Campaign Finance: Eh, what’s up doc?

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Yesterday at the Missouri Ethics Commission, a dormant republican PAC awakes:

C051039 07/19/2017 RSLC-MISSOURI PAC Republican State Leadership Committee PAC & Individual Account 1201 F Street, NW Suite 675 Washington DC 20004 7/18/2017 $10,000.00

[emphasis added]

They filed limited activity reports in April and July. In January:

C051039: Rslc-Missouri Pac
Committee Type: Political Action
1201 F Street Nw Ste 675
Washington Dc 20004
Established Date: 02/10/2005
[….]
Information Reported On: 2017 – January Quarterly Report
Beginning Money on Hand $554.75
Monetary Receipts + $0.00
Monetary Expenditures – $14.00
Contributions Made – $0.00
Other Disbursements – $0.00
Subtotal ($14.00)
Ending Money On Hand $540.75

[emphasis added]

Okay. Now they have $10,000.00 to play with.

Special elections in the 50th Legislative District and 28th Senate District anyone? Just asking.

Previously:

Tinker to Evers to Chance, from PAC to PAC, from billionaire to PAC… (December 4, 2014)

Campaign Finance: just passing through (November 3, 2016)

Attorney General Josh Hawley (r) – July 2017 Quarterly Campaign Finance Report

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Josh Hawley (r) [2016 file photo].

The quarterly campaign finance reports are due in at the Missouri Ethics Commission. It’s been a very quiet fundraising period for Attorney General Josh Hawley (r).

C151132: Hawley For Missouri
Committee Type: Candidate
Party Affiliation: Republican
Po Box 1073
Columbia Mo 65205
Established Date: 07/23/2015
[….]
Information Reported On: 2017 – July Quarterly Report
Beginning Money on Hand $1,068,053.22
Monetary Receipts + $14,330.00
Monetary Expenditures – $85,992.23
Contributions Made – $0.00
Other Disbursements – $0.00
Subtotal ($71,662.23)
Ending Money On Hand $996,390.99

[emphasis added]

Not much coming in:

MISSOURI ETHICS COMMISSION
CONTRIBUTIONS AND LOANS RECEIVED
Hawley For Missouri [pdf] 7/17/2017
[….]
13. TOTAL MONETARY CONTRIBUTIONS RECEIVED FROM PERSONS GIVING $100 OR LESS $430.00
[….]

[emphasis added]

And this:

MISSOURI ETHICS COMMISSION
CONTRIBUTIONS RECEIVED – SUPPLEMENTAL
Hawley For Missouri 7/17/2017

William Darr PO Box 4087 Springfield MO 65808 American Dehydrated Foods — Chairperson 4/12/2017 $200.00
Douglas Albrecht 16 Upper Ladue Rd St. Louis MO 63124 Bodley Group — Executive 4/21/2017 $2,500.00
Anne Albrecht 16 Upper Ladue Rd Saint Louis MO 63124 Homemaker — Homemaker 4/21/2017 $2,500.00
Mark Gardner 4805 S National Ave Ste 300 Springfield MO 65810 Gardner Capital — Principal 5/19/2017 $2,600.00
Sharon Hayes PO Box 557 Saint Albans MO 63073 Retired — Retired 5/29/2017 $100.00
William Darr PO Box 4087 Springfield MO 65808 American Dehydrated Foods — Chairperson 6/12/2017 $100.00
Charles Shields 47 SE Erin Ct St Josephy MO 64507 Truman Medical Center — CEO 6/12/2017 $200.00
Philip Melugin 3033 S Kansas Express Way Springfield MO 65807 Phoenix Home Care — Healthcare 6/27/2017 $2,600.00
Kimberly Melugin 5853 S Northern Ridge Rd Springfield MO 65810 Phoenix Home Care — Bookkeeper 6/27/2017 $2,600.00
William Kilroy 817 West 61st Terrace Kansas City MO 64113 Polsinelli PC — Attorney 6/30/2017 $500.00

That’s it. You think everyone else is saving it up for a U.S. Senate race? Just asking.

Some of the expenditures:

MISSOURI ETHICS COMMISSION
ITEMIZED EXPENDITURES OVER $100 SUPPLEMENTAL FORM
Hawley For Missouri 7/17/2017

Mine Creek Strategies 7909 Falmouth St Prairie Village KS 66208 4/6/2017 Communications Retainer $3,000.00
On Message Inc. 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 4/6/2017 Media Production Fees $2,898.00
First Tuesday 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 4/10/2017 Media Consulting $5,000.00
Spark Promotions 3633 Prescoott Dr Columbia MO 65201 4/10/2017 Advertising $1,982.50

First Tuesday 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 5/1/2017 Media Consulting & Reim. Exp – See Form CD-8 $6,732.09
Mine Creek Strategies 7909 Falmouth St Prairie Village KS 66208 5/4/2017 Communications Retainer $3,000.00
On Message Inc. 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 5/4/2017 Reimbursed Expenses – See Form CD-8 $1,506.57
On Message Inc. 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 5/17/2017 Media Production Fees $5,216.97

First Tuesday 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 6/2/2017 Media Consulting $5,000.00
Mine Creek Strategies 7909 Falmouth St Prairie Village KS 66208 6/2/2017 Communications Retainer $3,000.00

On Message Inc. 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 6/2/2017 Reimbursed Expenses – See Form CD-8 $1,118.20
On Message Inc. 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 6/15/2017 Media Production Fees $15,000.00

On Message Inc. 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 6/27/2017 Media Buys $4,850.00
Spark Promotions 3633 Prescoott Dr Columbia MO 65201 6/27/2017 Advertising $906.49

First Tuesday 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 6/30/2017 Media Consulting $5,000.00
On Message Inc. 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 6/30/2017 Reimbursed Expenses – See Form CD-8 $1,307.59
First Tuesday 705 Melvin Ave #105 Annapolis MD 21401 6/30/2017 Reimbursed Expenses – See Form CD-8 $691.10

That’s a lot of media. Running for something? Just curious.

Previously:

Attorney General Josh Hawley (r) – April 2017 Quarterly Campaign Finance Report (April 20, 2017)

Josh Hawley (r): well, maybe (July 11, 2017)

Gov. Eric Greitens (r) – July 2017 Quarterly Campaign Finance Report

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Eric Greitens (r) [2016 file photo].

The quarterly campaign finance reports are due in at the Missouri Ethics Commission. It’s been a relatively quiet fundraising period for Governor Eric Greitens (r). All that Washington, D.C. travel can have an impact.

C151053: Greitens For Missouri
Committee Type: Candidate
Party Affiliation: Republican
Po Box 144
Jefferson City Mo 65102
Established Date: 02/24/2015
[….]
Information Reported On: 2017 – July Quarterly Report
Beginning Money on Hand $2,419,939.44
Monetary Receipts + $101,533.25
Monetary Expenditures – $127,360.60
Contributions Made – $0.00
Other Disbursements – $11,773.29
Subtotal ($37,600.64)
Ending Money On Hand $2,382,338.80

[emphasis added]

Some of the contributions:

MISSOURI ETHICS COMMISSION
CONTRIBUTIONS AND LOANS RECEIVED
Greitens For Missouri [pdf] 7/17/2017
[….]
13. TOTAL MONETARY CONTRIBUTIONS RECEIVED FROM PERSONS GIVING $100 OR LESS $8,175.29
[….]

[emphasis added]

And some others:

MISSOURI ETHICS COMMISSION
CONTRIBUTIONS RECEIVED – SUPPLEMENTAL
Greitens For Missouri 7/17/2017

Dwayne Holden 3903 E Eaglescliffe Dr Springfield MO 65809 Custom Metalcraft — CEO 4/3/2017 $2,600.00
Sara Hargis 1470 E Meadowmere St Springfield MO 65804 4 Ozarks Coca-Cola/Dr Pepper — Business Owner 4/5/2017 $2,600.00
Dolph Woodman 218 E Harrison Street Republic MO 65378 Requested — Requested 4/5/2017 $2,600.00
Dan Cobb 1165 S Post Oak Ct Springfield MO 65809 Retired — Retired 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Coby Cullins 2732 S Farm Rd 241 Rogersville MO 65742 National Safety Compliance — President 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
James Ferguson 911 Saint Andrews Cir Springfield MO 65809 Heart of America Bev Co — Wholesaler 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Craig Frazier 2465 S Forrest Heights Ave Springfield MO 65809 Retired — Retired 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Larry Frazier 567 Dale Ave Hollister MO 65672 Retired — Retired 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
John Johnson 5670 S Glenstone Abbey Ct Springfield MO 65809 Self-Employed — Business Owner 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
William Killian 318 S Farm Road 193 Springfield MO 65809 Killian Construction — CEO 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Gary Leondard 5101 Shady Oak Place Springfield MO 65804 Steak N Shake — Restauranteur 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Bryan Magers 840 S Roanoke Ave Springfield MO 65806 Self-employed — Property Development 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Randy Magers 2776 S Campbell Springfield MO 65807 Magers Management — Commercial RE Developer 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Gary Metzger 3927 E Knollwood Ozark MO 65721 Simmons Bank — Banker 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Nick Myers 5873 Riverside Dr Joplin MO 64804 Nick Myers CPA PC — CPA 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Larry Sexton 10785 Greenlefe Dr Rolla MO 65402 Sellers-Sexton — Owner 4/12/2017 $2,600.00
Steven Warlick 1124 E Portland Ave Springfield MO 65807 Bates — President/CEO 4/12/2017 $2,600.00

[emphasis added]

You get the picture.

Some of the expenditures:

MISSOURI ETHICS COMMISSION
ITEMIZED EXPENDITURES OVER $100 SUPPLEMENTAL FORM
Greitens For Missouri 7/17/2017

St Louis Cardinals 700 Clark St St. Louis MO 63102 4/5/2017 Event Expense $640.00
St Louis Cardinals 700 Clark St St. Louis MO 63102 4/6/2017 Event Expense $690.00
Kansas City Royals 1 Royal Way Kansas City MO 64129 4/12/2017 Event Expense $1,803.00

Austin Chambers 15 Cricklewood Place Frontenac MO 63131 5/1/2017 Campaign Worker Compensation $1,664.85

Campaign Solutions 117 N Saint Asaph St Alexandria VA 22314 5/2/2017 Merchant Service Fees $334.40
Campaign Solutions 117 N Saint Asaph St Alexandria VA 22314 5/2/2017 Merchant service fees $3,571.33

Missouri Ethics Commission PO Box 1370 Jefferson City MO 65102 5/2/2017 Penalty $100.00

Campaign Solutions 117 N Saint Asaph St Alexandria VA 22314 5/3/2017 Merchant service fees $495.17
Teralogix 1141 S 7th St St Louis MO 63104 5/4/2017 Advertising $1,792.00

Chalmers Pak Burch & Adams LLC 5805 State Bridge Road #G77 Johns Creek GA 30097 5/12/2017 Legal fees $17,350.78

Marriott 1331 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington DC 20004 5/17/2017 Travel $192.26

Campaign Solutions 117 N Saint Asaph St Alexandria VA 22314 5/18/2017 Merchant service fees $1,510.00
MegaPath 6800 Koll Center Parkway Suite 200 Pleasanton CA 94566
5/23/2017

Williams Keepers LLC 3220 W Edgewood Dr # E Jefferson City MO 65109 5/30/2017 Accounting fees $5,045.75

Austin Chambers 15 Cricklewood Place Frontenac MO 63131 5/31/2017 Campaign Worker Compensation $1,664.85

Something Else Strategies 212 Golden Willow Court Easley SC 29642 5/31/2017 Media production $8,000.00

[emphasis added]

Apparently the campaign still has sufficient minigun ammunition left over for future commercials.

Previously:

Gov. Eric Greitens (r) – April 2017 Quarterly Campaign Finance Report (April 18, 2017)

They ain’t exactly pushin’ to the front of the line

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Another republican member of the U.S. House from Missouri has decided to not run for the U.S. Senate in 2018.

Representative Vicky Hartzler (r) [2016 file photo].

An announcement yesterday from Representative Vicky Hartzler (r)

[….]
After much prayer and discussion with my family I have decided to seek re-election to the United States House of Representatives. I love the great people of the 4th Congressional District
and feel honored to be their voice in Washington. I believe the best way to continue to serve them is by taking their common-sense ideas and Heartland values to Washington.

I appreciate all of the kind words of encouragement over the last few weeks from people all over our state. I did what you asked. I and my family took a hard look and prayed faithfully about running for the United States Senate. While I am honored by the support I’ve received, it is my belief this race is for another solid conservative to pursue and win in 2018.
[….]

Was it all those town halls? Just asking.

Previously:

Rep. Vicky Hartzler (r): open public town halls are just not gonna happen (June 13, 2017)

Why is Ann Wagner bowing out of the Senate race? (July 3, 2017)

Ann Wagner – voice of the vulnerable?

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Got the latest email newsletter from my congressional representative, Rep. Ann Wagner (R-2). And just about fell out of my chair laughing. First sentence: “Since I first came to Congress, I have dedicated myself to being a voice for the most vulnerable in our society.”

This, coming from the woman who giddily warbled “freedom” after she helped pass an Obamacare replacement that would throw over 20 million people off their health insurance, is too rich for words.

Coming from the woman whose main raison d’etre as a legislator has been to deprive elderly retirees of financial safeguards that would prevent unethical investment counselors from taking dishonest advantage, it’s nothing less than shameful. (Of course, she’s now got a $3 million campaign pot in large part thanks to grateful bankers, financiers and investment professionals so I guess duplicity is its own reward.)

What Wagner’s on about is her work to put a halt to advertising Website Backpage.com’s illegal sex ads and against its role in human trafficking – a worthwhile target for legislators. Wagner, along with the many Democratic and Republican lawmakers, notably Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill, who have worked on this issue, deserve credit for their efforts. Most recently, Wagner has written to the Justice Department to try and get them investigate potential criminal activity on the part of the Website. So has Claire McCaskill.

Of course, if you only read Wagner’s newsletters, you’d think she invented the struggle against sex trafficking. Is the only time GOPers use the word “bipartisan” when they want to attack Democrats for not being bipartisan enough? I can only attribute the self-applause to the fact that maybe Wagner thinks that if she doesn’t grandstand, her rare effort on behalf of the vulnerable might be overwhelmed by her more typical advocacy for the comfortable.

 

Campaign Finance: freedom to get paid less

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Today at the Missouri Ethics Commission for an entity opposed to organized labor:

C161416 07/17/2017 MISSOURIANS FOR WORKER FREEDOM A New Missouri 6614 Clayton Road #181 Richmond Heights MO 63117 7/17/2017 $250,000.00

[emphasis added]

A New Missouri?

Oh, look:

C161416: Missourians For Worker Freedom
Committee Type: Campaign
7509 Nw Tiffany Springs Parkway Suite 300
Kansas City Mo 64153
Established Date: 12/23/2016
[….]
Information Reported On: 2017 – July Quarterly Report
Beginning Money on Hand $0.00
Monetary Receipts + $0.00
Monetary Expenditures – $0.00
Contributions Made – $0.00
Other Disbursements – $0.00
Subtotal $0.00
Ending Money On Hand $0.00

Now they’re flush with cash.

What are they up to?:

Ballot Measure History
Ballot Measures Election Date Subject Support/Oppose
Right To Work 11/06/2018 Initiative Petition 2018-092 Oppose
Right To Work 11/06/2018 Initiative Petition 2018-102 Oppose
Right To Work 11/06/2018 Initiative Petition Banning Right To Work And/Or Government Union Reform Oppose

And who gave them all that money? From March, in the Kansas City Star:

Nonprofit linked to Missouri governor raises new questions about ‘dark money,’ ethics
By Jason Hancock

JEFFERSON CITY
In the shadow of the Missouri Capitol, just a block from the governor’s mansion, sits the headquarters of a just-started nonprofit called A New Missouri Inc.

Founded by Gov. Eric Greitens’ campaign treasurer and housed in a building linked to one of Missouri’s most prolific political donors, the group’s stated purpose is to “promote ideas, policies and/or legislation to create more jobs, higher pay, safer streets, better schools, and more, for all Missourians.”

But its focus will be advocating for the governor and his agenda, a Greitens adviser said this week. And because it’s a nonprofit, A New Missouri can accept unlimited contributions and won’t be required to disclose who is giving it money….

Well.

From $0.00 to $250,000.00 with one contribution – with no way of knowing who actually anted up. “Missourians for worker freedom”? That’s serious fake grassroots.

Previously:

Gov. Eric Greitens (r) thinks you’re a moron (May 23, 2017)

Mix Eric Greitens, ambition, dark money, free speech, strongman rallies and get a toxic mess (June 10, 2017)

Campaign Finance: business as usual

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Yesterday at the Missouri Ethics Commission for the House Republican Campaign Committee:

C091068 07/16/2017 HOUSE REPUBLICAN CAMPAIGN COMMITTEE, INC Friends Of Robert Cornejo PO Box 346 St Peters MO 63376 7/15/2017 $5,001.00

[emphasis added]

The HRCC will find something to spend it on. Maybe before August 8th.

You think robocalls will ever go out of fashion? Just asking.

What a friend we have in Putin

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In the United State Constitution:

Article VI
….no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.

There’s a special election coming up in the 50th Legislative District. This afternoon, from the Executive Director of the Missouri republican Party, attacking the Democratic Party candidate:

Austin Stukins‏ @austinstukins
.@SkeltonFor50 caught spewing communist manifesto. Tried to defend it using the Bible… funny thing is, she’s an agnostic. #blasphemy
4:05 PM – 15 Jul 2017

“Caught”? We never get out of junior high school.

Attacking your political opposition for “spewing” the communist manifesto? Didn’t that kind of language go out with high button shoes? Just asking.

They’re irony challenged, aren’t they?

#blasphemy? Really? Since when did we become a country where it’s accepted practice to question the religious orthodoxy or the religious beliefs of our political opponents?

Roy Blunt thinks the BCRA is just fine, thank you

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I know, I know – it seems like it’s the summer of piling on GOP Senator Roy Blunt. But what can you do with a politician who tries to pretend that policies are nothing more than procedural exercises that parties win or loose, the welfare of everyday citizens, people who depend on him, be damned?

The latest example of Blunt’s approach to legislating is the Senate’s newly reworked version of Trumpcare, the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA). Our Roy thinks that “it’s in the best shape it’s been in so far […] Now that members actually have paper in their hand they can look at what is likely to be very close to the final bill we’ll be voting on and move forward.”

In the best shape it’s been so far. Indeed. And what does “best shape” mean in this context”? Is Blunt really saying that he thinks it’s actually better as a healthcare bill than it was before? Or is he just optimistic about the fact that it’s been taken into back rooms and worked over as fully as is possible in order to buy the votes of craven GOPers who want to have their cake (win their next election) and eat it too (not get primaried)?

My money’s on the second option. Why? Blunt isn’t dumb enough to believe the first.

Today we learn that even insurers who, as a group, have mostly kept quiet on the topic, are appalled at what the GOP is proposing to foist off on Americans as a substitute for the flawed but functional Obamacare. Specifically, the Cruz Amendment, formally known as the Consumer Freedom Option, has them in a tizzy. The Cruz Amendment would permit insurers that sell Obamacare policies to offer plans that don’t conform to the Obamacare standards mandating minimal levels of coverage, including protections for those with preexisting conditions, as long as they include at least one offering that is conformant.

The CEOs of America’s Health Insurance Plans and the BlueCross BlueShield Association let it all hang out in a letter released today,  the Cruz amendment “is simply unworkable in any form” they write, “and would undermine protections for those with pre-existing medical conditions, increase premiums and lead to widespread terminations of coverage for people currently enrolled in the individual market.”

The insurers are far from placated by the pretense that the bill would create “high risk pools”:

… We also firmly believe that the dedicated funding included in the bill to address the cost of plans that cover people with pre-existing medical conditions is insufficient and additional funding will not make the provision workable for consumers or taxpayers

As healthy people move to the less-regulated plans, those with significant medical needs will have no choice but to stay in the comprehensive plans, and premiums will skyrocket for people with preexisting conditions. This would especially impact middle-income families that that are not eligible for a tax credit. Taxpayers will pay more to finance federal tax credits for the individuals in comprehensive plans and these costs will continue to increase, even with dedicated funding. Risk adjustment is also critical to making the individual market sustainable, but can only work when there are uniform benefit requirements across the market.

Finally, this provision will lead to far fewer, if any, coverage options for consumers who purchase their plan in the individual market. As a result, millions of more individuals will become uninsured.

But, hey, Roy Blunt thinks that giving goodies to a few moderate Republicans so that they can try to save face with the folks they’re planning to shaft, along with the addition of this Cruz amendment, has insured that the bill’s in the “best shape” ever.

Campaign Finance: it’s in their nature

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Yesterday at the Missouri Ethics Commission for two brand new PACs:

C171144 07/14/2017 Grace River PAC Herzog Contracting 600 South Riverside Road St Joseph MO 64507 6/27/2017 $50,000.00

C171141 07/14/2017 Ridgely PAC Herzog Contracting 600 South Riverside Road St Joseph MO 64507 6/27/2017 $100,000.00

[emphasis added]

Not only do they have the same large dollar contributor, they share the same address:

C171144: Grace River Pac
Committee Type: Political Action
1100 Main St Ste 2700
Kansas City Mo 64105
Established Date: 05/17/2017
[….]
Treasurer
Kristen Blanchard Ansley
Po Box 26777
Kansas City Mo 64196

C171141: Ridgely Pac
Committee Type: Political Action
1100 Main St Ste 2700
Kansas City Mo 64105
Established Date: 05/17/2017
[….]
Deputy Treasurer
Kristen Blanchard Ansley
Po Box 26777
Kansas City Mo 64196

Go figure.