On the latest edition of the Politically Speaking podcast, St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum welcomes state Rep. Dean Plocher to the program for the first time.
The Des Peres Republican was elected in late 2015 to fill former House Speaker John Diehl’s unexpired term. The 89th House District includes parts of Town & Country, Huntleigh, Des Peres and Country Life Acres.
Plocher, who operates his own law firm in Clayton, had planned to run for the seat after Diehl was forced to leave office due to term limits. But Diehl resigned earlier than expected in 2015 amid a scandal involving a 19-year-old intern.
Ultimately, Plocher beat out two other candidates to secure the Republican nomination in the special election. He defeated Democratic Al Gerber by 20 percentage points, and was re-elected last year by a wide margin.
Plocher serves as the vice chairman of the House Utilities Committee, and is on the the House Economic Development Committee and the Special Committee on Urban Issues.
- He is sponsoring a constitutional amendment to impose term limits on the lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general and auditor. It’s an idea that has Republican Gov. Eric Greitens’ support. “I don’t like carveouts,” he said. “I think what’s good for the goose is good for the gander.”
- He is also looking into changing how term limits work in the legislature. He’s proposed allowing someone to serve for 12 years in the House or Senate and an additional four years in the other chamber. Currently, lawmakers can only serve a maximum of eight years in the House and eight years in the Senate.
- Plocher said he supports the idea of requiring politically active nonprofit groups to reveal their contributors. Several of Greitens’ campaign staffers started A New Missouri, a 501(c)(4) that’s attacked GOP Sen. Rob Schaaf. “I think my constituents probably do want to know who’s donating money to me and who’s getting large checks from corporations,” he said.
- During the last two weeks of session, Plocher is hoping for finality on a bill establishing a prescription drug monitoring program. He also expects intense debate over a Senate bill that would make it harder for employees to prove discrimination when fired from a job.
Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter: @jrosenbaum
Follow Dean Plocher on Twitter: @deanplocher
Music: “Danger! High Voltage” by Electric Six