Luetkemeyer Says Feds Got Missouri CCP Data, But Never Did Anything With It, Says Procedures Violated
April 15, 2013

hand guns for saleMid-Missouri Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer says the Missouri Highway Patrol improperly transferred sensitive personal data about concealed weapon permit holders in Missouri to the federal government. Luetkemeyer, however says it doesn’t appear the a federal investigator stored or shared the records.
At a Monday news conference Luetkemeyer says he tracked the transfer of information back to a Social Security investigator who contacted the state Highway Patrol.
Luetkemeyer says a Social Security Inspector General, Patrick O”Carroll, says formal protocol was violated becuase, “a formal, written request was never provided to the Missouri State Highway Patrol for the data, which the law enforcement agency received from the Missouri Department of Revenue (DOR),” according to a Luetkemeyer news release issued Monday.
Luetkemeyer says in 2011, a Social Security Administration employee of the Office of Inspector General informally requested the information from the State Patrol. The information was provided, but it was unreadable on the investigator’s computer.
In late 2012, the same investigator made the same sort of request to the State Highway Patrol. This time, data on somewhere between 160,000-187,00 concealed weapons permit holders was provided.
When the investigator called the Social Security office, he was told to destroy the sensitive information.
Under Missouri law, the information provided in CCW permits is not public.
Luetkemeyer says the information was never shared or made public.
“Clearly, at the federal level, mistakes were made and there appear to be some significant inconsistencies between what state officials have said and what actually occurred and that is extremely troublesome given the impact this has had on the personal rights of thousands of lawful Missouri gun owners,” Luetkemeyer said in a statement. “I fully respect the Inspector General’s mission of curbing disability fraud and ending waste and abuse in the Social Security Administration, but the way that this investigation took place is unacceptable.”

Federal Lawmakers Worry About Sequestration Cuts Affecting Small Airports
March 15, 2013

(AP) — Several Congress members from Missouri are raising questions about a federal plan to close air traffic control towers at some local airports.
The Federal Aviation Administration recently released a list of 238 airports were control towers could be closed as a result of budget cuts enacted under the so-called sequester. The list includes airports for five Missouri cities – Branson, Columbia, Jefferson City, Joplin and St. Joseph.
U.S. Reps. Sam Graves, Vicky Hartzler, Billy Long and Blaine Luetkemeyer wrote to federal aviation officials saying the potential cuts appear to disproportionately fall on airports that use contractors for air traffic controllers. They said the federal proposal “borders on reckless behavior.”
The Congress members want the FAA to explain why airports with contracted control towers should receive larger cuts.
Earflier this wewek, Kansas Senator jerry Moran made a similar move in support of Kansas airports.

Gun Debate Starts in KC After POTUS Plans
January 17, 2013

Missouri Senator Roy Blunt says he doesn’t think any of the proposals by president Obama to deal with violence in America will have prevented the deadly shootings at the sandy Hook School in Connenticuit.

“There are no laws that is being proposed that would have prevented that young man from having the weapons he had, or is mother from buying it, “ Blunt said Wednesday at a Kansas City news conference.

“Conneticiut is one of the hardest states anywhere to get a weapon,” Blunt added.

Blunt says there may be room for working on mental health reforms. He said he and some other Members of the senate are working on that tytpe of legislation.

Another former member of Congress, Todd Tiahrt is also critical of some of the 23 executive orders the president signed to try and change federal rules and regulations on gun safety and gun research.

Tiahrt sponsored several measures to insure the privacy of gun owners.

Some of those measures restrict how deeply investigators can probe into gun crimes.

Taihrt told KMBC TV Wednesday those privacy measures are important.

“It does prohibit them from prying into private information,” Tiahrt said.

“It protects the privacy of firearms owners, just like your medical records or financial records, for that matter,” Tiahrt said.

A Kansas City gun instructor says he does favor one of the president’s proposals, more comprehensive background checks for guns sales, including private transactions.

“I agree”, said instructor Joe Moran, “just to see who has weapons, especially the mentally disabled.”

Moran, however, believes overall the president plans, are infringing on the Second American right of Americans who own guns.

“That’s hogwash”, said Al Brooks of Kansas City’s Ad Hoc Committee Against Crime.

Brooks stated, “it has nothing to do with the second Amendment. It has to do with the right of people to live.“

After the president announced his plans, other Member of Congress from the area chimed in on the debate.

Kansas Senator Pat Roberts said, “

“I will fight proposals in the Senate that threaten our 2nd Amendment rights and fail to take real action to curb a culture of gun violence in America. I fully support enforcing the gun laws currently on the books instead of creating new ones that erode basic rights of self-protection. It has been statistically proven that passing gun legislation has no effect on removing guns from the hands of criminals. In the end, it is law-abiding citizens who are punished by gun control.

“Out of the 23 executive actions the President announced today, only a few addressed the mentally ill, a largely taboo and marginalized segment of our society. With the emphasis mostly on gun control, the President avoided serious measures to tackle the increasingly violent culture in America.”

Kansas City Rep Emanuel Cleaver:

“Congress must now step up, work together, and use common sense. While those in Washington continue talking – I am focused on listening to my constituents here at home. I, like most Americans, believe in universal background checks. I support a ban on military assault rifles and a limit on high-capacity magazines. These weapons of war are meant to kill,” said U.S. Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, II. “I support the Second Amendment and the rights of individuals to bear arms. I also support the rights of children to go safely to school, the movie theater, and the local mall.”

Missouri Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler:

“The Newtown massacre was a horrifically violent act, but rash gun control legislation will not keep our children safer. Many of the President’s proposals simply act to restrict the ability of law abiding citizens to protect their families. Proposals that focus on enforcing our current laws, requiring federal agencies to provide information on criminals to the FBI’s background check database, and giving states the necessary flexibility to protect our children have merit. Additionally, we must have a meaningful conversation about mental health issues and other societal contributors to violent behavior rather than simplistically attacking the tool used by criminals.”

Missouri Representative Blaine Luetkemeyer:

“I am disappointed by the president’s remarks and actions today. The Administration’s decision to circumvent the elected representatives of the American people is surely not the right way to approach an issue of constitutional significance. It would be more productive to have a thoughtful, national discussion on how to better determine when young people are becoming troubled, how to get them back on the right path, and what causes an individual to commit an evil, violent act. We need to focus on getting to the root of these questions, rather than focusing on the instruments that disturbed individuals have misused and abused to carry out heinous crimes. Firearms are lawfully owned and used by millions of responsible Americans for purposes such as self-defense, hunting, and recreation, and as a strong supporter of the Second Amendment, I will work to protect our constitutional right to keep and bear arms.”

Missouri Returns All of It’s Congressional Delegation to DC, No House Upsets
November 7, 2012

(AP) — Two years’ of legislative gridlock in Washington didn’t keep Missouri voters from again selecting each of the state’s seven incumbent members of Congress in Tuesday’s general election.

First-term Rep. Vicky Hartzler, a Republican, held off Democratic challenger Teresa Hensley in the most closely-watched race in Missouri’s 4th District. Hartzler earned national attention in 2010 with her upset of long-time Rep. Ike Skelton.

In suburban St. Louis, former state and national GOP leader Ann Wagner won the open 2nd Congressional District seat created by Rep. Todd Akin’s decision to run for U.S. Senate. The one-time U.S. ambassador to Luxembourg and co-chair of the Republican National Committee during former President George W. Bush’s first term defeated Valley Park Democrat Glenn Koenen.

The suburban St. Louis district was Missouri’s only open U.S. House seat this year. Both Wagner and Koenen won multi-candidate party primaries in August to advance to the general election.

Hartzler, a former teacher and state lawmaker who helped lead the successful fight for a 2004 state ballot measure banning gay marriage, called her win a victory for “common sense ideas and heartland values.” A staunch opponent of President Obama’s administration, she pledged to “look for common ground” with Democrats over the next two years, particularly on economic issues.

Hensley called the campaign “the most amazing journey” and complimented her opponent’s decisive win. The Democrat said she expects to seek another term as Cass County prosecutor when she is up for re-election in 2014.

“We knew this was going to be a tough district to run in,” Hensley said. “I was very proud of the campaign we ran. I don’t have any regrets.”

As a House freshman in a redrawn district, Hartzler was considered the most vulnerable of the seven congressional incumbents. Hensley and her supporters hoped that the addition of Columbia after the once-a-decade redrawing of congressional boundaries would give the Democrat an advantage among the college town’s largely liberal voting base.

Hensley started out strong, raising more money than Hartzler in the first few months while attracting outside attention from inside the Beltway. But that fundraising advantage soon evaporated as the expected support from national Democratic campaign committees largely didn’t materialize.

In the city of St. Louis, six-term Congressman William Lacy Clay Jr. defeated Republican challenger Robyn Hamlin for the second consecutive time in Missouri’s 1st District.

Clay had to fend off fellow Rep. Russ Carnahan in an August Democratic primary after redistricting matched the two incumbents, both sons of long-time state politicians. Carnahan had chosen to face Clay rather than seek an open seat in the 2nd District.

In a revamped 3rd District, Republican Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer won a third term, defeating Democratic business owner Eric C. Mayer. The new district stretches from western St. Charles County to Lake of the Ozarks and now includes Jefferson City, which had been part of the 4th District. Missouri lost its ninth district because of population declines in the latest U.S. Census.

In Kansas City, former mayor Emanuel Cleaver turned back yet another effort by perennial opponent Jacob Turk, defeating his Republican challenger in Missouri’s 5th District for the fourth straight time. Cleaver is chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus.

In northwest Missouri, Republican Rep. Sam Graves won a seventh term by defeating Democrat Kyle Yarber of Gladstone in the 6th District. In southwest Missouri, first-term Rep. Billy Long of Springfield turned back Democrat Jim Evans of Republic in the 7th District.

And in southeast Missouri, Jo Ann Emerson of Cape Girardeau, the state’s longest-serving member of Congress, beat Poplar Bluff chiropractor Jack Rushin in the 8th District to win her ninth term in the House.

Missouri Congressmen Clay and Luetkemeyer Don’t Use Twitter, Most Members Do
September 26, 2012

Twitter inventor Jack Dorsey, who grew up in St. Louis, once observed that his microblogging service was so named because it defined “a short burst of inconsequential information.”
Cynics might say that his definition suits this unproductive Congress, where all but 56 members of the Senate and House combined use Twitter, according to a count by The Hill, a newspaper on Capitol Hill.
Reps. William Lacy Clay, D-St. Louis, and Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-St. Elizabeth, are worlds apart in their approaches to public policy, but they apparently share an aversion to office tweeting. Clay and Luetkemeyer are the only members of Congress from the St. Louis area who do not have a Twitter account in their congressional offices, according to the list published today in The Hill.
Clay is active on Facebook and has a Twitter account connected to his re-election campaign that had 588 followers as of this afternoon. It wasn’t clear right away why he doesn’t tweet as a congressman. (Or have someone tweet for him, as if often the case.)
Luetkemeyer spokesman Paul Sloca said his member of Congress prefers “communicating in interactions in real time” and uses Facebook and YouTube to do some of that.
Sloca added: “Blaine is really focused on having a conversation in which you can have context … and talk in depth about the substance of issues.”
What, no context and depth in 140 characters?