Another thing I asked U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk about was his outspokenness on Illinois’ financial situation. It was one of the many topics I touched on in my item for the St. Louis Beacon.
Click on the video to see why Kirk - a federal officeholder - is speaking out about the actions of leaders in Illinois state government.
A lawsuit was filed yesterday against a redistricted map passed over Gov. Jay Nixon’s objection. You can read more in this story from the St. Louis Beacon.
Click on the above video to see Nixon’s reaction.
I had the honor on Tuesday of going on KWMU’s “St. Louis On The Air” to discuss a series I’ve been contributing to for the St. Louis Beacon about Homeland Security spending. I was joined by Nick Gragnani, the executive director of the St. Louis Area Regional Response System [STARRS].
While I’ve recorded a few commentaries for the station, this was my first time on Don Marsh’s program. It was thoroughly enjoyable and I hope to go again sometime in the future.
You can listen to the broadcast [which is about an hour long] by clicking on the above audio file.
This may not be the most surprising news of the day, but House Speaker Steve Tilley is officially in for the 2012 Lt. Governor’s race.
Tilley, R-Perryville, went on several St. Louis radio stations to make the announcement. He also talked with Jo Mannies of the St. Louis Beacon about parts of his platform.
Until last year, House Speakers had a tough time winning election to other offices. Steve Gaw failed to become Secretary of State or win a congressional seat, Jim Kreider fell short of snagging a Missouri Senate seat and Catherine Hanaway lost a bid to become secretary of state.
That “curse” was broken, so to speak, when then-House Speaker Ron Richard won election to a Joplin state Senate seat. He ran unopposed.
U.S. Rep. Todd Akin, R-Wildwood, has been under fire this week for at stating on a radio show that “the heart of liberalism really is a hatred for God and a belief that government should replace God.”
The statement from the U.S. Senate candidate was made during a radio interview with Focus on the Family’s Tony Perkins. It came during a discussion about NBC’s decision to take out the word “under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance during a golf tournament.
More from the St. Louis Beacon:
In the radio interview, Akin and Perkins were discussing NBC’s decision, during its coverage of the U.S. Open golf tournament, to cut out the phrase “under God” from its taped segment of the pledge.
Akin got into his Pledge Protection Act mode and contended that NBC’s act “was done systematically, it was done intentionally, and is tremendously corrosive in terms of all of the values and everything that’s made America unique and such a special nation.”
He then went on say, “I think NBC has a long record of being very liberal and at the heart of liberalism really is a hatred for God and a belief that government should replace God. And so they’ve had a long history of not being at all favorable toward many of things that have been such a blessing to our country.”
Those comments, according to the Beacon, prompted a rebuke from several religious leaders. And on Monday, Akin refused to apologize during an interview with Mark Reardon on KMOX.
Ultimately, Akin released this statement yesterday on his Web site:
“People, who know me and my family, know that we take our faith and beliefs very seriously. As Christians, we would never question the sincerity of anyone’s personal relationship with God. My statement during my radio interview was directed at the political movement, Liberalism not at any specific individual. If my statement gave a different impression, I offer my apologies.
The Beacon added the aforementioned religious leaders show up at Akin’s Ballwin office today.
Do the Missouri House and the Missouri Senate have an acrimonious relationship? That was one of the questions explored in an article for the St. Louis Beacon:
The two chambers also dueled over a proposal to help finance a new nuclear plant and over a bill to stiffen the state’s requirements for initiative-petition drives. The Senate killed both.
The notable exceptions, where the chambers did work together, were social issues like guns and abortion. The House and Senate seemed to try to outdo each other in expanding the rights to carry guns — even in the state Capitol — while imposing further restrictions on women seeking abortions.
Otherwise, tensions between chambers were high, even though both are controlled by Repubicans. At one point during the final day, House Majority Leader Tim Jones, R-Eureka, angrily Tweeted that his chamber “continues to pass good government bills,” while the Missouri Senate’s “legislative terrorists continue to kill them.”
I asked House Speaker Steve Tilley, R-Perryville, about the relationship with the two chambers. Tilley also answered a question about whether the House would have passed a nuclear site permit bill had it made it through the Missouri Senate. Click on the video to hear more.
Here’s the first video of House Speaker Steve Tilley, R-Perryville, taking stock of this year’s legislative session. While lawmakers failed to pass a wide-ranging tax credit bill and local control of the St. Louis Police Department, they did manage to pass a host of other items.
Will local control and Aerotropolis make it?
With only a few short hour left in the 2011 legislative session, those two notable issues still hang in the balance. Jo Mannies and I have more in our article for the St. Louis Beacon:
State Sen. Eric Schmitt, R-Glendale, said late Thursday that progress has been made — but work still remains — to forge a House-Senate agreement on state tax credit revisions that include $360 million in breaks aimed at boosting the St. Louis region’s effort to persuade China to locate a cargo hub at Lambert St. Louis International Airport.
The deal also has been linked by Senate leaders to any approval by that chamber of a separate bill granting St. Louis city officials local control over the city’s police department, which has been under state supervision for 150 years.
Schmitt (right) — the Senate’s leader of the China hub effort, dubbed “Aerotropolis” — cautioned that House negotiators’ tax-break proposals may not be acceptable to the full Senate. The deal is dead if it is not approved by both chambers by 6 p.m. today, when this legislative session ends.
Lack of an agreement on tax credits likely also will doom St. Louis’ quest for local control.
I caught up with newly-minted congressional candidate Ed Martin today at McArthur’s Bakery in south St. Louis County.
I asked Martin about the prospect of a GOP primary, the fact that he doesn’t reside in the 2nd Congressional District and whether the dynamics of the race change compared to 2010 since the district is more Republican.