Northwest Missouri will have a new state senator next year, as Brad Lager prepares to leave office.
The Republican from Savannah can't run again because of term limits, but he says he's ready for the next chapter in his life -- which for now does not include politics.
Lager sat down recently with St. Louis Public Radio's Marshall Griffin to talk about his time in office and about what he considers to be roadblocks toward making Missouri better. The interview has been edited for length and clarity.
The Missouri Senate had seven new members after the smoke cleared from the 2006 election cycle. Only two served for the maximum time allowed under term limits – Senate Minority Leader Jolie Justus, D-Kansas City, and state Sen. Brad Lager, R-Savannah.
The two lawmakers are at the opposite ends of the political spectrum. Justus entered the General Assembly as a combative fighter who fought tooth-and-nail against the Republican majority. Lager, who was arguably more conservative than his Republican counterparts, seemed on a course for higher office.
Missouri senators have given up their attempt to pass an overhaul of some of the state's tax credit programs for businesses and developers.
Supporters of the bill set it aside Friday after Republican Sen. Brad Lager, of Savannah, spoke against it for an hour in a filibuster that could have otherwise continued until the session's mandatory end at 6 p.m.
The legislation would have created tax incentives for international air cargo exports, computer data centers and investors in startup technology companies.
Among the races for Missouri’s statewide offices, the one with the most mudslinging so far is the Republican primary for Lt. Governor. Peter Kinder is seeking re-election, but he’s facing a major challenge from State Senator Brad Lager. Both are touting conservative ideals while attacking each other’s records in office.
St. Louis Public Radio’s Marshall Griffin takes a closer look at next week’s GOP Lt. Governor’s contest.
Senate Democrats spent five hours Wednesday blocking the bill before sitting down. Today, there was no debate, only a 23 to 8 straight party-line vote. Brad Lager (R, Savannah) handled the bill in the Senate. He says he fully expects the governor, a Democrat, to veto the bill.
The vote was a mere formality following last week’s battle to kill the measure. Maria Chappelle-Nadal of University City and several other Senate Democrats had conducted a filibuster, but gave in after language guaranteeing jury trials in discrimination lawsuits was added to the bill. But she still spoke out against it, in particular, the Missouri Chamber’s claim that the bill would help curb frivolous lawsuits.
The Missouri Senate has given first-round approval to legislation that would redefine workplace discrimination, after an agreement was reached between the bill’s sponsor and a group of Democrats that had been blocking it.
The agreement took the form of an amendment to the bill, which would guarantee the right to a jury trial in any workplace discrimination case. State Senator Brad Lager (R, Savannah), the bill’s sponsor, agreed to support the amendment.