Politics & Issues

Missouri House
11:54 am
Mon March 3, 2014

State Rep. Ellinger, One of House's Most Outspoken Progressives, Stepping Down

State Rep. Rory Ellinger, D-University City, has announced he's not seeking re-election.
Credit Sean Sandefur/St. Louis Public Radio.

State Rep. Rory Ellinger, D-University City, announced Monday that he’s withdrawing as a candidate for re-election. Ellinger is in his second term.

Ellinger, 72, cited health reasons. A consultant, Jim Ross, said that Ellinger has been undergoing medical tests for several weeks.

Ellinger has been one of the state Capitol’s most outspoken progressives. He has been at the forefront of several recent legislative battles over Medicaid expansion, tax credits and crime bills.

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On the Trail
8:24 pm
Sun March 2, 2014

As Dooley and Stenger Duke It Out, Zimmerman Seeks Quieter Re-Election Bid

St. Louis County Assessor Jake Zimmerman is running for his first full term as St. Louis County assessor, a bid likely to be overshadowed by a contentious Democratic primary for county executive.
Credit Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

In some strange, alternate universe, St. Louis County Assessor Jake Zimmerman would be running for a third term on the St. Louis County Council. 

Back in the mid-2000s, the Olivette Democrat seemed to be on a collision course with Barbara Fraser, a fellow Democrat, for the 5th District council seat. But the two agreed on a deal: Fraser would run for county council while Zimmerman would run for Fraser's spot in the Missouri House.

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City-County Merger
5:20 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Lugar: Combining Governments Can Bring New Life To Urban Communities

Former Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Indiana, speaks on Friday at St. Louis University Law School. Lugar was the keynote speaker at a conference about merging St. Louis with St. Louis County.
Credit Jason Rosenbaum/St. Louis Public Radio

Updated Monday, March 3, 2014 to include audio from St. Louis on the Air.

Former U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar remembers a time when his home city was described by travel writers as “Indianapolis No Place.” 

When the Indiana Republican became mayor of Indianapolis in the 1960s, the city was mired in a “mediocre, flat situation.” He said it received “very little interest to anybody outside who was not involved parochially.”   

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Primary elections
4:55 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Republicans In Tizzy Over Nieves Possibly Leaving State Senate

State Sen. Brian Nieves has filed for re-election, but some wonder if he is planning on changing his mind.
Tim Bommel, Mo. House of Representatives

Until this week, most of the attention directed at state Sen. Brian Nieves, R-Washington, has focused on his outspoken conservatism and his efforts to block some federal gun laws.

But now the chief question is whether Nieves is preparing to quit the state Capitol.

Nieves said in two text messages this week, the latest on Friday, that he’s not yet ready to discuss the situation -- but many others are.

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Concealed-carry permits
3:59 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Illinois Starts Mailing Approved Concealed-Carry Permits

Illinois started mailing out concealed-carry permits.
(via Flickr/kcdsTM)

Illinois' very first concealed-carry permits -- about 5,000 of them -- were mailed today, according to the Illinois state police, as reported by the Chicago Tribune.

The Tribune also reported that so far the state has received about 50,000 applications for a concealed-carry permit. It added that about 300 requests have been denied and 800 more are under review because of objections by law enforcement.

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Politics & Issues
1:28 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

The Rundown: Appreciating Our Town's Arts And Culture

St. Louis street names recall the city's French heritage.
Joseph Leahy / St. Louis Public Radio

We know that you listen to us on air and check our website for news and information about our region. We hope that you look at our website every day, but we know that's not always possible. So, once a week, on Friday, we will highlight some of the website's top stories of the week.

Our town: History...

As part of St. Louis' 250th birthday, we'll be looking at people, places and things throughout the year that are quintessentially St. Louis, or [sɛ̃ lwi].

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St. Louis on the Air
5:56 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

St. Louis Is A Hot Spot For Sex Trafficking: A Discussion About Efforts To End The Trade

An image from “The Price of Sex,” a feature-length documentary about young Eastern European women who've been drawn into a netherworld of sex trafficking and abuse.
Via Flickr / humanrightsfilmfestival

Sex trafficking is not just an international problem, or even a national one. It is also a problem here in St. Louis. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, St. Louis is a hot spot of sex trafficking activity, one of the top 20 in the country.

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Student Transfer Law
5:42 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

Missouri Senate Passes Student Transfer Bill In Less Than 24 Hours

Bubbles | sxc.hu

(Story updated at 5:42 p.m. to include today's 3rd-read vote by the full Senate that sent SB 493 to the Missouri House.)

After spending two days debating and amending legislation to lessen the effects of Missouri's student transfer law, the state Senate overwhelmingly passed it Thursday.

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Voter Photo ID
4:59 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

Missouri House Passes Photo ID Requirement For Voting

(via Flickr/hlkljgk)

The Missouri House has passed two pieces of legislation that would usher in photo ID requirements for voters.

First, the House passed HJR 47, a proposed constitutional amendment to allow for photo ID requirements at the polls. This proposed amendment would also need voter approval.

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Politics & Issues
4:43 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

Former St. Louis Alderman Triplett Admits Illegally Using Campaign Money For Personal Expenses

Ald. Kacie Starr Triplett (in blue) at an event noting her decision to step down and take a job with Behavioral Health Network in November 2012.
Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio

Former St. Louis Alderman Kacie Starr Triplett is facing a $100,000 fine imposed by the Missouri Ethics Commission after she admitted that she illegally spent thousands of campaign dollars on personal expenses – including clothes, a wig,  a college loan and her mortgage.

She also admits to filing erroneous campaign reports that failed to list thousands of dollars in donations, and some improper spending, in a possible attempt to cover up her illegal activity. The reports in question span from 2010-2012. 

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