Missouri Senate leader’s tweet about drag performance helped kickstart controversy

BY: - January 31, 2023

With a single tweet, Missouri Senate President Pro Tem Caleb Rowden turned a local controversy over what Columbia Public Schools told parents about the drag entertainment at a city diversity breakfast into a state issue. At 8:44 p.m. on Jan. 19, Rowden wrote that his “office has been inundated with calls & emails re: grade […]

Missouri Republican pushes to legalize ‘magic mushrooms’ to treat depression, PTSD

BY: - January 30, 2023

The magic in “magic mushrooms” may be the ability to defeat post-traumatic stress disorder, and a St. Charles County Republican lawmaker wants to make them legal in a treatment setting. State Rep. Tony Lovasco of O’Fallon isn’t a hippie. He says he’s never taken psilocybin mushrooms or smoked a joint. “I’ve never even smoked a […]

Push for open enrollment picks up steam as Missouri GOP focuses on education bills

BY: - January 30, 2023

The push to allow Missouri students to transfer out of their home district and direct tax money toward their new school of choice is picking up momentum, with a state Senate committee set to approve a pair of bills this week. The bills — one that would allow public districts and charter schools to open […]

Four bills making initiative petition process harder passed by Missouri House committee

BY: - January 26, 2023

A Missouri House committee approved four versions of proposals to overhaul the initiative petition process Thursday on party-line votes, despite warnings of well-funded opposition if lawmakers put one on the ballot. The differences among the competing proposals were enough that House Elections Committee Chairwoman Peggy McGaugh, R-Carrollton, said she didn’t feel comfortable combining them. “I […]

Judge says Missouri House rule limiting access to public records is constitutional

BY: - January 26, 2023

A Cole County judge has concluded that a rule implemented by the Missouri House in 2019 allowing lawmakers to withhold certain information from public records does not violate the state constitution.  The lawsuit was filed by Mark Pedroli, founder of the Sunshine and Government Accountability Project. He challenged a rule adopted by the Missouri House […]

Missouri Republicans push for state to take over control of St. Louis police department

BY: - January 25, 2023

Kansas City is the only major city in the country where the city’s elected leaders don’t control the local police department — a state-appointed police board does. Up until 2013, St. Louis was in the same boat.  However, the city gained local control of its police department after a 2012 statewide referendum.  Now 10 years […]

Missouri committee debates transgender sports, healthcare, drag shows for nine hours

BY: - January 25, 2023

The Neiss family drove from St. Louis to Jefferson City on Tuesday, a trip they’ve made many times over the past four years. The reason is always the same: Legislation they fear will harm their transgender son. On the agenda Tuesday night in the House General Laws Committee were a litany of bills aimed at […]

GOP renews push to block Missouri cities, counties from mandating EV charging stations

BY: - January 25, 2023

Requiring business owners to install electric vehicle chargers is an infringement on their freedoms and a mandate they can’t afford, members of a Missouri House committee argued Wednesday.  Primarily Republican lawmakers voiced support during a committee hearing on legislation that would require cities and counties to pay for electric vehicle chargers in order to mandate […]

Missouri realtors vow to fight GOP push to make it harder to amend state constitution

BY: - January 24, 2023

The Missouri Association of Realtors, an organization that spent millions in recent years on two successful initiative petition campaigns, is warning lawmakers it will oppose anything more than tinkering with the way the constitution is amended by voters. During testimony Tuesday before the House Elections and Elected Officials Committee, Sam Licklider, lobbyist for the realtors, […]

Sweeping education bill clears Missouri Senate committee without anti-transgender provision

BY: - January 24, 2023

A Senate committee removed a controversial proposal targeting transgender athletes from a wide-ranging education bill Tuesday, but the committee’s chair indicated more debate to come on the issue. On a six to three vote along party lines, the Senate Education and Workforce Development Committee approved legislation that would dictate how history and race are taught […]

Missouri Supreme Court hears AG’s opposition to prosecutor’s jurisdiction in innocence claim

BY: - January 24, 2023

The Missouri Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday from the state’s attorney general opposing yet another local prosecutor’s attempt to argue the innocence of a man convicted of murder. This time the case was for Michael Politte, a man who was charged with murdering his mother in 1999 when he was 15.  In May, former Washington […]

Donor privacy law being used by Missouri agencies to conceal public records

BY: - January 24, 2023

Over the course of two nights in early December, Gov. Mike Parson hosted a holiday gala for individuals and corporations who donated money to the nonprofit that helps maintain the Missouri Governor’s Mansion.  Who were the big donors who cut a check and got to dine with Parson and his taxpayer-funded staff? The Governor’s office […]