The Missouri AG candidates are still hammering each other — over Chinese farm ownership and beards. Sen. Roy Blunt and Missouri Democrats mixed it up over anti-Zika funding and fundraising. And did Catherine Hanaway really prosecute 4,000 cases?
To the trail!
☆ Missouri GOP Governor
For a donation to Eric Greitens, you can proudly display an ISIS hunting permit. No limit, by the way. The request caused ripples across the nation. Greitens appeared on Fox and Friends to claim the fight against ISIS isn’t just overseas.
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To no one’s surprise, Hanaway criticized Gov. Jay Nixon for his veto of the gun bill. So did Peter Kinder. More here.
In an ad, Hanaway claims she prosecuted 4,000 cases. Inquisitive readers ask: is that accurate? After all, she served as U.S. Attorney for just four years — that would mean she prosecuted almost four cases every business day.
Answer: The number should not be taken literally. A better phrase: her office brought more than 4,000 cases during her time in the U.S. Attorney’s office.
Missouri Right to Life PAC endorsed three GOP candidates for governor, as we first reported, but not Greitens. That caused a few rumbles this week, and Greitens responded with a video.
He also launched a new TV ad entitled “Suicide Truck Bomb.”
☆ Missouri Senate
Compare these press release headlines:
“Jason Kander Opposes Veterans, Zika, NGA Funding”
“Senator (Roy) Blunt Admits He Skipped Crucial Zika Negotiations But Still Had Time for 2 Fundraisers”
The U.S. Senate race in Missouri stung this week, with both parties swarming over funding for fighting the dread Zika virus.
Our Lindsay Wise has a fine round-up of the back-and-forth here. And while we’re at it: is there anything more depressing, yet utterly predictable, than the politicization of the Zika response?
Roll Call said Thursday Kander is one of the strongest challengers in the country this cycle. Kander also claimed the support of liberal Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Thursday.
Blunt’s campaign hit Kander for hiring campaign staff after the election. “Kander spent thousands of government dollars over the past four years on salaries for former campaign employees,” a release said.
The claim angered the Kander folks, who say 12 percent of Blunt’s employees after the 2010 election worked in his campaign. By contrast, they claim, 1.8 percent of Kander’s employees were campaign veterans.
☆ Missouri GOP Attorney General
The trench warfare continues....
Tea Party Patriots, a national nonprofit conservative organization, is out to get state Sen. Kurt Schaefer. In a new ad, the group accuses Schaefer of pushing legislation benefiting clients of his law firm, allowing Missouri farm land to be purchased by foreign corporations.
Watch it here:
Schaefer responded with a website.
The State Conservative Reform Action PAC out of Virginia said it would spend $1 million opposing Schaefer and supporting opponent Josh Hawley.
Hawley took fire this week in ads criticizing his role in a lawsuit over a terrorist’s beard.
Schaefer got a $20,000 contribution from David Steward, who served on the University of Missouri Board of Curators from 2011 until he resigned Feb. 1.
Candidates on both sides of the state line were in a frenzy to score last-minute political donations before the midnight June 30 deadline.
This matters. The fund-raising numbers will be released in mid-July, and they will give the public a sense of who’s attracting early support before the August primary vote two weeks later
Donations don’t necessarily win elections. But they are seen as a signal of strength.
Our favorite frantic solicitations:
“URGENT: Only 12 hours left!” trumpeted in an email blast from GOP gubernatorial candidate Catherine Hanaway.
And...``What can $10 do?” from rival Peter Kinder.
☆ Kansas 01 House GOP primary
Out in western Kansas, incumbent Congressman Tim Huelskamp was facing a feisty challenge from rival Republican Roger Marshall.
An issue in a debate this week in Hutchinson? The fact that Huelskamp lost his seat on the House Ag Committee. Members of Congress from the district since the days of Lincoln have served on the farm panel.
Bob Dole, who once held the First District seat, weighed in with just his second Twitter post ever, admonishing Huelskamp to focus on issues instead of misleading attacks.
☆ The White House
We can’t help but note that polling guru Nate Silver this week forecast that Hillary Clinton has nearly an 80 percent chance of winning the November election.