This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Oct. 27, 2011 - The official news Wednesday for retired Sen. (and former Gov.) Christopher "Kit" Bond, R-Mo., is his new role as part of a four-person leadership team in Washington, D.C. to head "a bipartisan Housing Commission that will address the long-term challenges facing a struggling housing sector."
But this morning, the Washington Post offers up more intriguing news for St. Louisans in a Style section article over the senator's newly revamped home in the Washington suburb of Chevy Chase, Md.
Linda Bond, the retired senator's wife (and a lover of Swedish antiques), discloses that the couple "will also be placing more permanent roots in St. Louis, giving her an opportunity to find another home to redecorate."
UPDATE: A Bond spokeswoman confirmed this afternoon that the couple has purchased a home in Ladue. The couple will wait until January to move in, the spokeswoman said.
Bond's Missouri base long has been his family's generations-old estate in Mexico, Mo.
But since his retirement in January from the U.S. Senate, the retired senator/governor/state auditor/lawyer has joined the St. Louis law firm of Thompson Coburn. A St. Louis residence might be more convenient -- and also might put Bond in the position of being more active in the area's civic or political affairs.
On the national housing commission front, the former senator is to join a bipartisan team with former U.S. Secretaries of Housing and Urban Development Henry Cisneros (a Democrat) and Mel Martinez (a Republican), and former U.S. Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell (a Democrat).
The panel was set up by the Bipartisan Policy Center, of which Mitchell is a cofounder. The group plans to focus on ways to strengthen the nation's struggling housing industry, a key reason the nation's economy continues to languish.
Bond says in the announcement: "The American Dream of homeownership recently turned into a nightmare for many families and, in turn, our neighborhoods, communities, and entire economy suffered. Solving these issues and addressing long-term questions on the role of government in housing will be no small stump to jump, but we cannot afford to fail."