The Buzz

TheChat: Tony Messenger recalls last conversations with Tom Schweich

Good morning.

▪ “On Tuesday morning we talked for about half an hour as he shared a situation with me that he said was causing him significant angst and asked for my confidence and advice.” — St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorial page editor Tony Messenger about a conversation he had with former state Auditor Tom Schweich two days before he died.

That issue was political consultant John Hancock telling GOP donors of Schweich’s Jewish heritage. This has placed Hancock, who was elected party chair nine days ago, in a tenuous position. Messenger has laid out his interactions with Schweich in a statement. (link courtesy of

▪ “It’s really scary.” — LaDonna Appelbaum, a recipient of health coverage under the Affordable Care Act, on how she’d feel if the Supreme Court rules against the act and causes her to lose her coverage.

Appelbaum and about tens of thousands of other residents in Missouri receive subsidies for their coverage that they might lose under an adverse court ruling. No subsidies likely means that many of those covered would have to give up their plans. The Supreme Court hears arguments on the case this week.

▪ “Where in the world are we going to get $2.5 million?” — Kansas state Sen. Greg Smith, an Overland Park Republican, on the estimated cost of providing Highway Patrol officers with body cameras.

Smith and other Republicans wondered how small municipalities would fund body cameras if the state required it. Lawmakers have removed a body-camera requirement from a bill now moving through the Legislature. Democrat David Haley, a Kansas City, Kan., state senator, said he wanted the mandate back in the bill.

▪ “I’m not going to suggest it’s easy.” — House Speaker John Boehner on Sunday talking about the challenge of leading the GOP House caucus in Washington.

Boehner and Republicans have disagreed about funding the Department of Homeland Security, a dispute that’s raised questions about whether Boehner’s standing as speaker is in jeopardy. Boehner called the House a “rambunctious place” and insisted there’s no rift among Republicans.