The Buzz

Former Mike Parson chief of staff says no way he’s voting for him this year

UPDATED with Parson spokesman response.

Bubs Hohulin worked as state Sen. Mike Parson’s chief of staff for two years, and that was enough to convince him that Parson should not be Missouri’s next lieutenant governor.

A former 12-year Republican House member, Hohulin said Sunday he’ll be voting for Democrat Russ Carnahan this fall.

"So many people in the Capitol have been on the receiving end of his tirades," Hohulin said of Parson in an interview with The Buzz.

A spokesman for Parson, James Harris, responded Sunday evening with a one-sentence statement:

“Mister Hohulin is a disgruntled former employee whose employment was terminated due to poor job performance.”

On July 29, Hohulin, a former 12-year House member from Lamar, posted his thoughts on Parson in a Facebook post. This was just prior to the Aug. 2 primary where Parson squared off against fellow Republican Bev Randles. Parson won.

Hohulin, 52, said the experience working for Parson in 2013 and 2014 was so stressful it landed him in the hospital with heart-attack symptoms.

In his post, he criticized Parson’s poor understanding of the issues and the senator’s fear of "looking dumb" that made him reticent to ask questions.

"I witnessed him agreeing to propose legislation on behalf of lobbyists who had contributed to his campaign without having any idea what the legislation actually did," Hohulin wrote.

But that wasn’t the worst.

"The thing that probably bothered me the most was the way he treated people he deemed to be beneath him," Hohulin said.

Parson's tirades were common.

"What was really upsetting was how he would brutally unload on someone behind closed doors who was actually doing their best to make him look good to the voting public," Hohulin said, adding later, "We do not want someone this volatile occupying the office that is only one heartbeat away from the governor's desk."

He said Parson once proposed a $50,000 plan to hire a state worker "to park and retrieve vehicles in the basement parking garage of the Capitol.

"I have no benefit either way to be writing this piece. I am no longer in office nor am I affiliated with any candidate or elected official. My interest is solely rooted in the hope we can elect candidates who understand the true meaning of public service."