Politics & Issues

Politics
12:40 pm
Wed November 28, 2012

Three 'Vital' Bills McCaskill Says Are Being Ignored

Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill.
(via Flickr/Senator McCaskill)

Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill says she's frustrated with the House of Representatives for not taking up three pieces of legislation that she calls "bipartisan" and "vitally important."

The Democratic Senator says she doesn't understand why members of the House won't take up legislation on:

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ethics legislation
5:12 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Mo. House Democrats To Revive Ethics Legislation

House Democratic Floor Leader-Elect Jake Hummel (D, St. Louis) speaks to reporters at the Mo. Capitol today about their proposed ethics bill. In the foreground at left is the proposed bill’s sponsor, State Rep. Kevin McManus (D, Kansas City).
(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

House Democrats say they’ll again try to get campaign contribution limits restored in Missouri when next year’s regular legislative session begins.

The Missouri Supreme Court reinstated caps on campaign contributions in 2007, but a 2008 law removed them again.  Jake Hummel of St. Louis takes over next year as the top Democrat in the Missouri House.  He says they’ll push for an ethics bill similar to one in 2010 that had support in both parties.

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Tom Bauer
1:19 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Former Alderman Bauer Loses Defamation Appeal

(via Flickr/s_falkow)

Nearly seven years later, the battle over the recall of former St. Louis alderman Tom Bauer is a step closer to final.

The Missouri Court of Appeals today threw out a $150,000 defamation verdict for fliers published against Bauer during his recall election in 2005.

Bauer was thrown out of office in September of that year, in part because of his support for a QuikTrip that would have required the use of eminent domain. The 24th Ward is south of Forest Park and includes Dogtown.

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Health Care
11:13 am
Tue November 27, 2012

Report: US Law Could Increase Mo. Medicaid Costs

(via Flickr/Jennifer Boriss)

A new report says Missouri's Medicaid costs could rise by 6.6 percent over 10 years if the state fully implements the federal health care law.

But the report also says almost half of that increase will occur even if Missouri does not expand Medicaid eligibility for adults.

The report by the Kaiser Family Foundation and Urban Institute says Missouri can expect to spend an additional $1.2 billion from 2013 to 2022 as more people join the Medicaid rolls because of the federal health care law.

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Missouri sheriffs
6:23 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Too Easy To Qualify For Sheriff In Missouri, Sheriffs Say

Cape Girardeau Co. Sheriff John Jordan (R) testifies before the Mo. House Interim Committee on Operations of the Office of Sheriff on Nov. 26th, 2012.
Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio

Sheriffs from around Missouri want state lawmakers to tighten the requirements needed to become a county’s sheriff.

Cape Girardeau County Sheriff John Jordan (R) told a State House committee today that the only current requirements for potential candidates are that they are “breathing,” and can pay the $50 filing fee.  He wants lawmakers to craft legislation that would require sheriff’s candidates to have prior law enforcement experience.

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Mayoral Race
5:27 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Ready, Set, Mayor: Reed, Slay File For 2013 St. Louis Primary

Board of Alderman Lewis Reed (at left) and current St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay.
(via City of St. Louis websites)

St. Louis's Democratic battle between incumbent Mayor Francis Slay and Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed is now official -- both candidates filed for the March primary this morning.

Slay has never lost a race, and he's taking this challenge seriously. In fact, Slay says he's had paid employees and volunteers standing in line to hold his spot for filing since Sept. 24.

Slay says he wants another term in order to continue improving education and public safety in the city, and points to the recent passage of local control of the police department.

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Union contract
8:29 pm
Tue November 20, 2012

Quinn Voids Union Contract

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has terminated a contract with 40,000 of the state's employees.
St. Louis Public Radio

Amanda Vinicky contributed reporting from Springfield, Ill.


In what's being called an "unprecedented" step, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has terminated the state's contract with its largest employee union.


The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees helped Quinn win the governor's office in 2010, but the relationship soured almost immediately. The governor, a Democrat, has tried to close state facilities, lay off workers, rescind guaranteed salary hikes and reduce the pensions of state employees, all in an effort to cut costs.

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Politics
6:15 pm
Tue November 20, 2012

Ann Wagner Toes Party Line On Taxes, Despite "Fiscal Cliff"

Republican Ann Wagner speaking to the RCGA
Credit Christine Page / St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Assoc.

Missouri Congresswoman-elect Ann Wagner says she would not support any plan to increase tax rates to avoid the so-called “fiscal cliff.”

Failure to reach a deal before January First would result in immediate tax increases and across the board spending cuts.

Wagner spoke at a luncheon of the St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association on Tuesday.  On the issue of the so-called “fiscal cliff” said she supports a compromise to generate revenue by reforming the nation’s tax code, while also preserving the Bush-era tax cuts on the wealthiest 2-percent of Americans.

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Politically Speaking
5:02 pm
Tue November 20, 2012

This Week's Politically Speaking Podcast

It's the Thanksgiving Politically Speaking podcast, and we're thankful for all of our listeners.

St. Louis Public Radio's Chris McDaniel joins the St. Louis Beacon's Jo Mannies and Jason Rosenbaum to talk about a few political issues.

On the table for this week: GOP dissent on health exchanges, the recent ruling on public employee's right to collective bargain and the new bipartisan debt group in Missouri. And, of course, some talk about Governor Jay Nixon's deer "harvesting" and Gobbles the Turkey.

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St. Louis on the Air
1:59 pm
Tue November 20, 2012

Update On Mo. And Ill. Delegations During Lame-Duck Congress

U.S. Capitol, Capitol Hill, Washington D.C.
Evan C. Parker Via Flickr

The lame duck Congress is now in session and while historically known as a time of inaction, the large task of avoiding the “fiscal cliff” is ever-present.

The fiscal cliff is a combination of tax increases and spending cuts which would take effect on January 1, 2013, primarily due to the expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts.

Host Don Marsh talked with Rob Koenig, the St. Louis Beacon’s Washington D.C. correspondent.

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