Politics & Issues

Missouri Inauguration Day
1:00 am
Mon January 14, 2013

Missouri's Inauguration Day Arrives For Gov. Nixon And Other Statewide Office Holders

Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri’s inauguration day has arrived, as Governor Jay Nixon (D) and several other state office holders prepare to be sworn in.


It’ll be the second term for most of those taking the oath of office, including Democrats Nixon, Attorney General Chris Koster, and State Treasurer Clint Zweifel.  Fellow Democrat Jason Kander, the incoming Secretary of State, will be the only statewide office newcomer.  Republican Lt. Governor Peter Kinder will be taking the oath of office for the third time, and his third term may prove to be very short if his bid to replace southeast Missouri Congresswoman Jo Ann Emerson (R) succeeds.

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Missouri's Second Injury Fund
5:09 pm
Fri January 11, 2013

Confirmed: Missouri Fund For Disabled Workers Can't Pay The Bills

(via Flickr/LarimdaME)

A report released Friday morning confirmed what many have already known: that Missouri's fund for disabled workers is broke.

Republican Auditor Tom Schweich found that Missouri's Second Injury Fund has $28 million in unpaid obligations, but only had $3 million at the end of 2012.

The fund covers workers' compensation claims for employees who have previous injuries or disabilities and then suffer a new job-related injury.

Schweich says the state is facing several lawsuits demanding immediate payment on claims that have been delayed.

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Politics
4:23 pm
Fri January 11, 2013

Blunt Has 'Concerns' About Hagel's Defense Nomination

Chris McDaniel, St. Louis Public Radio

As a new appointee on the Senate Armed Services Committee, Republican Roy Blunt of Missouri will have a say in the nomination of former Senator Chuck Hagel to Secretary of Defense.

Blunt will join Democrat Claire McCaskill on the committee that will oversee Hagel's hearing.

Hagel has solicited the ire of many conservatives for his prior statements on Israel. While he served in Congress, Hagel stated that he was a United States Senator, not “an Israeli Senator.”

Blunt and his fellow Republicans are concerned he won't be a close enough ally to Israel.

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Politics
5:36 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

What 'Lincoln' Says About Today's Congress

Daniel Day-Lewis takes on one of America's most famous presidents in Lincoln.
David James DreamWorks

Originally published on Thu January 10, 2013 12:28 pm

Lincoln may not be a political film for the ages, but it's certainly a movie that speaks to our own time.

Although the movie centers on the abolition of slavery, Lincoln taps into one of the deepest desires of our historical moment — the desire for politicians in Washington to get their acts together and compromise to succeed in passing major legislation.

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smoking
5:21 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

Mo. House Democrats Ban Smoking In Members' Capitol Offices

Flickr Creative Commons user SuperFantastic

Missouri House Democrats can no longer smoke in their own offices at the Capitol.


The decision was not made by the entire caucus, but by the seven Democrats who make up the caucus’ leadership, including Minority Floor Leader Jake Hummel (D, St. Louis).

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Lt. Gov. succession
3:54 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

Nixon Says He Has Authority To Appoint Mo. Lt. Governor If Office Becomes Vacant

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon.
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Aside from Medicaid expansion, the most talked-about issue so far during the just-begun Missouri legislative session is whether Governor Jay Nixon (D) has the authority to appoint a new Lt. Governor if Peter Kinder succeeds fellow Republican Jo Ann Emerson in Congress.

Following his annual Prayer Breakfast earlier today, Governor Nixon told reporters he believes he has the authority to appoint a new Lt. Governor if the office suddenly becomes vacant.

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Politically Speaking
1:55 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

This Week's Politically Speaking Podcast

Alex Heuer

St. Louis Public Radio’s Chris McDaniel joins the St. Louis Beacon’s Jo Mannies and Jason Rosenbaum to talk about the week’s politics.

On today's episode: Ed Martin becomes the Missouri GOP's new chairman. How did it happen? Also, an update on the jockeying for Missouri's 8th Congressional seat. And then we close it out with a look toward the Missouri legislature.

Follow Chris McDaniel on Twitter@csmcdaniel

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National Politics
12:44 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

President Obama Nominates Lew For Treasury Secretary

President Barack Obama.
(via White House photographer Pete Souza)

President Obama announced his nomination of Jacob "Jack" Lew for the position of Secretary of the Treasury today.

Among other things, Lew's distinctive "loopy" signature has been a topic of discussion over the past few days. Why? The signature of the Secretary of Treasury appears on US currency.

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MO Statehouse
4:03 pm
Wed January 9, 2013

Mo. Lawmakers State Priorities As Fresh Regular Session Begins

The Missouri House chamber at the Missouri Capitol, minutes before the 97th General Assembly convened for the first time on Jan. 9, 2013.
Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Lawmakers have returned to Jefferson City and begun the new year’s regular Missouri legislative session. 

So, what do they want to get done?

Senate Republicans are focused on:

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Illinois General Assembly
8:58 am
Wed January 9, 2013

New Session Of Ill. General Assembly Begins

Credit Flickr/Jason Dunnivant

Reporting from Amanda Vinicky from Illinois Public Radio.

A new session of the Illinois General Assembly begins today, when candidates who won in November's elections take the oath of office.  The outgoing class of legislators left the incoming one with quite a burden.  

Tuesday night, the previous General Assembly adjourned without doing anything to reduce Illinois' $97 billion pension debt, though there were a few last minute tries.

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