical last week of Gov. Eric Greitens for declining to back a gasoline or fuel tax increase. Before the governor’s comments to the Missouri Press Association, Razer said it’s time to give the Missouri Department of Transportation “the resources to move us forward.”
  • Razer is the sponsor of the Missouri Non-Discrimination Act (MONA), which would add sexual orientation and gender identity to the state’s anti-discrimination statutes. Lawmakers from both parties have been pushing for that measure for 20 years.
  • Razer, one of two openly gay Missouri lawmakers, said MONA is getting more support from Republican legislators. “As I would talk to them privately, not all, but some of them would say ‘my son came out. My daughter came out. My granddaughter came out. The young man who sits behind me in church came out,’” he said. “So I think the process of coming out within the LGBT community has really changed, and I hate to use this phrase, hearts and minds.”
  • Razer said he’s heartened by Rep.-elect Mike Revis’ win in a northern Jefferson County House district last week. He said he’s hoping to see his party succeed in November. “And if we’re ever going to get to a point where we can have good, reasonable conversations in Jefferson City and find good public policy, we have to bring some balance back to Jefferson City,” he said.

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter: @jrosenbaum

Follow Jo Mannies on Twitter: @jmannies

Follow Greg Razer on Twitter: @gregrazer

Music: “Possum Kingdom” by Toadies & “To A Friend” by Alexisonfire