The Buzz

TheChat: Higher ed costs in Missouri going up, up, up


Good morning.

▪ “Someone's going to pay for the education, and it is being passed on to students and families.” — Missouri state Auditor Nicole Galloway on the rising cost of attending college in the state — a cost that students, and their families, are bearing.

The not surprising news: Galloway and her auditors found that tuition and fees at public four-year universities rose 25 percent per full-time student between fiscal years 2009 and 2015.

▪ “Consider.” — leadership in the Missouri House and Senate in response to an audit report recommendation that called for development of a whistleblowers policy.

Such a policy would protect workers from retaliation for reporting abuse of authority. The notion that leaders will “consider” such a policy strikes us as a little soft. This is the Missouri General Assembly, after all, where laws are crafted. Expecting lawmakers to abide by those very laws is the least the public can expect. Let’s get a whistleblower policy developed and on the books.

▪ “I don’t even know if there would be time to do an adequate confirmation process after the election.” — Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill on the prospect that the Senate might confirm Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court after the election should Hillary Clinton win in November.

Confirmation hearings take time, and McCaskill isn’t convinced there’d be enough of it to push Garland’s nomination forward.

▪ “Whether I’m with a bunch of agriculture groups or financial institutions, manufacturers, home buildings — it’s the fact that they feel like the federal government is trying to put them out of business or extort money from them.” — Kansas Congresswoman Lynn Jenkins explaining that overbearing regulation is the issue she hears the most about.

It’s not health care or taxes, but federal government intrusion that comes up most often, Jenkins said. Her Democratic opponent, Britani Potter, hears a lot about the corrosive influence of big money in politics.