Campaign Finance: very different priorities

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

C091068 11/16/2017 HOUSE REPUBLICAN CAMPAIGN COMMITTEE, INC Leggett and Platt Incorporated PO Box 757 Carthage MO 64836 11/14/2017 $10,000.00

[emphasis added]

We could guess.

Today at the same place – working people trying to do something about campaign finance and ethics in Missouri:

C161298 11/17/2017 CLEAN Missouri CHIPP Political Account 1401 Hampton Ave 3rd Floor St Louis MO 63139 11/16/2017 $50,000.00

[emphasis added]

There is a difference, eh?

We were told.

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We knew.

August 6, 2017 – Keystone Pipeline Protest and March – Lincoln, Nebraska – photo by Michael Bersin

Today:

Keystone pipeline spills 210,000 gallons of oil on eve of permitting decision for TransCanada

The Keystone pipeline running from Canada across the Great Plains leaked Thursday morning, spilling about 5,000 barrels of oil — or 210,000 gallons — southeast of the small town of Amherst in northeast South Dakota….

Any more questions?

Sen. Claire McCaskill (D): “…What’s the damn rush?”

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Senator Claire McCaskill (D) [2017 file photo].

Senator Claire McCaskill (D) this morning via Twitter – on the republican tax scam:

Claire McCaskill‏ @clairecmc
We got this at 10:18 pm last night. Expected to work on it at 10:00 am today. This is nuts. What’s the damn rush? Why can’t we have a reasonable time to read and study?

GOP Senate Finance‏ @GOPSenFinance
Here’s the chairman’s modified mark and score for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act: [….]  #taxreform

7:17 AM – 15 Nov 2017

Uh, because they need to present a legislative “victory” to the moron at the head of their party? Just a guess.

From Masha Gessen on November 11, 2016:

Autocracy: Rules for Survival
[….]
Rule #5: Don’t make compromises. Like Ted Cruz, who made the journey from calling Trump “utterly amoral” and a “pathological liar” to endorsing him in late September to praising his win as an “amazing victory for the American worker,” Republican politicians have fallen into line. Conservative pundits who broke ranks during the campaign will return to the fold. Democrats in Congress will begin to make the case for cooperation, for the sake of getting anything done—or at least, they will say, minimizing the damage. Nongovernmental organizations, many of which are reeling at the moment, faced with a transition period in which there is no opening for their input, will grasp at chances to work with the new administration. This will be fruitless—damage cannot be minimized, much less reversed, when mobilization is the goal—but worse, it will be soul-destroying. In an autocracy, politics as the art of the possible is in fact utterly amoral. Those who argue for cooperation will make the case, much as President Obama did in his speech, that cooperation is essential for the future. They will be willfully ignoring the corrupting touch of autocracy, from which the future must be protected.
[….]

“…In an autocracy, politics as the art of the possible is in fact utterly amoral…”

Let’s remember that.

Campaign Finance: very interested

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Today at the Missouri Ethics Commission for the republican state senate campaign committee:

C071094 11/14/2017 MISSOURI SENATE CAMPAIGN COMMITTEE Dealers Interested in Government PO Box 245 Jefferson City MO 65102 11/13/2017 $10,000.00

[emphasis added]

Yep, that’s a lot of interest.

Previously:

Campaign Finance: restocking the cupboard (November 7, 2017)

Campaign Finance: paying it backwards (November 10, 2017)

A tale of two Roys, Blunt and Moore

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The fact that the Alabama GOP selected as its senatorial candidate a fanatical rightwing Christian who, while in his thirties, attempted to seduce teenagers as young as 14 years puts the onus on the erstwhile party of evangelicals to take a stand on his suitability to serve. Given that many were just fine with President P**** Grabber, that may be expecting a little too much. But if not now, when do folks stand up for basic decency and intelligent government?

Every GOP senator needs to let us know whether they’re willing to welcome a Bible-thumping pedophile into the Senate just so they can retain the necessary votes to pack the court with unqualified right-wing nutjobs, cut taxes for wealthy donors, pay for them by shafting the working and middle class, cripple Obamacare, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, and, appropriately, given Moore’s dominionist leanings, eviscerate women’s reproductive health rights.

So far as I know, our Missouri Republican Senator Roy Blunt has tacked for cover. He has, evidently bailed on a scheduled fundraiser for Moore, discretion being the better part of valor after all.  Nevertheless I can’t find a statement from ol’ Roy anywhere – if  you know of one, please let me know. Blunt needs to come clean about whether he’s going to welcome Brother Moore into the Senate or stand up for what we’ve been told are the outstanding GOP family values.

What will Sen. Blunt do when push comes to shove (besides trying to avoid getting to shove)?:

  1. Does Sen. Blunt think it’s OK to allow a man into the Senate who has been the  first to condemn and attempt to punish others for their sexual orientation – to the point of defying the law – while, as an adult, preying on inexperienced young girls?
  2.  Surely Sen. Blunt won’t resort to justifying such predatory behavior by pointing out that in the past social mores sanctioned the marriage of very young women – as others in the GOP have? Or that it’s sanctioned by the Bible? As Kathryn Brightbill points out in an Op-ed in the Los Angeles Times, justifying the sexual exploitation of very  young women is not unknown in extreme evangelical circles all too willling to put the onus on the morally inferior “seductive” female.
  3. Will he try Donald Trump’s dodge? When Trump isn’t saying that nothing’s been proven, he tells us hat he’s just been too busy governing to pay attention to a major scandal stalking his party? Sounds like alot like the way Blunt often attempts to avoid controversy.
  4. Will he stand up for Moore and take his denials at face value? Easy, but dangerous. In spite of Evangelical Rev. Jerry Falwell’s knee jerk support for Moore, it’s a hard case for an intelligent human being to make and Bunt’s not dumb. As Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) declared “the allegations against Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore are more credible than Moore’s denial.”
  5. Or there’s the noncommittal strategy employed by many Republicans – Moore should step aside “if the accusations are true,” even though statements by the young women have been shown to be highly credible and correspond to rumors that had been circulating in Alabama for years.

I’m taking odds that Roy will go for number five. More his “wiggle room” style. Neither here nor there, but right where he needs to be to do the work of his big money cronies. Maybe he’ll sprinkle in a little bit of the “attending to business” meme as well.

Of course, he could do the right thing and condemn the hypocrite and refuse to go along with seating him in the Senate should Moore win his election.

Nah … not Roy. Moral stands aren’t going to become his thing this late in the game.

UPDATE: Maybe Bunt will follow the latest shift in the response of the Senate leadership and disavow Moore after all – a new poll shows Moore’s Democratic challenger up 4 points. In Alabama. And Sen. Blunt’s a good little team player.

 

Campaign Finance: “We’re going to need a bigger boat.”

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Today at the Missouri Ethics Committee for the Democratic Party state House of Representatives campaign committee:

C171047 11/12/2017 House Victory Committee Chipp Polictical Account 1401 Hampton Ave 3rd floor St Louis MO 63139 11/10/2017 $15,000.00

[emphasis added]

It’s a nice start.

Taking Missouri Blue – which means no more Ann Wagner.

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The scuttlebutt is that Rep. Ann Wagner (R-2) is considered “vulnerable” in 2018. It would be a truly marvelous feat to finally dump this classic, hypocritical pearl clutcher who, despite her delicate GOP country club sensibilities, has developed into a colossal President Moron Vulgarian suckup – because who else will help her so vigorously and uncritically in her heartfelt crusade to save wealthy financiers any monetary grief. And how are we going to do it the dumping? We need to prove to the national party financial apparatus that we deserve the resources to do the job. And we do that by mounting a full-bore, hard campaign after we Democrats have chosen one of the excellent candidates who have come forward to contest the seat.

A Forum held last Wednesday allowed many in the 2nd district to get their first look at the likely challengers, Kelli Dunaway, Bill Haas, Mark Osmack, and Cort VanOstran, all together in one place. If you couldn’t make it, here’s a link to video of the Forum.

The Forum was sponsored by the Missouri 2nd District for Change, an organization that is dedicated to getting a the district representation that is actually responsive to the needs of its voters – not Ann Wagner’s cronies. They’ve held several “town halls” to which Wagner has been invited, but, naturally, refused to attend. If you aren’t already part of the group, check out their Facebook page.

And here’s a link to an excellent partial write-up of the proceedings which is particularly concerned with the “bombshell” dropped by contender Kelli-Dunaway, who, after making an excellent case for her candidacy, withdrew for reasons that ought to make us all fighting mad.

Time permitting, after I’ve had a chance to review the video, I’ll post my reactions to what the candidates said and didn’t say – in case anyone is interested.

Organizing for 2018

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In Warrensburg – November 11, 2017.

Renee Hoagenson‘s (D) campaign in the 4th Congrssional District held an organizational meeting for volunteers this afternoon in Warrensburg.

This is the nuts and bolts stuff of campaigns that the general public probably doesn’t understand and hardly ever sees. One year out? Political amateurs always complain that “it’s too soon” or “you’ll peak too early”. They’re amateurs.

A campaign can always raise more money. It can always print more signs and campaign literature. It can always recruit and enlist more volunteers. What it can’t get is more time.

Campaign Finance: paying it backwards

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Caleb Rowden (r) [2016 file photo].

Today at the Missouri Ethics Commission for the republican state senate campaign committee:

C071094 11/10/2017 MISSOURI SENATE CAMPAIGN COMMITTEE Friends of Caleb Rowden 3504 Mexico Gravel Rd Columbia MO 65202 11/8/2017 $15,000.00

[emphasis added]

Recharging. They’ll always have all the money they’ll ever need.

Previously:

Campaign Finance: restocking the cupboard (November 7, 2017)

Sen. Roy Blunt (r): bad timing

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Roy Blunt (r) [2016 file photo].

Today from Senator Roy Blunt (r), via Twitter:

Senator Roy Blunt‏ @RoyBlunt
The Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act, passed out of committee yesterday, would provide law enforcement a critical tool in their efforts to #EndHumanTrafficking
[….]
11:51 AM – 9 Nov 2017

Except in Alabama?

Some of the Twitter responses:

Uh…. Roy Moore?

Does your disapproval of sex criminals extend to disavowing Roy Moore?

It’s Okay If You’re Republican. That’s ol’ Roy’s mantra. It’s how he sleeps at night

Which Roy?