Archive for the ‘Missouri Politics’ Category

Bid for Early Voting in Missouri Might Fall Short
August 1, 2014

A Missouri proposal to create one of the most expansive early voting periods in the nation appears to have fallen short of reaching the November ballot, according to an Associated Press analysis of initiative petition signatures.

The AP review of signature counts conducted by Missouri’s local election authorities found that the proposed constitutional amendment on early voting lacks enough valid signatures of registered voters in all but two of the state’s eight congressional districts.

To qualify for the ballot, initiatives must get signatures equal 8 percent of the votes cast in the last gubernatorial election in at least six of the congressional districts.

Missouri currently allows absentee voting only in limited circumstances when people attest that they won’t be able to vote in person on Election Day. The initiative proposed a 42-day, no-excuse-needed early voting period that would have been one of the longest in the nation and also would have allowed votes to be cast on weekends.

If the early voting measure misses the ballot, it would mark a significant setback for Democratic-aligned groups that had spent about $700,000 on the initiative petition drive in hopes that the early voting period would win approval this year and be in place for the 2016 presidential and gubernatorial elections.

The AP analysis shows that a separate proposed constitutional amendment did appear to get enough valid signatures. That measure would limit teacher tenure protections and require public schools to make personnel decisions based largely on student performance data.

Secretary of State Jason Kander has until next Tuesday to officially certify — or reject — initiatives to appear on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Those documents show that the early voting measure got well more than the needed signatures in Missouri’s two Democratic-leaning regions, the 1st District in St. Louis and the 5th District that extends eastward from Kansas City.

But the AP analysis shows that the initiative appears to be more than 1,300 signatures short in the 4th District, which includes Columbia and parts of west-central Missouri; more than 2,200 short in the 2nd District in suburban St. Louis; more than 2,600 short in southwest Missouri’s 7th District; and more than 5,800 short in northern Missouri’s 6th District. The petition drive did not aggressively target the state’s 3rd and 8th Congressional Districts.

Missouri Primary Turn Out call: 27%
August 1, 2014

(AP) — Missouri election authorities are predicting about one in four voters will cast ballots in next week’s primaries.

Statewide voter turnout on Tuesday is projected at nearly 1.1 million people – about 27 percent of the almost 4.1 million Missourians registered to vote.

The turnout projections are compiled from figures collected by the secretary of state’s office from each of Missouri’s 116 local election jurisdictions.

They range from a projected high of 69 percent in northeast Missouri’s Knox County to a low of 9 percent in southern Missouri’s Howell County.

The primaries include contested races for state and federal legislative seats as well as county offices.

The ballot also features five proposed constitutional amendments, including one imposing a sales tax for transportation.

Mayor Sky Thinks Old West Had Tougher Gun Control Laws Than Missouri
July 31, 2014

Kansas City, Missouri Mayor Sly James said the Old Wild West would have tighter gun control laws than Missouri, if the state permits openly carrying of firearms.

James said that as he and the Kansas City Council voted to ban openly carrying guns within the city limits.

“You used to have to drop your guns off at the sheriff’s office when you got to town,” James said.

Kevin Jamsion of the Western Missouri Shooters Alliance said the Mayor has his history of the Old West wrong.

“If you read the ‘Oxford History of the American West’, you’ll see those laws were selectively enforced,’ said Jamison.

He added, “Doc Holliday had a concealed weapons permit in Tombstone because he was a friend of the marshal’s.

James says citizens openly carrying guns in Kansas City might make the work of police officers more difficult. They would have to determine if someone with a weapon on display had criminal intentions.

Jamison asked the Mayor to cite any example in Kansas City’s history of an advocate of openly carrying a weapon of doing something unsafe.

James also used the small town of lake Ozark, Missouri as an example of an outstate Missouri community that thought open carry was not fitted for that town either.

The city changed another portion of it gun law.

It re-worked laws to comply with the Missouri laws that permit an intoxicated person to have a firearm. Earlier this year, the Council refused to change its local ordinances on the matter even though the Council was told it had no choice.

The latest Kansas City Council move could place the city on the opposite side of the state’s gun laws again.

Missouri legislators may try to override Governor Jay Nixon’s veto of the open carry law lawmakers passed this session. The veto session takes place in September.

Another member of the Kansas City Council also used the comparison to the Old West.

Councilman Scott Taylor told the council of what one citizen said to him.

“That person said, I love to live in the Midwest. I just don’t want to live in the Old West. And that’s what this would be like, with people walking around with guns,” Taylor said.

White House Says Obama Will Meet Letter Writers During KC Visit
July 29, 2014

The White House released this video of Press Secretary Josh Ernest inviting several people who have written letter to President Obama to meet with him in Kansas City:

Nixon Says Missouri Schools Should Get “Oomph” From Lottery Sales
July 25, 2014

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon wants business experts to explain the state lottery’s books.
In Kansas. City Thursday, Nixon shed some more light on his call for the state lottery tone examined.
The Governor says since ticket sales are going up, then the state’s school budget shoUld be getting more money.
“Now ( lottery sales) it’s 1-point-1 billio, over 1.1 billion in income and still only transferring under $300 million. We want to look at that from a business perspective. That’s why the folks to lok at this. We’ve got to get more oomph out of that,” Nixon said.
The lottery’s chief operating officer, Gary Gonder, told the Associated Press in an e- mail, the kinds of games the public plays makes a big difference.
Gonder says most Missouri play scratch-off lottery games. he says those games have a higher percentage pay-out in prizes. Gonder told the AP that results in less money going to education even though sales are growing

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