Bob Dixon

Missouri Sen. Bob Dixon, R-Springfield
Official photo

Missouri’s crowded GOP contest for governor has lost a participant, as state Sen. Bob Dixon is dropping out.

The departure of Dixon, R-Springfield, isn’t entirely unexpected. He was at the bottom of the pack when it came to fundraising. His last campaign finance report showed him with less than $83,000 in the bank.

The five GOP contenders for governor: Peter Kinder, Eric Greitens, Catherine Hanaway, Bob Dixon and John Brunner
St. Louis Public Radio file photos

It’s fair to say that Missouri state Sen. Rob Schaaf has been a thorn in Gov. Jay Nixon’s side over the proposed riverfront stadium in St. Louis.

The St. Joseph Republican was one of the first members of the legislature to raise serious alarm about Nixon issuing state bonds for the $1 billion project without a legislative or statewide vote. More than 20 senators and some key House leaders have threatened to kill any state appropriation to pay off the stadium bonds if Nixon follows through.

Republican GOP - RIGHT WIDTH - also avail. gopelephantleft

(Updated 2 p.m. Mon., July 27)

Missouri’s Republican contest for governor has gotten less crowded — at least for now — as state Sen. Mike Parson has decided to run for the state’s No. 2 post instead. And on Monday, he released a list of supporters, including the state Senate's leadership.

Meanwhile, the GOP’s newest gubernatorial candidate — state Sen. Bob Dixon of Springfield — offered some details about his previously acknowledged past in the 1980s when he lived several years as a young gay man.

In an emailed statement to St. Louis Public Radio, Dixon blamed child abuse for what he called “teenage confusion.” He now is married, has three children and is a staunch social conservative who believes in traditional marriage.

Missouri state Sen. Bob Dixon, R-Springfield, during the most recent legislative session
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

Another Republican is jumping into next year’s race for Missouri governor.

Bob Dixon currently represents Springfield and parts of Green County in the Missouri Senate, having first been elected to the 30th District seat in 2010 and re-elected last year. Before that he served four terms in the Missouri House.

House Speaker John Diehl presides over the Missouri House last week. Diehl, R-Town and Country, has rejected the idea of pursuing a "Ferguson agenda," but adds the House will take up bills changing municipal courts.
Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

At first glance, state Sen. Bob Dixon wouldn’t be an obvious choice to spearhead legislation responding to the unrest in and around Ferguson.

It make take longer than expected to fill Ryan McKenna's void in the Missouri Senate.

When the Jefferson County Democrat resigned in December to become director of the state labor department, he left open the possibility that his Senate seat may remain vacant throughout 2014. If that occurs, the Missouri Senate would not be at full membership for an entire calendar year.

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Nearly a full month of hearings wrapped up Monday into a Missouri Senate bill that would revise the state’s criminal code, but it may already be too late to get the bill to the Governor’s desk this year.

Tim Lloyd, St. Louis Public Radio

Two tax credit bills passed by Missouri lawmakers have become the first ones signed into law this year by Governor Jay Nixon (D). 

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

It appears so far that the Missouri Senate may no longer be the place where tax credits go to die.

In years past, proposed incentives for such things as historic preservation or amateur sporting events would have faced a filibuster threat from a group of fiscally conservative Republicans in the Senate.  But the leaders of that group are gone due to term limits, and perhaps that’s why this year’s amateur sports incentives bill was allowed to receive a Senate floor vote.  State Senator Will Kraus (R, Lee’s Summit) says the atmosphere has changed.