The Buzz

August 10, 2014

Jay Nixon won’t take blame for highway tax defeat

And ... the legendary late John Britton talks about the art of lobbying ... Britton, known by some as the "35th senator" because of his influence, died last week.

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“The people spoke. When you have numbers that large (voting against the tax) and you have people speak in that dramatic a fashion that represents a clear reflection of Missouri’s position on that issue right now.” — Gov. Jay Nixon refusing to accept responsibility for the defeat of the three-quarters-cent sales tax bump for transportation.

Nixon spoke on Saturday about the tax, which only picked up about 40 percent support. Highway advocates said Nixon’s decision to stick the proposal on the August ballot doomed it because primaries draw limited number of voters who tend to be more motivated and many of those are conservative. Either way, figuring out how to fund highways is now a major issue for Nixon and the General Assembly.

“You also have to be willing to have the physical strength to talk to 120 people in the House and 25 in the Senate on any given issue.” — long-time Jefferson City lobbyist John Britton on the art of lobbying. (link via johncombest.com).

Britton died last week and his funeral was Sunday in Jefferson City. He was known by some as the “35th senator” because of the influence he wielded in the building for half a century.

“They just can’t come down here and flash their money and think they can buy a seat. And that’s what they tried to do.” — Missouri state Rep. Paul Fitzwater, a Potosi Republican, on the attempt by the wealthy GOP billionaire Rex Sinquefield to defeat Fitzwater and three other Republicans who opposed a tax cut last year.

Sinquefield flashed his money, all right, but fell short in all four races.

“Everything is terrible.” — one unnamed pollster in a Politico story about the country’s lousy mood.

The president gets bad reviews. So do the Democrats. So do Republicans. So do incumbents. So does...sugar. No kidding. (Check out the story).

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