News Clips by F8bZ59

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MESSAGES TO MO. GOV. TOP 10K ON CONTRACEPTION BILL
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon now has received more than 10,000 messages urging him to sign or
veto legislation related to health insurance coverage for contraception.

Nixon has scheduled a Thursday news conference to announce his action on legislation. That comes a couple days ahead of
a Saturday deadline for him to sign, veto or allow bills to become law without his signature.

The health insurance measure passed by the Republican-led Legislature takes a shot at President Barack Obama's health
care policies. It states that employers and health plan providers cannot be compelled to cover contraception, sterilization
or abortion if that runs contrary to their religious or moral beliefs. The bill also allows the attorney general to sue
government officials or others who infringe on the rights granted in the measure.
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REPUBLICANS URGE NIXON TO SIGN AUTO SALES TAX LEGISLATION
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — As Gov. Jay Nixon closes in on a July 14 deadline to sign or veto legislation, Republican lawmakers are
urging him to sign a bill that would allow Missouri localities to instate a sales tax on vehicles sold outside of the state.

The General Assembly approved the legislation late in session, but Gov. Jay Nixon has threatened to veto it claiming it is a
tax increase on Missourians that has not been voted on by the people.

Speaking with reporters earlier this week, Republican Floor Leader Tim Jones, R-St. Louis, urged Nixon to join “an
overwhelming bipartisan” majority of lawmakers in supporting the measure.

“There is not actual increase in taxation here,” Jones said. “Because of a court decision, we now have a problem — a
loophole — we have to fix.”

The Missouri Supreme Court ruled earlier this year that localities could only impose a sales tax on automobiles purchased
outside of the state only if local voters approved one.

For his part, Nixon again said he opposes the legislation, but would not say what his action will be.

“If you’re going to raise taxes, it has to go to a vote of the people,” Nixon said. “I think it is pretty clear the people have the
right to weigh in on issues like this when you’re talking about taxation on automobiles.”

Jones said he was unsure if the House would be able to override a potential veto from Nixon, noting that it would require
“a few brave Democrats” to vote the same way.

The vehicle sales tax legislation is House Bill 1329.
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GOV. NIXON SIGNS BILL PROTECTING SENIORS
Article | July 12, 2012 - 5:19am | By Michele Skalicky, KSMU/Springfield

A crowd gathered at the Southside Senior Center his morning. Governor Jay Nixon was there to sign a bill designed to
protect senior citizens from financial exploitation.

According to Nixon, it’s estimated that each year in the U.S., senior citizens are swindled out of $2.6 billion.

Senate Bill 689 expands the definition of financial exploitation against seniors and those with disabilities to include “undue
influence…”

According to Nixon, it’s been difficult for prosecutors in financial exploitation cases if the person committing the crime had
legal status as a guardian or power of attorney.

Nixon says the law also protects elderly from physical abuse…

He says that’s regardless of whether injuries sustained were inflicted on purpose or were the result of reckless behavior.

Larry Smith and Mary Netzer, two seniors who were visiting the senior center, say they’re happy to see the bill signed into
law…

Nixon says he’ll continue to work to protect the elderly in Missouri. He encourages seniors to get on the no-call list both on
their home phones and on their cell phones. And he says anyone who is the victim of financial exploitation should contact
authorities.
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SCHOOL CAMPS IN ST. LOUIS AREA AIM TO GIVE INCOMING
KINDERGARTNERS A LEG UP
BY NANCY CAMBRIA • Nancy.Cambria@post-dispatch.com > 314-340-8238 | Posted: Thursday, July 12, 2012 12:05 am

HAZELWOOD • In the haze of a summer heat wave, when little minds are often fixed on the jingle of an ice cream truck or
days at the pool, kindergarten can seem as alien as blending alphabet sounds together into words that go on paper.

But in an educational system where increasing pressure has been placed on that initial school grade to learn to read, write
full sentences, recognize lists of words at first sight and perform basic addition and subtraction, Hazelwood school officials
are serious about summer school for the youngest of pupils.

So serious that a group of 5-year-olds quietly gathered at 8:10 a.m. last week in the lobby of Garrett Elementary School
while many of their peers slept in or tuned out with early morning cartoons. They sat cross-legged in single file lines on the
linoleum floor until their teachers arrived and cheerfully asked each line to stand and walk single-file down the hallway —
faces up, posture straight — into their classrooms.

And they did: quietly and deliberately, without giggles, tickles, line ditching, pushing or silly sounds.

It was just another day at Sunny Start, one of a handful of summer school programs in the region designed to get children
ready for the routines and curriculum they will find in kindergarten this August.

"For parents now, they're starting to understand there's a different level of expectations of what kids need to start
kindergarten," said Trish Adkins, director of federal programs for the Hazelwood School District.

QUESTIONS AND BUDGET CUTS

The program, which enrolls 400 children, is just one of a few remaining in the region after years of budget cuts in other
districts as well as questions over the effectiveness of the approach.

Similar programs, typically half a day in duration, are still popular in St. Louis Public Schools and the Rockwood School
District. At Rockwood, for example, parents pay $85 for a weeklong program.

But Webster Groves decided that its own five-week "Jump Start" program had little bang for the buck and discontinued it.
Other districts have followed suit.

"We pretty much decided our kindergarten teachers do a really good job with acclimating the kids in the school year, and
we had kids coming in at all sorts of different levels," said John Simpson, an assistant superintendent for the Webster
Groves district.

Some in the child development field worry that the programs are indicative of a national push by too many school districts
to regiment young children into rigid, performance-based academic learning too early.

"I don't have a problem that children have a four-week introduction to going to school in the summer, but you don't want
them to burn out and get them turned-off to school," warned Joan Almon, director of programs for the Alliance for Children
at the University of Maryland.
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Administrators and teachers at Hazelwood said the month long program that ended last week gives children a chance to
test the waters of a more structured school environment so they have less anxiety and more academic and social
confidence in the coming school year.

Most of the classrooms are led by district kindergarten teachers, which, at bare minimum, gives the students the chance to
know familiar faces when the school year starts in August, said Shannon Drennan, the coordinator for Sunny Start at
Garrett Elementary.

For teachers, such programs get more children up to speed earlier on the basic routines and early reading and writing skills
needed for an intensive learning year ahead. That makes things easier from the start for teachers who must achieve a lot of
goals with their students in just nine months, Drennan said.

Mary Carver said her daughter, Annabell Wallsmith, loves Sunny Start.

"It gets my kid motivated to jump into kindergarten," she said. "She's learning the social skills, and it gets her more ready to
read."

TOO MUCH STRUCTURE?

But Almon worries that the motivation behind kindergarten summer school in some districts is to prepare students earlier
for mandatory assessment testing and to move them away from the free play and exploration that research suggests
enhances learning in young children.

"I just think that when we get caught in thinking the most regimented approach will be the best way, I haven't seen them
bring about a love of learning or a comfort with a group situation or an excitement about learning," she said.

In the most extreme example she's seen, Almon said, one North Carolina school district openly praised a teacher in their
kindergarten summer "boot camp" program who wore military fatigues as she shouted lessons in ABCs and 1-2-3s.

For the record, Mary Brownell, one of the teachers at Sunny Start in Hazelwood, was wearing a T-shirt and capri pants and
spoke calmly to her class, just above a whisper, and conducted most of circle time from a rocking chair.

Almon said the push she has seen toward rigid academics is particularly common in lower-income school districts where
the stakes for funding and accreditation are high. She cites one study that found kindergartners in New York and Los
Angeles public schools spent two to three hours a day in chairs working on literacy, math and testing and allowed about 20
minutes of play time.

At St. Louis Public Schools, Cheryl Davenport, the director of early childhood programs, said the district's free "Kindergarten
Here I Come!" program focuses heavily on play, though academic enrichment is a clear goal for their students.

The program, which has been running for more than a decade, enrolled about 400 children this summer. Although it's open
to all St. Louis children about to enter kindergarten, Davenport said the bulk of the program's students are recommended
by district preschool teachers who identify them as perhaps needing "a little bit of extra time and focus on basic skills such
as early reading and early writing."

But, she stressed, the program is geared toward fun. So math and lessons are typically given outside at the water table with
measuring cups. Prereading and science come through cooking and art projects.
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"Our program is meant to provide additional enrichment time," she said.
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6 ELECTRICITY-RELATED DEATHS IN MO. SINCE 2010
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Missouri utility regulators say there have been 30 electricity-related incidents in the state since
2010, resulting in a half-dozen deaths.

The Public Service Commission published recent electricity incidents involving regulated utilities after three people were
killed during the past week while swimming at the Lake of the Ozarks. State regulators require regulated power companies
to report electricity incidents.

Commission Chairman Kevin Gunn says it is important for people to understand the danger that electricity can pose.
Regulators say people should assume overhead power lines are energized at lethal voltages and they should be cautious
when using aluminum ladders and tall equipment around wires.

Boat docks and swimming pools should also be protected with a ground fault circuit interrupter, and professional
electricians should install electrical systems near docks.
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NEW MISSOURI LAW IMPROVES CHANCES OF AVOIDING RED
LIGHT TICKET
Allison Blood

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KMOX) - You might notice yellow lights getting a bit longer at intersections in your neighborhood,
and throughout Missouri.

Governor Jay Nixon has signed a law regulating the minimum length before yellow lights change over to red.

Sen. Jim Lembke sponsored the bill — he’s observed that many communities decide to shave some time off the yellow once
they install red light cameras.

“The concern that we had where they’re using photo enforcement is that in some of the municipalities they might be
shortening the times on the yellow lights in order to write more tickets,” Lembke told KMOX News.

He cites the case of Texas, where lengthening yellow light times by just one second cut the number of red light tickets
issued in half.
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FRANKLIN COUNTY DEFENSE ATTORNEYS DENY PLAINTIFF’S
CLAIMS IN ACLU LAWSUIT
By Evin Fritschle, Missourian Staff Writer | Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2012 9:30 pm

Calling claims brought by an anonymous plaintiff “moot,” attorneys for the Franklin County Commission last week filed a
response to a federal lawsuit asking the suit to be dismissed.

The lawsuit was filed last month by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of an anonymous female Franklin County
resident, identified only as Jane Doe, claiming Christian prayers led by county commissioners violated the U.S. and Missouri
constitutions, and the plaintiff’s rights.

The county’s answer denies most of the lawsuit’s claims, but does admit that Presiding Commissioner John Griesheimer,
who is being sued in both his official capacity as a commissioner as well as individually, offered prayers at some meetings
prior to March 21, when the county received a complaint from the ACLU.

Last month commissioners adopted a formal invocation policy which will allow for any member of the public to deliver
prayers at the start of commission meetings if they sign up about a month in advance.

While the lawsuit cites specific examples and dates upon which Griesheimer delivered Christian prayers, the defense stated
only that he “opened various meetings of the Franklin County Commission with prayer” prior to March 21.

Tony Rothert, ACLU of Eastern Missouri legal director and attorney for the plaintiff, told The Missourian previously that he
had obtained audio recordings of the prayers, but did not say how the recordings were made available.

The county does not record audio or video of commission meetings nor does it take verbatim minutes.

One of the major claims of the lawsuit is that Griesheimer’s prayers violated the Establishment Clause of the U.S.
Constitution because “they prefer one religion over others,” “they have no secular purpose” and “they have the effect of
affiliating Franklin County with one specific faith or belief.”

The county’s answer denies almost all of the plaintiff’s claims, but offers little explanation.

The county also denied claims that the prayers violate the Missouri Constitution, which prohibits giving preference to a
church, sect or creed of religion and compelling residents to support a system of worship.

Attorneys for Franklin County are claiming that the plaintiff’s complaints are barred by a variety of legal immunities as well
as the 11th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which grants sovereign immunity to states and therefore makes them
immune to being sued in federal court.

The county is being represented by attorneys from the Alliance Defense Fund, a conservative group with ties to a number
of Christian organizations.
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HIGHEST PERCENTAGE OF MISSOURI'S UNINSURED RESIDE IN RURAL
COUNTIES
By Robert Joiner, Beacon staff

8:04 am on Wed, 07.11.12

Most Missouri counties with the highest percentage of uninsured residents are concentrated in two congressional districts -
- the 6th in the northern part of the state and the 8th in southeast Missouri, according to data in a new report.

The study does not break down the number of uninsured Missourians by congressional districts. But that is one way to look
at the issue as federal lawmakers decide whether to try to reverse all or parts of the health reform law that will give most
people access to health insurance by 2014.

The report comes from Cover Missouri, a joint project of the Missouri Foundation for Health and the Health Care
Foundation of Greater Kansas City. It offers these estimates of how the Affordable Care Act could drastically change access
to health insurance across the state:

• As a result of ACA, 509,529 Missouri residents under age 65, or 10 percent of the population, are expected to become
newly insured. That's roughly two-thirds of Missouri's uninsured population of more than 800,000.

• The highest percentage of the state's newly insured are likely to live in Knox, Hickory, Ozark, Morgan, Carter, Taney,
Worth, Scott and McDonald counties. These also happen to be rural counties where the uninsured rates range from 21
percent to 22.6 percent, the highest in the state.

• The largest number of newly insured residents -- roughly 70,000 -- is likely to live in Jackson County, which includes
Kansas City. The second largest number, about 60,000, is likely to live in St. Louis County, while the third highest number,
40,000, is expected to live in St. Louis.

While the largest number of residents getting help from ACA lives in urban communities, the largest percentage benefitting
from the law live in rural Missouri, says Ryan Barker, director of health policy at MFH.

In spite of reducing the state's uninsured population, the reform legislation would still mean 255,246, or 5.1 percent of
Missourians, are likely to remain without health insurance, he said.

"Some will be legal immigrants who are ineligible for Medicaid for the first five years, and some will be undocumented
immigrants," Ryan says of those left out of the law. "Some will be people who get exemptions."

These include people claiming religious exemptions from the law or claiming financial hardship, Barker said.

He says some of those left out would have some access to health care because funds will go toward uncompensated care
provided by hospitals. And, he adds, "the law forbidding hospitals to turn away sick people still stands."

The study assumes that Missouri will move forward on two contentious issues -- expanding Medicaid and setting up an
insurance exchange to cover the report's projected 509,529 Missouri residents eligible for insurance under ACA.

Many state lawmakers have been lukewarm to hostile to both issues.
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Barker says MFH hopes the data will help policymakers understand which people do and don't have access to health
insurance. He says that's one reason the study didn't just look at the issue at the state level but focused on how the
numbers would differ from county to county under health reform law.
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MO. DEMOCRAT MAKES HEADLINES QUESTIONING 9/11
BY ELIZABETH CRISP • ecrisp@post-dispatch.com> 573-635-6178 | Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2012 2:02 pm

JEFFERSON CITY • A Democrat running for secretary of state in Missouri has made headlines for his comments in support of
9/11 conspiracy theories.

MD Rabbi Alam of Kansas City has apologized for the remarks he made in an interview Monday with the conservative-
leaning Washington Free Beacon, including claims that no Jewish people died in the 2001 terrorist attacks.

“My question was, ‘What’s the reason not a single Jew was killed on that day,’” Alam told the Free Beacon. “Was there a
single Jew killed on that day?”

The news site said Alam, a Muslim who was born in Bangladesh, maintained that his position was based on facts, rather
than a bias against Jewish people.

He also questioned whether commercial airliners were the sole cause of the Twin Towers' collapse.

“I have 100 percent doubts. It doesn’t add up,” Alam is quoted as saying. “My bottom line is the plane is not solely
responsible for destroying the whole building.”

Rabbi Yair Hoffman, reporting for Orthodox Jewish news site Vos Iz Neias?, later contacted Alam with information to show
him that Jewish people died in the terrorist attacks. It has been estimated that between 270 and 400 of the victims were
Jewish.

“I personally know people that died – I know their father, I know their brother, I know their children,” Hoffman said in a call
that was recorded.

Alam apologized and blamed his misinformation on “Loose Change” a series of videos that went viral, arguing against the
official account of 9/11 and claiming that it was a planned attack orchestrated by the U.S. government.

According to the VIN article, Alam “still expressed some conspiracy thinking about the World Trade Center bombings” later
in the conversation after apologizing for his remarks about Jewish people.

Alam notes on his campaign website that he is the chairman of the National Democratic Party Asian American Caucus, as
well as the chairman of the Missouri Democratic Party Asian American Caucus.

Despite the official-sounding names, both of those groups were created by Alam in 2007. They have no official ties with the
national party or state party, and party leaders at both levels were quick to distance themselves from Alam on Tuesday.

"There is absolutely no place in the public discourse or in the Democratic Party for Mr. Alam's hateful, insensitive and
bigoted remarks," Missouri Democratic Party Chairman Mike Sanders said in a statement.

Some sites have linked to photos of Alam with Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and Vice
President Joe Biden as potential evidence of his closeness to party leaders, but it is not clear where the photos were taken.

The Washington Free Beacon's claim also that Alam's "pro-Obama politicking apparently earned him an invite to the White
House in December 2011," neglects to note that Alam's visit was a group tour with 268 other people.
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JOHN BRUNNER RETURNS TO CAMPAIGN IN KIRKSVILLE
by Vanessa Alonso, KTVO/Kirksville

KIRKSVILLE, MO -- A candidate makes his second stop in Kirksville for his senatorial campaign.

U.S. Senate Republican Candidate John Brunner made several stops in Downtown Kirksville.

KTVO caught up with him as he attended the K-REDI meeting Tuesday and spoke with the committee members afterwards.
He also went around visiting several local businesses around the square and held a meet and greet at Pagliai's Pizza.

Brunner said he is more determined than ever to win, so he can go to Washington to get the job done.

He said his campaign focus will be the economy and putting Americans back to work.

"We are continuing to spend deeper into debt. Small businesses are hurting. We have to stop spending. We have to go out
and grow businesses," Brunner said. "We have to get good energy. We have to pull back regulations. We need to have
fairer taxes. We have a lot of issues that need to be controlled as well."

Brunner also wants President Obama's Healthcare Reform Act to get repealed.

"Just two years ago 71 percent of the people in Missouri did not want ‘Obamacare.’ They wanted it repealed; now 81
percent don't want it. They understand that this is going to crush businesses. We are barely hanging on. We have to repeal
it completely. We need a bottom up approach where there's a freedom of choice and get the doctors involved. We can
restore healthcare," Brunner said.

The primary elections are on August 7. The winner of the primary will go up against incumbent Senator Claire McCaskill in
the November elections.
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BLUNT, MCCASKILL URGE FEDERAL ASSISTANCE FOR FARMERS
STRUGGLING IN MISSOURI DROUGHT
Missouri News Horizon

— Both of Missouri’s U.S. Senators are joining Gov. Jay Nixon in his call for a federal disaster declaration in response to
Missouri’s continued drought conditions.

In a letter to Agriculture Secretary Thomas Vilsack on Wednesday, Sen.’s Claire McCaskill and Roy Blunt urged the
Department to move forward with Nixon’s request for a primary disaster declaration for all 114 Missouri counties.

“A disaster designation would give eligible producers in Missouri the additional support they need by allowing them to
qualify for [Farm Service Agency] emergency loans, emergency grazing and haying, and other financial assistance,” the two
wrote.

Already, the Department of Agriculture has moved to help farmers get help from the agency. Speaking with reporters on
Wednesday, Vilsack said his agency is dropping the loan rate on emergency loans to farmers.

“We need to be cognizant of the fact that drought and adverse weather conditions have severely affected and impacted
producers across the country,” he said.

As the temperatures continue to sear the state, farmers continue to struggle. Bill Wiebold, a specialist from the University
of Missouri, said many corn crops are going to be a total loss.

“Some of those fields, that yield is down to zero,” said Wiebold. “My heart goes out to those farmers. It is a tragedy.”

Wiebold said soybean farmers may be in a better spot because the beans have a better shot at surviving with less water
and higher temperatures.
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US HOUSE PANEL ADVANCES BURN PIT LEGISLATION
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- A congressional committee has advanced a bill by Rep. Todd Akin, of Missouri, that would
create a government registry for veterans who may have been exposed to toxic smoke while in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The measure was rolled into a larger veterans' bill that was approved Wednesday by the House Committee on Veterans'
Affairs.

Some veterans believe they suffer from health problems as a result of smoke and fumes they inhaled while burning tons of
trash and human waste in Iraq and Afghanistan. Akin's legislation would direct the Department of Veterans Affairs to create
a registry to collect information on the number of veterans exposed to the burn pits and the types of health problems they
later reported.
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LAWMAKERS TAKE AIM AT ATM SCAMS
Say requirement for 2 notices on fees spurs ‘mayhem’

Washington Times

Capitol Hill lawmakers are moving ahead with legislation that would prevent what critics say are frivolous lawsuits against
banks, credit unions and stores that operate ATMs by exploiting a loophole in federal disclosure laws.

The House this week unanimously passed an amendment to the 1999 Electronic Fund Transfer Act to address the quirk in
the law, and the Senate is expected to act on the proposal this week.

The law now requires ATM operators to post two notices about the fees customers will be charged for withdrawing cash.
One notice is a digital message displayed on the screen before the transaction is made. The second notice is an actual sign,
known as a placard, that is attached to the outside of the machine or nearby.

Lawmakers say the double warning is worse than redundant: Some customers are covertly removing the signs, then suing
because the bank is "in violation" of the disclosure law. The growing scam has forced lawmakers to take another look at the
law.

Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, Missouri Republican, sponsored the House bill after learning that banks in his own community
were being cheated.

He called the scam "nonsense," saying litigants are "taking advantage" of banks and causing "financial mayhem."

"There's no reason for a second disclosure when you already have it on the screen," he said. "The absurdity of having to tell
people twice is what we're trying to get rid of here."

This scam could force ATM operators to charge higher fees or removing the cash machines altogether to minimize more
losses from fraud, said House Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus, Alabama Republican.

But cutting back on disclosure is not the answer, said Linda Sherry, spokeswoman for Consumer Action, which along with
Consumers Union and U.S. PIRG sent letters to Congress opposing the change.

"Certainly, we don't need to do away with consumer disclosure," she said. "We need to improve consumer disclosure."

Ms. Sherry said current disclosure rules are insufficient, noting that consumers are only told of the fee the ATM operator is
charging them, but not the "foreign bank fee," which their own bank might also charge.

She said her group would favor the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau coming up with a rule to address the double-
disclosure requirement, rather than legislation.

"There have been some lawsuits that are not as advisable as we would have hoped," she said. "That's unfortunate. It's
disheartening."
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SENS. MCCASKILL, PORTMAN JOIN ON TARIFF PROPOSAL
By DAVID A. LIEB
Associated Press

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Democratic U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, who faces a tough re-election bid in Missouri, teamed up
Wednesday with Ohio Sen. Rob Portman - an oft-mentioned potential Republican vice presidential candidate - to push for a
new way of relaxing tariffs on some materials imported by U.S. manufacturers.

The senators said they hoped their proposal could be debated in the coming days as an amendment to a business bill
pending in the Senate. McCaskill also has filed the tariff measure as a stand-alone bill with 20 Republican co-sponsors,
including Portman and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, of Kentucky.

McCaskill and Portman said the measure is intended to quash what they described an earmark-like process in which U.S.
businesses needing materials that are not made domestically must persuade a lawmaker to file a bill to temporarily reduce
or suspend the tariff on the imported item. Ultimately, the various special requests are rolled into what is dubbed as a
miscellaneous tariff bill.

Instead, McCaskill and Portman want businesses or lawmakers to be able to file such tariff requests with the U.S.
International Trade Commission, which would evaluate them and submit a draft bill for Congress to consider. They said
some senators may block a vote on this year's miscellaneous tariff bill as leverage to consider the proposed changes to the
tariff process for future years.

"This is about some senators getting together on a bipartisan basis and doing something that is very essential to success in
the Senate, and that is compromise," said McCaskill, who has made her desire for bipartisan compromise a central theme
of her re-election campaign against a Republican primary field that has pledged to stand firm for conservative principles.

"We will fix this problem going forward, so it is no longer an earmark, but you've got to deal with us on reform in order for
us to stand aside and let the other bill move," she added.

Portman said it's important for tariffs to be relaxed on certain materials, such as chemicals used in manufacturing, in order
for U.S. businesses to be able to create jobs. The proposed change in the means of doing so "cleans up what is now a
lobbyist-driven process," he said. Instead, the proposal "creates a transparent, merit-driven process."
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'ODD COUPLE' MCCASKILL AND PORTMAN COLLABORATE ON
TARIFF, CONTRACT ISSUES
By Robert Koenig, Beacon Washington correspondent

4:59 pm on Wed, 07.11.12

WASHINGTON – One is a first-term Missouri Democrat under constant fire from GOP critics taking aim at her Senate seat.
The other is an Ohio Republican who is considered a potential running mate for presumed GOP presidential nominee Mitt
Romney.

Despite their political differences, U.S. Sens. Claire McCaskill and Rob Portman – the chairperson and ranking Republican on
the Senate Subcommittee on Contracting Oversight – have cooperated on some issues, including an inquiry into
government PR contracts and a tariff-related measure that they hope to offer in the Senate this week.

On Wednesday, the two senators said they are seeking a Senate vote on their amendment that would respect the current
ban on “earmarks” – a ban that McCaskill had helped engineer – by changing the way in which U.S. companies get tariff
suspensions on imported products (such as certain chemicals) that aren’t made or available in this country. Instead of
having to convince a member of Congress to sponsor the duty suspensions, firms could go directly through the
International Trade Commission.

“It’s just a matter of saying that companies are not required to hire a lobbyist, and spend more money than they need to,
to get tariff relief in order to manufacture products in America,” McCaskill told reporters.

In the conference call, Portman said the amendment – also introduced as a stand-alone bill – “cleans up what is now a
lobbyist-driven process. We’re putting forth a process that gives businesses more certainty and less reliance on the political
process. It creates a transparent, merit-based process” with the ITC doing the screening of data on the tariff reduction
requests.

McCaskill said backers of their amendment have some leverage because, without the change she and Portman advocate,
this year’s major “miscellaneous tariff” bill – which compiles hundreds of duty-suspension requests from members of
Congress – could be held up by objections that it violates the temporary ban on earmarks.

“The leverage we have is: ‘Hey, if you want to get this year’s 'miscellaneous tariffs' through, you need to work with us on
reform,’” McCaskill said. Portman told reporters that his Missouri colleague was “absolutely right” in her assessment of the
legislative leverage. He added: “Getting the amendment to the [Senate] floor would be a great opportunity for us to inform
more of our colleagues about what the real issues are here.”

The duty-suspension process has relevance to Missouri and Illinois, where many companies – from chemical firms to
footwear producers or marketers – rely on imported raw materials. According to a list of tariff requests compiled by the
House Ways and Means Committee, five Missouri lawmakers – including U.S. Reps. William Lacy Clay and Russ Carnahan,
both D-St. Louis – have filed a total of at least 87 such requests in this session of Congress alone.

McCaskill and Portman said that, if they are unable to add their bipartisan amendment to the small business bill that the
Senate is debating this week, they will try later this summer or fall to append it to another legislative vehicle.
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The tariff issue is the most recent of several initiatives on which McCaskill and Portman have collaborated, mostly since
Portman – a former director of the Office of Management and Budget during the administration of then-President George
W. Bush – became the subcommittee’s top Republican member early last year.

On April 17, Portman said a McCaskill-chaired hearing on failures in wartime contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan was
“incredibly important” because it is vital for Congress “to examine the lessons we have learned about wartime contracting
from our experience over the last decade” in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In February, Portman and McCaskill announced that – as a followup to a March 2011 subcommittee hearing into a sole-
source $234,000 public affairs contract by the federal General Services Administration to a Kansas City PR firm – they had
launched a much wider inquiry into the federal government’s spending on outside PR contracts.

The two senators sent letters to all 11 federal agencies asking for a full accounting of “contracts for the acquisition of public
relations, publicity, advertising, communications or similar services,” starting in October 2008. The subcommittee staff is
analyzing the responses.

Portman aides have sought to put a political cast on the inquiry – with one saying it would probe the current
administration’s “use of taxpayer-funded spin” on issues such as the impact of the Affordable Care Act. But McCaskill’s
staffers say the inquiry will be an even-handed look at whether such PR contracts are abused.

“It’s an ongoing investigation,” a McCaskill spokesman said Wednesday.
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REPUBLICAN LAWMAKERS AGAIN VOTE TO REPEAL HEALTH-CARE
LAW
By Ken Newton | St. Joseph News-Press

Political theater, some insisted. The will of the people, others countered.

One certainty: Efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act don’t lack in volume.

The U.S. House voted Wednesday afternoon to repeal the nation’s health-care reform legislation, passing the measure by a
mostly party-line vote of 244 to 185. By some accountings, it is the 33rd time since January 2011 that representatives have
voted to dial back all or parts of the landmark bill.

The vote proceeded despite the emptiness of the action. The Republican-backed repeal stands little chance of making it
through the Democratic-controlled Senate. Even if it did, the certainty of a presidential veto would squash the effort.

Northwest Missouri Congressman Sam Graves, who contributed to the “yeas,” said the renewed effort at repeal, the first
such vote since the Supreme Court decision on the law, has a purpose.

“In the midst of a sluggish economy and unemployment crisis, House Republicans are focused on jobs,” said the GOP
lawmaker from Tarkio. “That is why we’re exhausting all measures possible to remove this law, because it is a barrier to job
growth, plain and simple.”

Mr. Graves, chairman of the House Small Business Committee, cited a Government Accountability Office report as showing
the ineffectiveness of the health-care measure. The report indicated that 170,300 small businesses had used a heavily
promoted tax credit in the legislation that sponsors thought would be used by 4 million.

“Small businesses know that a complex, temporary Band-Aid credit is not an adequate solution to compliance with the
health-care law’s taxes and mandates,” Mr. Graves said in a statement on Wednesday.

Missouri Sen. Roy Blunt, though not facing a Wednesday vote, said in a conference call with reporters that he would
continue efforts in that chamber to get the law repealed. He noted that several governors said they would not add new
individuals to the Medicaid rolls, a requirement removed by the Supreme Court ruling.

“When you look at Medicaid spending in all of the states, you can understand why governors would be reluctant to further
cut higher education, elementary and secondary education ... because of an overreach in Medicaid,” he said.

Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, in a separate conference call, ran through a roster of the law’s provisions already in effect
and helping her Missouri constituents. She said repeal efforts represented more congressional partisanship.

“Frankly, this is all just a political two-by-four that they’re busy engaging in, and, frankly, I think in many ways, they are
going to shortchange Missourians,” she said.

In the vote breakdown, all 239 Republicans who voted went for the repeal, as did five Democrats. The 185 “nay” votes all
came from Democrats.
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The House Democratic whip, Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland, pointed during debate to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll that
indicated 56 percent of Americans believe opponents of the health-care law should stop trying to block its implementation.

“It’s time for Republicans to end their relentless obsession with taking away health-care benefits from millions of
Americans,” the Democratic lawmaker said.
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EPA GRANT SUPPORTS JOB TRAINING AT ST. LOUIS COMMUNITY
COLLEGE
STAFF REPORTS | Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2012 2:30 pm

The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded $181,638 to St. Louis Community College for drinking water job
training.

According to a news release from the EPA, the training meets requirements set by the Missouri Department of Natural
Resources for drinking water treatment certification. The core curriculum focuses on the skills necessary for entry-level jobs
at drinking water facilities. It includes sessions on water quality monitoring, green infrastructure, operations, maintenance,
mathematics, and drinking water regulations.

EPA oversees the protection of water quality and public health. The responsibility for ensuring safe drinking water is shared
by EPA, states, tribes, water systems, and the public.
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GOP 'WAR' ON EPA FOCUSES ON COST OF REGULATIONS
By Robert Koenig, Beacon Washington correspondent

8:00 am on Wed, 07.11.12

WASHINGTON – In 1970, the Environmental Protection Agency opened its doors with an aggressive new chief, later dubbed
“Mr. Clean,” and an independent charter to promote clean air and water across the country.

The EPA was established by a Republican president, Richard Nixon. Its first administrator, William Ruckelshaus, was a
Republican. And the agency was created in response to bipartisan concern about widespread pollution.

But in recent years, that one-time GOP war against pollution has gradually morphed into what critics describe as a
Republican war against the EPA itself. U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., recently called EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson “the worst”
leader in the agency’s history, and scores of Capitol Hill conservatives want to downgrade or even dissolve the EPA.

“I think she has a callous disregard for how [EPA] rules impact families and jobs and the economy,” charges Blunt, who
contends that the agency’s regulations will cost utilities, farms and industries billions of dollars. “But it’s not just all about
her. Some of it’s about that fact that she’s been asked to pursue really bad policies” by the White House.

Defenders of the EPA under Jackson say she is simply trying to implement laws approved by Congress and signed by
presidents. “The EPA under Lisa Jackson has done its job of enforcing the laws Congress passed -- much to the dismay of
many Republicans,” says Kathleen Logan Smith, executive director of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment. “From my
point of view, keep it up.”

But the GOP-controlled U.S. House – in particular, the Energy and Commerce Committee – has taken aim at EPA
regulations. In the first year after Republicans gained a House majority in 2010, about 160 votes were held against various
environmental protections, including more than 80 votes on amendments or bills targeting the EPA.

U.S. Rep. John Shimkus, R-Collinsville, who chairs the panel’s environment and the economy subcommittee, has targeted
EPA regulations and its cost-benefit calculations.

“It’s not a debate about which side wants to pollute our constituents and which side does not. That’s ridiculous," Shimkus
said in an interview Tuesday. "Our side asks: What’s the balance between people having jobs and economic growth and
having clean air and water? Of course you can have both.”

Questions that Shimkus and other GOP lawmakers have fired at the EPA include: Are coal-fired power plants over-
regulated? Are environmental rules stifling industries and slowing down the economy? Should manure be listed as
hazardous waste? Is farm dust hazardous to health?

“Republicans have made an assault on all environmental issues,” charges the committee’s top Democrat and former chair,
Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif. In a speech last spring, he said that “this is, without doubt, the most anti-environmental
Congress in history.”

As for the EPA’s Jackson, who faced aggressive questioning at a series of House committee hearings, she warned in an op-
ed last fall that the House GOP was engaging in “an assault in our environmental and health protections.”
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Jackson wrote: “Using the economy as cover, and repeating unfounded claims that ‘regulations kill jobs,’ they have pushed
through an unprecedented rollback of the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and our nation's waste-disposal laws, all of
which have successfully protected our families for decades.”

At a conference a few years ago, Ruckelshaus said the agency had been banged up by the constant back and forth in
political debates about the economy and environmental polity over the last two decades.

“The EPA suffers from battered agency syndrome,” he said. “Why is EPA now the agency everyone loves to hate?”

Support, criticism for EPA wax and wane

In a sense, the modern environmental movement began with “Silent Spring,” a landmark 1962 book by Rachel Carson
about pesticide contamination in streams. But the movement was not codified until Nixon and Congress established the
EPA.

Within days after the agency’s launch in December 1970, Ruckelshaus announced that the agency had “no obligation to
promote commerce or agriculture” -– positioning the EPA as an environmental advocate rather than a mediator. Even
though Nixon was at time lukewarm, 16 major environmental laws – addressing water, air, solid waste and endangered
species – were enacted during his administration.

But the bipartisan consensus on such issues began to erode during the early 1980s, when President Ronald Reagan named
conservative attorney Anne M. Gorsuch to head the EPA at a time when industry was complaining about over-regulation.
She cut the EPA budget, reduced staff and slowed down the number of cases filed against polluters.

But a congressional outcry over Gorsuch’s handling of the Superfund toxic-waste cleanup program – holding her in
contempt of Congress in December 1982 – eventually led to her resignation in March 1983, when Reagan brought back
Ruckelshaus to stabilize the EPA for the next two years.

“It's cyclical. The more active EPA is, the more controversy,” Ruckelshaus wrote later. The next major backlash against the
EPA came from the right, when the GOP gained control of the House in 1994 and Speaker Newt Gingrich helped lead
another effort to roll back some regulations. As Ruckelshaus explained in his essay:

“The anti-environmental push of the '90s is prompted by the pro-environmental excess of the late '80s, which was
prompted by the anti-environmental excess of the early '80s, which was prompted by the pro-environmental excess of the
'70s.”

Under that pendulum theory, the GOP assault on environmental regulations in the last couple of years represents the latest
swing to the right, which could go further if Republicans take control of the Senate and White House in the November
elections.

In an interview, Blunt, the fifth-ranking Senate Republican, said his criticism was not so much aimed at Jackson personally
as at the Obama administration’s aggressive promulgation of new environmental regulations at a time of economic
hardship. He accused the EPA and the White House of a “lack of concern about the impact on families and the economy of
the regulations they put out, one after another.”
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That includes a “war on coal,” Blunt contended, that hurts Missouri. “Instead of trying to work to make ‘clean coal’ a more
useable fuel, they clearly are working to make it difficult for states like Missouri that benefit from good utility rates based
on coal – by putting those out of business.”

Shimkus, whose southern Illinois district includes coal mines, accuses the EPA of "moving ahead on a plan to make coal un-
economic through increased regulations and to drive coal out of the electricity-generation portfolio.” He says the new
Prairie State coal-fired power plant near Marissa, Ill., expends two-thirds of its resources in meeting environmental
regulations and only a third in generating electricity for its customers.

While half of Illinois' electricity is generated by nuclear power, Shimkus said "Missouri is going to get clobbered" by new
EPA power-plant regulations because about 80 percent of its power is generated at coal-fired plants. He pointed to this
week's Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing of St. Louis-based Patriot Coal Corp. as "a warning signal" about the nation's coal
industry. But the coal industry's problems relate more to the decreasing cost of natural gas, most experts say, than to
regulation.

Blunt and Shimkus also fault the EPA for trying to make life difficult for farmers, with Blunt accusing the agency of “pursuing
longer than they should have the rule about fugitive dust on farms [and] spending a whole lot of money . . . looking into
whether milk spilt on a farm should come under the ‘hazardous waste’ requirements.”

But the agency says it opted not to pursue the farm-dust and spilt-milk regulations. And the EPA takes issue with a bill
sponsored by U.S. Rep. Billy Long, R-Springfield, called the Superfund Common Sense Act, that Long says would “stop the
EPA from classifying livestock waste as a hazardous substance.” In other words, a manure regulation.

At a hearing in Shimkus’ subcommittee on June 27, Long said the EPA “continues to illustrate its lack of common sense as it
hurries to enact more overzealous regulation that ends up crippling job creators in southwest Missouri and across our
country.”

But Mathy Stanislaus, who heads the EPA’s Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, told the panel that the agency
“has never designated manure as a hazardous substance nor . . . ever designated a farm a Superfund site and has no plans
to do so.”

Explaining that the rule was aimed mainly at giant feedlots whose waste emits ammonia and other potentially hazardous
substances, Stanislaus said the rule exempts farms as long as they are not “large concentrated animal feeding operations.”
He said Long’s bill could lead to “a substantial danger to the public health and the environment” by preventing the EPA
from acting against large manure-waste lagoons.

A prominent Senate supporter of the EPA, Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works
committee, assails such House efforts to roll back environmental regulations. Arguing that it is “a myth that a clean
environment is antithetical to a strong economy,” Boxer said in October that the GOP was engaged in “unprecedented,
outrageous attacks on the EPA and our landmark environmental laws.”

Taking a more moderate stand, Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., opposed “cap and trade” legislation, spoke out against tighter
regulation of “farm dust,” tried to add an amendment to the Senate farm bill to give a greater voice to an agriculture
representative in EPA rulemaking, and in recent months has sought delays on tighter regulations on boilers and utilities.
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“The EPA needs to make sure that when decisions are being made, the folks on the ground who will be affected by those
decisions are at the table,” McCaskill said in a statement to the Beacon.

“Everybody, especially the EPA, needs to be using common sense to protect the health of Missourians, and I believe we can
achieve that without burdening our local communities and farmers and ranchers with unreasonable rules.”

Shimkus is not among the conservatives who want to do away with the EPA, but he wants more scrutiny of its proposals.
“The Clean Air Act and the Safe Drinking Water Act have been very helpful," the Illinois lawmaker said. "But we are now at a
point now when we ask: Can we get to 'perfection'? At what cost? And who is defining perfection?”

Mercury rules among the most costly and controversial

Among the most controversial EPA regulation issues – in terms of its potential impact on health as well as its likely cost to
utilities and the economy – are the agency's landmark federal standards to limit power plant emissions of mercury and
other toxic pollutants.

In announcing the new mercury and air toxics standards in December, Jackson said they aim to “protect millions of families
and children from harmful and costly air pollution and provide the American people with health benefits that far outweigh
the costs.”

But even the EPA estimates that the costs of retrofitting more than 600 aging power plants – including several in Missouri –
would be substantial, an estimated $9.6 billion a year when the standards go into effect. Normally, power plants would be
required to comply with the standards within three years, but the new rule would allow states such as Missouri to request
extensions of up to two more years.

While Illinois is among the states with mercury-emission standards already in place, Missouri’s many coal-fired plants are
not subject to state-defined limits on mercury emissions. The Clean Air Act of 1990 allowed the EPA to regulate such
emissions, but lawsuits and other delays have allowed many power plants to keep operating.

The cost of compliance in Missouri with the utility MACT rules are likely to exceed $200 million over three to five years, an
Ameren Missouri official said in December. That’s because the regulation will require tighter controls for mercury,
particulates and acid gases at every power plant in the state.

But the EPA and environmentalists argued that the health benefits outweigh the costs. Mercury pollutants are considered
among the most serious risks to health, as the chemical tends to gather in watersheds after being emitted from power
plants. The EPA estimates that the new safeguards will prevent as many as 11,000 premature deaths and 4,700 heart
attacks a year. Particulate standards are estimated to help prevent about 130,000 cases of childhood asthma symptoms
and about 6,300 fewer cases of acute bronchitis.

A report by Environment Missouri said the state ranked 11th-highest in total mercury emissions from coal-fired power
plants in 2009, while Illinois ranked seventh. That year, Ameren's Labadie plant in Franklin County ranked as the 15th-
highest mercury emitter among the 450 coal-fired plants across the country; another report last month from the
Environmental Integrity Project listed the Labadie plant among the nation’s worst in terms of the potential impact of its
emissions on health.
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John Hickey, who heads the St. Louis chapter of the Missouri chapter of the Sierra Club, applauded the EPA for the new
mercury-pollution standard, arguing that it will improve health in Missouri because “many waterways in the metro area”
are on a list with higher than acceptable mercury pollution. He also credits the EPA for instituting new air pollution
safeguards against sulfur dioxide and says “the new rules on carbon dioxide pollution are a real game-changer.”

In general, Hickey said “the EPA has taken great strides under Lisa Jackson, and has achieved a variety of major
achievements that are relevant to the St. Louis area.” Those include the recent agreement with the Metropolitan Sewer
District on sewer overflows; the settlement with Doe Run to clean up the Herculaneum smelter and other lead sites; and
the EPA lawsuit seeking to require Ameren Missouri to install better pollution controls at its Rush Island power plant.

In June, Senate Democrats – including McCaskill and Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill. – turned back an effort by Blunt and other GOP
senators to block the utility MACT regulations. Blunt said that would save consumers billions of dollars in higher utility bills,
but Boxer argued that it “would have allowed polluters to release more toxic, poisonous emissions into our air, leading to
premature deaths, heart attacks and asthma.”

A couple of weeks later, McCaskill – who has been under political pressure in Missouri to oppose strict regulation –
announced that she had joined a bipartisan group of senators in signing a letter to Obama urging a two-year delay in
implementing the utility MACT regulations to give power companies more time to retrofit.

The senators wrote that the added delay – in some cases, allowing for six years for full compliance – “will allow more time
to order and install equipment, to give the required public notice and to apply for necessary permits. It will minimize the
possibility of disruptions in reliable electric service.”

Warring studies on impact of EPA

As in many policy disputes, experts on both sides of the issues are able to generate studies that support their point of view
– and the environment is no exception.

Republicans tend to base their criticism of the EPA on complaints from industries, utilities, farmers and ranchers that the
tightening of red-tape environmental regulations is driving up their costs and slowing economic growth.

“I’ve questioned Lisa Jackson on cost-benefit analysis. And when you look at their [EPA] cost-benefit analysis, it never really
adds up in any reasonable way,” said Blunt.

“The proposed boiler MACT rule for industrial sites – that’s a $20 billion cost. On utility MACT, [the EPA’s] own view of the
impact is $9.6 billion – all of which would be passed along in higher electricity costs,” said Blunt.

Adding potential costs from a new cooling-tower intake rule ($3 million) and a cross-state air pollution rule ($2.4 billion),
Blunt contends the total is about “$12 billion that will be passed along to utility customers” over a decade, most of which
would be passed along to consumers.

But environmental groups counter that the benefits of the new rules – mainly in terms of health – far outweigh the costs.
At a news conference last fall, Boxer released a report by her committee’s Democratic staff that used Commerce
Department to estimate that $300 billion in revenues and 1.7 million jobs had been generated since the EPA’s creation by
industries that are involved in environmental protection. The report also estimated the health benefits of clean-air
protections would amount to $2 trillion by 2012.
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The EPA “and the nation's landmark environmental safeguards were created with overwhelming bipartisan consensus in
Congress and support from Republican and Democratic presidents,” the report contends. “Forty years of achievements are
now threatened by partisan attacks.”

Yet critics say the costs of tightening regulations are too high. Margo Thorning, chief economist at the nonprofit American
Council for Capital Formation, took issue with an EPA report on the costs and benefits of the Clean Air Act from 1990 to
2020, which estimated that the improvements in air quality would “reach almost $2 trillion for the year, a value which
vastly exceeds the cost of efforts to comply” with the law.

In an op-ed, Thorning contended that “the much-touted $2 trillion claim is based on survey data that asks individuals what
they would be “willing to pay” . . . for a small increase in life expectancy and the wage differential between occupations of
different riskiness.” She said such surveys “have no link to overall economic activity and do not address how” they address
the main elements of the economy.

Thorning argued that “new, tighter emission standards should not be imposed without careful review of their costs relative
to their benefits.” Shimkus agrees, saying that America now has “the cleanest air and water since the industrial revolution.
Everyone accepts the premise that federal government has a role in ensuring that we breathe clean air and drink clean
water. The question we’re grappling with is: How clean in clean? And what is the cost of compliance?”

Jackson, arguing that the EPA already assesses costs and benefits, warned that further delays in such regulations would
“give big polluters a pass in complying with the standards that more than half of the power plants across the country
already meet.” She added:

“How we respond to this assault on our environmental and public health protections will mean the difference between
sickness and health — in some cases, life and death — for hundreds of thousands of citizens.”
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MISSOURINET
GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES ACTIONS ON CONSCIENCE RIGHTS,
OUTSTATE VEHICLE PURCHASE TAX BILLS AND MORE
July 12, 2012 By Mike Lear

Governor Jay Nixon has announced today his actions on several bills passed by the legislature this year.

Among those he has vetoed is the conscience rights of medical workers legislation, SB 749, that allows medical workers to
abstain from participating in procedures for which they have a religious, moral or ethical objection to. Governor Nixon says
these protections already exist in state law and says the bill he vetoed would actually undermine that law by letting
insurance companies deny coverage for contraception even if that decision disagrees with the position of an employee or
employer.

The Governor has also vetoed HB 1329, allowing local sales tax to be collected on vehicle, boat and related purchases made
out-of-state. He says it would violate the Constitution by raising taxes without a vote of the people.

Governor Nixon signed HB 1563 establishing a provisional licensing procedure for behavior analysts and assistant behavior
analysts to treat children with autism. He says that will help reach more children with “life-changing therapy.”

Governor Nixon also signed the following bills into law today: SB 470 concerning transportation, SB 568 concerning
transportation, SB 636 concerning the judiciary, SB 719 concerning public safety, HB 1036 concerning ballot emblems, HB
1103 concerning real estate, HB 1105 concerning the state militia, HB 1308 concerning pledged securities, HB 1460
concerning the Court Automation Fund, HB 1495 concerning the reporting of insurance fraud and HB 1909 concerning
aviation.

Other bills the Governor vetoed today (links go to his veto messages) are: SB 566 concerning vaccination of pets, SB 569
concerning elections, SB 607 concerning outdoor advertising, SB 635 concerning banking, SB 715 concerning the state
militia, SB 749 concerning health care, SB 837 concerning franchise alcohol suppliers, HB 1250 concerning elections, HB
1329 concerning motor vehicles and HB 1758 concerning parental relationships.
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MODOT DEALS WITH 40% FUNDING CUT
July 12, 2012 By Bob Priddy

A year after the state transportation commission adopted what it called a “Bolder Five-Year Direction,” it has approved a
much-diminished transportation improvement program for the next five years, although calling it an “improvement
program” might be seen as a stretch in today’s road building economy. The transportation commission, looking at declining
fuel tax revenues, figures it can afford to maintain what the state has but can’t afford significant new road and bridge
building for at least five years.

The department’s chief financial officer, Roberta Breaker, says motorists might not notice deterioration of the roads
because the department can afford maintenance. But she says they won’t see new interchanges or new four-lane
segments, or other improvements until voters decide how they’re going to provide more money for transportation.
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INSPECTIONS URGED FOR LAKE OF THE OZARKS DOCKS
July 11, 2012 By Mike Lear

Authorities at the Lake of the Ozarks are urging property owners on the Lake to have regular inspections done of their
docks, particularly for electrical safety.

Three people have been electrocuted at the Lake in the last week and three others were shocked in May but were pulled
from the water and survived.

Ameren owns property around the Lake and issues permits for new docks. Shoreline Manager Jeff Green says his company
hears about cases of electricity in the water each year, but it’s not what he calls common.

“I think this is a somewhat unusual circumstance that accumulated with a lot of people here at the Lake, enjoying the Lake.
It’s a hot summer so we have lots of people here right now. This is a terrible, tragic occurrence.”

Green says those who do feel electricity in the water generally want to swim toward a dock. “That’s probably not the best
thing to do because if the dock is energized you actually want to swim away from that dock, and certainly disconnect the
power immediately and call one of the local fire districts and have them come out and take a look at it, or a qualified
electrician.”

There are six fire protection districts around the Lake that participate in regulations adopted in 2006 of how electrical
installations are supposed to be done. Green says those districts can be called to conduct electrical safety inspections as
well as electricians.

Green says the only time an electrical safety inspection is required is when a boat dock permit is issued. Once that initial
inspection is done, a dock owner could potentially never have another one done, but Green says they should. “It’s each
individual dock owner’s responsibility to make sure that they keep their dock electrically safe and that almost demands
some kind of inspection.”
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NIXON SEEKS DISASTER AID FOR EVERY COUNTY
July 11, 2012 By Bob Priddy

Governor Nixon wants all of Missouri–every county—declared a disaster area. He bases the request on information
gathered by Farm Service Agency offices throughout the state.

The governor tells agriculture secretary Tom Vilsack farmers in every county have lost at least 30 percent of their crop
yields.

State FSA Farm Loan chief Dan Gieseke says Missouri is dry as a bone top to bottom, east to west.

Gieseke says a lot of crop farmers are spectators, a lot of combines will remain parked this fall, and a lot of cattle are going
to market early and at increasingly lower prices.

If Missouri gets the disaster declaration, farmers can get emergency loans and oher services from the Farm Service Agency.
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BLOG ZONE
NIXON WILL ANNOUNCE ACTION TODAY ON LEGISLATION
BY VIRGINIA YOUNG • vyoung@post-dispatch.com > 573-635-6178 | Posted: Thursday, July 12, 2012 6:45 am

JEFFERSON CITY • Will Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon sign or veto a bill that would let the state's employers choose whether to
cover sterilization, abortion and contraception? We may know tomorrow.

Nixon has scheduled a news conference for 11 a.m. today in his Capitol office to discuss "additional legislative actions." He
has until Saturday to sign or veto legislation passed during the last session.

The contraception bill (SB749) is among the hottest items on his desk. It would allow employers and insurers to decide not
to provide coverage for abortion, contraception or sterilization if such procedures run contrary to their religious beliefs or
moral convictions.

The bill's supporters include the Catholic bishops of Missouri, the Missouri Baptist Convention and Missouri Right to Life.
They argue that the law is needed to protect religious liberties threatened by the Obama administration's policy requiring
contraception coverage for most insurance plans.

Organized labor and Planned Parenthood affiliates in Missouri are among the groups that have urged a veto. They say the
bill threatens access to birth control for thousands of Missouri women and invites lawsuits by attempting to supersede
federal law.

"We remain optimistic that Gov. Nixon will veto the bill," said Alison Gee, vice president of public policy for Planned
Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri.

Nixon has not revealed his position, saying only that the bill was under review. He has received more than 10,000 messages
urging him to sign or veto the legislation.

During the legislative session, the governor's staff members tried to make sure that "medically necessary" sterilizations
would still be covered under the bill. But their attempt to insert a narrow definition of sterilization failed.

In the past, Nixon has straddled the fence on abortion issues, letting two anti-abortion bills become law without his
signature. But he is up for election this November and seems unlikely to take that approach this time.

Other controversial bills still awaiting the governor's action include a vehicle sales tax measure (HB1329) and a liquor
franchise bill. (SB837).

A recent Missouri Supreme Court decision knocked out local sales taxes on out-of-state auto purchases for buyers who live
in Missouri cities and counties that have not passed use taxes.

The state's car dealers implored the Legislature to restore the tax, saying they were losing sales to dealers across the state
line. Cities and counties that lack use taxes said they were losing revenue, too.
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The Legislature agreed to reimpose the tax. But Nixon signaled in May that he would veto the bill because it did not put the
local sales taxes to a public vote. Car dealers and municipalities have been lobbying Nixon to reverse course and sign the bill
anyway.

The complex liquor bill drew less public attention but spurred a hard-fought battle within the industry.

The sponsor, Senate Majority Leader Tom Dempsey, R-St. Charles, said his goal was to reinstate the liquor distribution
system in place before a recent federal court ruling, which he said could jeopardize Missouri distributors' jobs.

The American Beverage Institute contends the bill will require restaurants to pay higher prices to buy alcohol from
wholesalers and thus, will result in higher prices for consumers.
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NIXON MULLS RELIGIOUS LIBERTY BILL
By ALLEN PALMERI / associate editor, Pathways

Tuesday, July 10th, 2012

JEFFERSON CITY – A General Assembly-passed bill protecting employers from being required to buy insurance for abortions,
contraception or sterilizations for their employees if they object on religious grounds is awaiting a decision by Gov. Jay
Nixon, who has until July 14 to decide whether or not to sign it into law. It is possible Nixon may choose not to sign Senate
Bill 749, thus allowing it to become law.

Pro-abortion and other liberal groups are pressuring Nixon to veto it. The Missouri Chapter of the Secular Coalition for
America along with Planned Parenthood, the AFLCIO, the Sierra Club and the National Council of Jewish Women are among
the groups opposing the bill, which passed by overwhelming majorities in both the Missouri House and Senate in May. The
bill was sponsored by Sen. John Lamping, R-St. Louis County.

It is unclear what impact the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on ObamaCare could have on the Missouri law, since ObamaCare
requires religious institutions to provide abortion coverage in their health insurance plans to employees, even if it is against
their religious beliefs. It will directly impact Southwest Baptist University, Hannibal-LaGrange University and the Missouri
Baptist Children’s Home.

In a surprise move just days before the Supreme Court ruling on ObamaCare, Nixon distanced himself from the president’s
health care plan fueling speculation about the governor ’s decision on SB 749.

“I think I’ve been pretty clear … that the health insurance mandate is not something that I think is a good thing,” Nixon said.
“Without going into great detail, having the government um … um … order you to buy something like that is not something
that in the past I’ve supported.”

Meanwhile, Missouri Baptist leaders turned their attention to the ObamaCare ruling, warning of its infringement on
religious liberty.

“We are grieved by the Supreme Court’s decision on the Affordable Health Act, particularly the court’s ruling to uphold the
mandate that health insurance plans cover contraceptives that may cause abortions,” said Missouri Baptist Convention
(MBC) Executive Director John Yeats. “Through the health-care act, the president and his administration have declared war
on religion and freedom of conscience. And sadly, the Supreme Court is a party to this injustice. The court’s actions reflect
the secularization of our society and the marginalization of people of faith.

“This is a defining moment for our nation, and a grave threat to the religious liberty and freedom of conscience that all
Americans have enjoyed for more than two centuries. We ask all citizens to join us in praying for those who, for the sake of
conscience, will choose to obey God rather than men. “At the same time, we understand there are many people in Missouri
and throughout the nation that suffer physically and financially because they are unable to obtain medical coverage due to
pre-existing conditions or portability issues. We are greatly concerned for hurting people and believe the president and the
Congress should work together to address these provisions without creating a Constitutional crisis.”

MBC Legislative Liaison Kerry Messer said the Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act may or may not factor into
what the governor will do with SB 749. Ultimately he still wields the veto pen, but there is another factor to consider.
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“A sleeping giant has already been awakened and the American people, including Missourians, are outraged,” Messer said.
“Nov. 6 is the day to watch. The court ruling is the opinion of nine justices, but millions of voters get their day, too. This is
why we are still the greatest nation on the face of the earth.”
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UM PRESS SUPPORTERS TO RALLY THIS MONTH
BY JANE HENDERSON > Post-Dispatch Book Editor • jhenderson@post-dispatch.com | Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2012
10:03 am

The outcry over the decision to close the University of Missouri Press continues, with professors and press supporters
meeting later this month in Columbia to discuss ways to fight unilateral decisions from the system's new president.

The meeting begins at 11 a.m. July 24 in Room 2501 of the MU Student Center. It's sponsored by the MU chapter of the
American Association of University Professors (AAUP).

According to press supporter Bruce Joshua Miller:

"The meeting has a dual purpose: to show the strength of faculty opposition to a high-handed maneuver that was pulled
without faculty consultation, or at the very least to discuss such opposition, and as a rallying point for anyone and everyone
who knows how wrong this decision to close the press is---wrong for the university and scholarship, wrong for the people of
Missouri, and just plain wrong.

Even though press supporters were ignored at the UM system's Board of Curators meeting last month, a group trying to
save the press continues to grow in numbers. More than 4,300 people have signed an online petition and more than 2,300
"like" the Save the University of Missouri Press Facebook page.

On July 2, the Post-Dispatch published an editorial critical of the curators' approval of $35 million in program and faculty
salary cuts (which included $400,000 for the 54-year-old university press).

At the same time, the university gleefully announced it would issue $200 million in bonds for better and bigger athletic
facilities. The editorial said this showed that "sports has become the tail that wags the dog. America may be 12th among 36
industrialized nations in the number of college degrees awarded, but we're No. 1 in football and work-out facilities."

With Miller, Ned Stuckey-French has been leading the Save the University of Missouri Press fight. An English professor at
Florida State University who had published a book with the UM press, Stuckey-French said by email Wednesday:

The University has from the start and continues to make noise about a "new model" for the Press. All discussions of this
new model have been held behind closed doors, but some of their outside "consultants" have suggested to us what it might
look like -- fewer books, mostly literary rather than scholarly or regional books, none of the current staff, perhaps only one
on-site staff person, most work (all but some acquisition) done by interns or farmed out to freelancers, distribution and
marketing farmed out, greatly reduced revenue and control for the University, little focus on Missouri heritage, elimination
of current series (e.g., Twain and his Circle, etc.), etc., etc. We anticipated this kind of pretend or phony press from the start
and the language of the petition has always been meant to speak to this kind of maneuver on the University's part. Our
efforts have also focused on making these discussions transparent and involving the current staff in them, on retaining the
current staff and press while any re-thinking of the Press takes place (i.e., don't destroy the Press and start from scratch but
reform the current Press).
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SPEED CAMERA PEDDLER GOT STATE RED LIGHT WITH
LIFETIME NURSING HOME BAN
July 11, 2012 3:48 pm | Author: Jerry Berger

You may have been caught by one of the speed cameras set up on trailers in Charlack and other north St. Louis County
municipalities by the shadowy company B&W Sensors. Perhaps city and law enforcement authorities don’t know that John
M. Baine – the “B” in B&W Sensors – is making money from them while the State of Missouri has permanently barred him
from working in the nursing home industry, apparently because of past financial irregularities. The Missouri Department of
Health and Senior Services confirms that the same John M. Baine has a lifetime ban from the state’s nursing home industry
arising from his former ownership of the one-time St. Louis Hills Retirement Center on Chippewa in south St. Louis. State
court records show more than 40 lawsuits against Baine, his wife and their former companies arising from their past
nursing home operations. Baine could end up being the bane of city attorneys who have to explain to their aldermen and
taxpayers his past record of abusing trust of seniors and creditors.
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ED MARTIN'S PLEDGE TO THWART OBAMACARE FROM HIS "FIRST
MINUTE IN OFFICE": WILL IT RESONATE?
Riverfront Times

Tea Party darling and GOP candidate for attorney general Ed Martin just released this new TV spot, which begins: "Almost
30 states filed lawsuits to stop Obamacare. Not Missouri. Our attorney general sat it out." That's technically true, but
slightly misleading.

What democratic AG Chris Koster did do was file a brief last year on Missouri's behalf in one of the three feeder cases that
became the single landmark Supreme Court case upholding the Affordable Care Act.

Koster -- a Democrat -- wrote at the time that he felt compelled to file the brief because Missourians had rejected the
legitimacy of the individual insurance mandate in a 2010 ballot referendum (which brought federal and state law into
conflict).

In his brief, Koster adopted conservatives' main argument against the ACA: That the individual mandate was an
unconstitutional broadening of Congress' power to regulate interstate commerce. However, Koster did suggest -- in a
lukewarm fashion -- one way the Supreme Court might salvage the law: Refer to the money that an insurance-resister must
pay as a "tax" instead of a "penalty."

Which, as you know, is precisely the position that Chief Justice John Roberts took in his tie-breaking decision to uphold the
ACA.

None of this will matter if Koster crushes it in the upcoming AG election, but we're left to wonder: Is Ed Martin echoing the
view of most Missourians? What do they think about the ACA, now that the Supreme Court has signed off on it?

Daily RFT couldn't find any recent polls on the subject that break out a Missouri component, but a Washington Post - ABC
news poll suggested the Americans may be accepting the law because they're now evenly divided over it, in contrast to the
widespread disapproval that reigned before the high court's hand-down.

Of the folks who still don't like the ACA, only about two thirds want to repeal all or parts of it, as Ed Martin so vehemently
wants to do.

If Missouri truly is a bellwether state, then Missourians may be ready to move on from this debate -- leaving Ed Martin's
appeal to fall on unreceptive ears.
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IN FIRST TV AD, MISSOURI ATTORNEY GENERAL CANDIDATE
PROMISES TO STOP 'OBAMACARE'
BY NICHOLAS J.C. PISTOR • npistor@post-dispatch.com > 314-340-8265 | Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2012 11:00 am

Ed Martin, the Republican running for Missouri's attorney general, promised in his first television ad to stop President
Barack Obama's healthcare law, calling it a "fundamental threat to our health, economy, and future."

"Almost 30 states filed lawsuits to stop Obamacare," Martin says in the ad. "Not Missouri. Our attorney general sat it out...
During my first minute in office, and I mean minute, we'll have a new legal strategy to stop Obamacare."

The thirty second ad is titled "Minute," playing off what Martin says he'll do in his first moment in office.

Martin is facing Adam Lee Warren in the Aug. 7 Republican primary. The winner will face incumbent Missouri Attorney
General Chris Koster.
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MARTIN AD PROMISES NEW LEGAL STRATEGY TO UPEND FEDERAL
HEALTH CARE LAW
By Jason Rosenbaum, Beacon staff

10:05 am on Wed, 07.11.12

Ed Martin, a Republican candidate for Missouri attorney general, has released his first television ad this week; it is a spot
that focuses on his opposition to the federal health care law.

Entitled “Minute,” the 30-second ad features the St. Louis lawyer standing in what appears to be a hospital. Martin notes
that “over 30 states filed lawsuits to stop Obamacare – but not Missouri.”

“Our attorney general sat it out,” said Martin, referring to incumbent Democratic Attorney General Chris Koster. “I’m Ed
Martin. During my first minute in office – and I mean minute – we’ll have a new legal strategy to stop Obamacare.”

Adding this is “no time for the wishy-washy,” Martin goes on to say that the federal health care law is a “fundamental
threat to our health, economy and future.”

Koster filed an amicus brief last April stating that a mandate prompting everyone to buy health insurance runs afoul of the
U.S. Constitution's "commerce clause," which he said "bars Congress from compelling citizens to step into the stream of
commerce when they have either neglected or chosen not to do so." He added though that tossing out the mandate would
not affect implementation of other parts of the law.

The mandate, of course, ended up being upheld under Congress’ taxation authority.

Martin -- who previously was running for U.S. Senate and the U.S. House during this election cycle – is squaring off against
Livingston County Prosecutor Adam Warren in the GOP primary for attorney general. But Martin has collected big
donations – including a $250,000 contribution from TAMKO CEO David Humphries – and was tapped to lead the Missouri
Republican Party’s Missouri Victory 2012 campaign.

Koster has already accumulated a sturdy treasury for his re-election bid, including roughly $417,250 in large donations of
$5,000 or above during the past fundraising quarter.

This week, Martin was part of a cadre of Republicans that denounced Vice President Joe Biden’s fundraising trip to help out
U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill. He also went on a statewide tour yesterday with House Speaker Pro Tem Shane Schoeller, R-
Willard, to criticize ballot summary language on a measure outlawing a governor setting up a health insurance exchange
through an executive order.

Schoeller, who is in a three-way GOP primary for secretary of state, released his first television ad in June. According to
campaign spokesman Patrick Morrow, the ad is running primarily in the GOP hotbed of southwest Missouri.
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AMERICAN CROSSROADS’ $70 MILLION SENATE BLITZ
Roll Call

American Crossroads and its sister organization are poised to inject up to
$70 million into the battle for the Senate on behalf of Republicans.

The GOP-aligned super PAC and its affiliated issue-advocacy arm, Crossroads GPS, have reserved $23.5 million in fall
television advertising in six states and will have invested $10 million on targeted Senate contests by mid-August. With
minimal overhead and competitively bid consultant contracts and by paying industry-low
3 percent media placement commissions, the group funnels about 95 percent of contributions into political activity, which
this cycle will include on-air and online advertising, phone work and direct mail.

In an interview with Roll Call, American Crossroads President and CEO Steven Law affirmed Senate Minority Leader Mitch
McConnell’s assessment that control of the chamber could go either way on Nov. 6, saying it’s his organization’s goal to tip
the scale for the GOP.

“We agree with Sen. McConnell that the current odds of taking the Senate are 50-50, and it’s our job to improve those
odds,” said Law, a former aide to the Kentucky Republican.

American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS spent a total of $70 million during the 2010 cycle, including $50 million on Senate
races and $20 million on House contests. This year, their proposed $70 million expenditure on the Senate represents less
than a quarter of a planned $300 million budget that includes a heavy focus on the presidential race and limited investment
in House races. Last cycle, the National Republican Senatorial Committee spent about $105 million.

Crossroads officials declined to reveal their race-by-race messaging strategy or to provide an exact road map for their
planned Senate race spending.

But they said clues could be found in the 10 battleground states that they have already invested in: Florida, Indiana,
Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, North Dakota, Ohio and Virginia. The super PAC’s fall reservations
include
$6.2 million in Florida by American Crossroads. Crossroads GPS has reserved $2.3 million in Missouri, $1.8 million in
Nevada, $706,000 in North Dakota,
$6.7 million in Ohio and $5.7 million in Virginia.

Law views the Senate map as ripe for Republicans to net the four seats needed to win the majority. But he said the political
climate is less favorable than in 2010, conceding that Democrats have recruited superior candidates in certain races and
maintained a significant fundraising edge in others. He said Crossroads would invest where its deep war chest could fill a
gap left by the party or swing an expensive, competitive race.

“The Senate may not be impacted for good or ill by what’s going on at the presidential level,” Law added. “Senate races
tend to be a choice. There is so much coverage and activity. Voters tend to get to know both candidates.”

Perhaps because of its success last cycle, which coincided with a wave election that saw Republicans win control of the
House and flip seven Senate seats — or perhaps because high-profile Republican strategist Karl Rove is among its founders,
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American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS have evolved into a super PAC heavyweight against which most others are
measured.

The organization is structured similar to a corporation, with a board of directors that approves spending and a small but
seasoned staff. The board chairman is Mike Duncan, a former Republican National Committee chairman.

Rove, who declined to comment for this story, handles most of the fundraising and does not charge the super PAC
commission for that work or get paid in any other fashion. He is not on the board and rarely advises on an individual race or
ad buy, functioning only as an “informal adviser.”

Most strategic decisions are made by Law, who served as executive director of the NRSC under McConnell, and Carl Forti,
the super PAC’s political director whose résumé includes political director for Mitt Romney’s 2008 presidential campaign
and communications director and chief independent expenditure strategist for the National Republican Congressional
Committee in 2004 and 2006. Forti also plays a key role and helped launch the pro-Romney super PAC, Restore Our Future.
Crossroads spokesman Jonathan Collegio was Forti’s deputy at the NRCC.

Crossroads saves as much of every dollar possible for ad buys. It pays almost no fundraising commissions or fees and solicits
bids from consultants on polling, ad production and other campaign services. Campaigns can pay anywhere from 6 percent
to 15 percent commission to media buyers. But Crossroads pays
3 percent, in part because of its volume of buys.

Crossroads’ spartan office occupies part of a top floor high-rise in downtown, Washington, D.C. Visitors enter through a pair
of wooden double doors marked only by an inconspicuous nameplate and white doorbell. With Rove serving as its premier
front man, the political group attracts its fair share of protesters. The staff relishes those attacks, hanging protesters’
posters on the wall like political taxidermy.

Staffers hung one poster that declared “Indict Karl Rove” to the wall with masking tape. Just inside the entrance, there’s a
framed cease and desist letter from President Bill Clinton’s counsel to Jo Ann Davidson, a Crossroads’ board member. The
October 2011 letter asked Crossroads to stop using a YouTube image of Clinton in one of its advertisements. It didn’t work;
the spot finished its flight.

Otherwise, the white walls are mostly undecorated save for a few generic-brand flat-screen televisions. There’s a trendy
red poster that reads “Keep Calm and Vote Republican.”

The space is a cross between a swanky political consulting firm and a gritty campaign committee office; the young staffers
walk around without jackets and ties.

A large carpeted conference room anchors the office, filled by an expansive black table with seats for 14. It’s a symbolic nod
to the board’s influence in the organization.

About 10 board members meet almost monthly to approve overall strategy and a framework for spending in individual
states. It’s a departure from the consultant-driven model of past third-party groups, for which hired hands could control
the ad making, ad buying and strategy — often to their own financial benefit.

“We see ourselves — certainly as not the leader — but as a convener of advocacy in the center-right sphere,” Law said.
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EDITORIALS … & LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
EDITORIAL: CANDIDATES' SILLINESS INSULTS VOTERS RIGHT AND
LEFT
By the Editorial Board | Posted: Thursday, July 12, 2012 12:10 am

Missourians have seen their share of nasty campaign commercials, but rarely has there been one that insults Democrats
and Republicans alike, to say nothing of insulting the intelligence of viewers.

But that's what Republican U.S. Senate candidate John Brunner's "Sound Familiar?" spot does. It portrays his two rivals for
the GOP nomination in the Aug. 7 primary — U.S. Rep. Todd Akin of Wildwood and former state Treasurer Sarah Steelman
of Rolla — as big-spending, pork-barreling politicians. The photographs of Mr. Akin and Ms. Steelman then morph into
photographs of President Barack Obama and Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill.

To portray Mr. Akin and Ms. Steelman as big-spenders crosses the line from disingenuous to dishonest.

Ms. Steelman hasn't cast a legislative vote since 2004, her last year as a state senator before being elected treasurer. Mr.
Brunner criticizes her for a 2002 vote to "raise the gas tax." In fact, the vote was to keep the fuel tax at 17 cents a gallon,
where it had been since 1996. The measure was popular with both parties. In those halcyon days, Republicans actually
believed that public investment in good roads was good for business.

As for Mr. Akin, conservative and liberal groups that rank congressional voting records agree that he is one of the two or
three most conservative members of the House. Mr. Brunner criticizes him for voting four times to raise the federal debt
ceiling, back in the days before the new breed of know-nothing Republicans began distorting that issue.

Debt ceiling 101: No debt was added. The money already was spent. Raising the debt ceiling merely authorizes the
government to meet its obligations to credit markets, thus avoiding default and financial catastrophe.

Mr. Brunner, who lives in Frontenac, styles himself as a business expert off a career running a health and beauty products
firm that his grandfather started. He was CEO of Vi-Jon Corp. in Overland until 2009. Surely he knows default is a bad thing.

To be sure, Ms. Steelman has leveled silly charges at Mr. Brunner, too. For example: His daughter once gave money to a
group that supports humane treatment of farm animals. How awful. She's even snide about the fact that he comes from
the St. Louis area, a crime of which Mr. Akin also is guilty.

Not to be outdone, Democrats are joining in the silliness. A "Democratic operative" this week leaked to the website
Politico.com the news that Vi-Jon, Mr. Brunner's firm, had been two months late paying 2006 personal property taxes on an
airplane.

Apparently Democrats hope this will offset the earth-shattering campaign faux pas caused by the disclosure last year that
Ms. McCaskill and her husband, developer Joe Shepard, had overlooked several years of taxes on a plane owned by one of
Mr. Shepard's companies. The senator's back tax bill was more than $300,000, but she had a bigger, faster and more
expensive plane than Vi-Jon's and was far later in paying the taxes.
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The country has serious, perhaps intractable, problems, yet Ms. Brunner and Ms. Steelman spend their time throwing mud
bombs. Shockingly, Todd ("The heart of liberalism really is a hatred for God") Akin looks like the grown-up candidate in the
GOP race.

Meanwhile, Democrats and Republicans are channeling Tattoo on "Fantasy Island," pointing at each other and crying, "De
plane! De plane!"

It's silly and it's sad. Missouri deserves better.
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PROGRAM AUDIT
Thursday, July 12, 2012, Southeast Missourian

Perhaps the biggest issue on the minds of Americans right now is jobs. And in Missouri this is no different.

One effort to stimulate Missouri's job growth in recent years has been the state's Quality Jobs program. Supported by
members of both parties, the program -- administered by the Department of Economic Development -- offers tax breaks to
businesses that create or retain a minimum number of jobs. Qualifying businesses must also pay average wages and cover
half of the employees' health insurance premiums.

Last week Auditor Tom Schweich gave the department a "poor" rating for its administration of the program. The audit
contended that the estimated number of jobs for approved projects was overstated by the department, as was the amount
of money projected that businesses would invest in facilities and equipment.

Since the program was signed into law in 2005, the department approved projects through 2011 that would, at an
estimate, create 45,646 jobs. This estimate was later reduced 26,686. But according to the audit, only 7,176 jobs were
created through Dec. 31 -- though in the current time frame more jobs may still be created.

The audit also notes that for the applications approved through the end of last year, $4.93 billion was projected to be spent
in facilities and equipment. But as of February actual expenditures only totaled $1.1 billion.

The department maintains the state still benefits from the program. Schweich doesn't deny that. However, he said in an
interview with The Associated Press that the projections were "overly optimistic" and the monitoring was "woefully
inadequate."

The good news is that tax breaks are issued only for jobs created, not projections. Still, Schweich makes a valid point that
the department could do a better job in its projections and verification process.
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PUNISHMENT FOR FORMER GOVERNOR WILSON WAS FAIR
Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2012 5:00 pm Washington Missourian

Former Gov. Roger Wilson made a mistake and he admitted it. His problem was that his mistake also violated a law that he
should have been aware of since he was a veteran of politics and understood the principles of ethics as to political
donations.

Wilson entered a guilty plea to a charge of misusing money to make a political donation. He was given two years’
probation, must perform 100 hours of community service, pay a fine of $5,000, repay half of a $5,000 political contribution
involved in the case, and pay a $2,000 fine to the Missouri Ethics Commission.

He was indicted by a federal grand jury. The charge was a misdemeanor. To some people it was a bit unusual for a grand
jury to be given a misdemeanor case. But since this crime involved a former governor, the case was a bit unusual also,
especially in Missouri. We won’t judge the prosecutors in this case because we aren’t privy to all the details in the case.

The judge’s sentence was fair. Wilson could have received up to six months in prison under federal sentencing guidelines.
Chief Magistrate Judge Mary Ann Medler pointed to Wilson’s past record in nearly a quarter-century of public service in
opting not to require jail time. She cited the large number of letters of support for Wilson and said Wilson should be
grateful for that. Wilson said he was, apologized for his mistake and said he “deeply regrets it.” Wilson also said there are
“no excuses” for what he did.

Wilson, 64, Columbia, was a state senator for 14 years and served two terms as lieutenant governor and became governor
for three months after Gov. Mel Carnahan was killed in a plane crash. He also held public office in Boone County. His record
as a public official was, as the judge put it, exemplary.

We don’t know what the future holds for Wilson, but with his experience, he certainly has talent that could be put to good
use in public service. Although his mistake was minor, a misdemeanor, it was wrong. His many friends still have trust in him
and we, along with them, wish him well.
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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR, JULY 12
Posted: Thursday, July 12, 2012 12:00 am, St. Louis Post Dispatch

An upscale, homogenous Soulard would mean less local flavor

The city is developing a master plan for Soulard Market. It should be noted that on Saturday mornings Soulard Market is a
busy, vital marketplace. There is striking diversity among the customers, with all races and economic groups represented.
Although many of the stands sell commodity produce, there are farmers selling their own homegrown fruits and
vegetables, free-range and cage-free poultry and eggs and other agricultural products, including honey and butter. In fact, I
have found a greater variety of local produce at Soulard than at other farmers markets, and the local produce is available
earlier in the spring and later into the fall. The prices at Soulard often are lower than those at other farmers markets,
making the products available to a greater number of people. Furthermore, the non-local, commodity produce that other
sellers provide is typically available at bargain prices, an important feature in an urban area.

It certainly is true that Soulard needs upgrading and repair, and I am encouraged that the city recognizes the importance of
investment in this St. Louis treasure. However, I would be saddened to see the earthy, essential character of Soulard lost in
order to make it more upscale and homogenous.

Susan Randich • St. Louis

The border war has ended

Regarding "Legislators must OK Jayhawk plates" (July 6): It is too bad Missourians who attended the University of Kansas
can't show their school pride in the form of a license plate. The border war rivalry between the Tigers and Jayhawks has
come to an end. The University of Missouri severed those ties when it chose to remove itself from the Big 12 and plant
itself in the supposed greener, more competitive pastures of the Southeastern Conference.

Many people from Missouri have attended Kansas, and some Kansas alumni have relocated here because of jobs. Go
Jayhawks! Rock chalk!

Anne Maraccini • St. Charles

Support for the stores?

Regarding "Hold-up in Hadley" (July 10): If the plan proceeds, there will be three "big box" home improvement stores
within about a one-mile radius: Lowe's in Maplewood, The Home Depot in Brentwood and Menard's in Richmond Heights. I
wonder if anyone is planning what to do with one of those "boxes" when the store inside it folds because of lack of
business? Does anyone else wonder how this area is going to support these businesses?

Brett Ross • University City

Still being written

Regarding "Improvising priest barred from pulpit" (July 10): My oh my, Belleville Diocese Bishop Edward Braxton has just
stripped the Rev. Bill Rowe of St. Mary's Church in Mount Carmel, Ill., of his faculties as a priest and he can no longer
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celebrate the sacraments. All this because, like the gospel writers, he proclaimed the good news to people of his parish in a
"language" they could most understand.

The writings in the Bible were written by different people with different theologies and ideologies, who were identifying
events in the past and adapting those writings to the people they addressed. Could the Rev. Rowe be so far off?

Eucharist is not the bread and wine but the community formed by hearing those 'stories" and relating them to today's
issues and sharing a meal as a sign of solidarity in the good news of the scriptures, which still are being written.

Anne Harter • Belleville

De facto laicization

Belleville Bishop Edward Braxton never ceases to surprise the folks in his diocese ("Improvising priest barred from pulpit,"
July 10). Apparently, he informed the Rev. Bill Rowe that not only was he to vacate his church rectory, but also that
effective July 10 he no longer could function as a priest. Of course, the world now knows of the Rev. Rowe's horrible crime:
trying to make the archaic language of the Roman Mass more meaningful to his flock. But because he refused to stop that
practice, he lost his parish.

The Rev. Rowe has served the people of God for more than 40 years and had an honorable career as a military chaplain.
Now, the bishop has sent him an email — that's right, a lousy email — notifying the Rev. Rowe of Bishop Braxton's
hierarchal decision to effectively remove the father from the priesthood.

The Rev. Rowe no longer can say Mass, conduct marriage ceremonies or baptisms or do any of the other priestly things he
has done for more than 40 years. It is a de facto laicization, which the Vatican does for grave reasons. Many priests accused
of sexually assaulting young people were not defrocked.

That the Rev. Rowe received an email instead of being notified personally by the bishop says much. Bishop Braxton's
continued tenure as bishop of Belleville defies logic and is an embarrassment to all who call themselves Catholic.

Dave Arnold • Shiloh

Laying a foundation

The article "High court provided session of surprises" (July 9) said, "What is unclear is whether Roberts' search for a middle
ground on health care — and the retribution from the right — will have a lasting effect." I certainly don't think it will. If
anything, Chief Justice John Roberts' opinion lays a legal foundation for future conservative wins by advancing a
conservative legal theory.

It is very unwise to take the opinions of one term, even though some of the higher-profile opinions this session were
considered to be to the left, and paint the Roberts court to be finally "truly born" after seven years. The writer should
consider the whole seven years and look to the future.

If next year, which is expected to include high-profile opinions on gay marriage, human rights abuses, affirmative action and
voting rights, ends up to be anything but conservative (because, perhaps, there may have been more involved in this past
session), we then could consider it as the beginning of a lasting effect. To make any claims beforehand is premature.
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Joseph A. Custer • St. Louis

Yelping

Throw a rock into a group of dogs, and the one that gets hit will yelp. The Democrats have charged that presumptive
Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, a former governor of Massachusetts, outsourced many jobs when he
headed Bain Capital. And Mr. Romney is yelping big-time.

Now, Mr. Romney is accusing Presidential Barack Obama of supporting outsourcing. His claim is that the president has
supported and invested federal funds in clean-energy companies that often rely on Chinese firms for product
manufacturing. Is the expectation that clean-energy companies receiving such support should have special restrictions
imposed that other firms escape? That certainly would produce fierce criticism.

It is clear that Mr. Romney is displaying a senseless argument toward the charge against him. But when you are in pain, that
is what you do.

Ted Morrison • Rock Hill

Hedging his bets

"Democrats attack Romney over banking, taxes" (July 9), an article about offshore accounts owned by former
Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, raises serious questions. If these
wealthy folks are job creators, why (besides tax advantages) is the money not here in the United States creating jobs? Why
should a man who wants to become president, and who thinks that he will make things better, have so much money
overseas? A hedge bet?

Why should a construction worker pay a greater percentage of taxes for his work than Mr. Romney, who chose to make
money in Bain and other investments? Is Mr. Romney's work more important? Finally, Mr. Romney's father made his tax
returns available to the public when he ran for office. What is the younger Mr. Romney hiding?

Jay Warner • Wildwood
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LETTERS | TEA PARTY, DIRTY U.S. SENATE RACE, OFFENSIVE
BILLBOARD
Kansas City Star

Old water technology

The water collectors known as “dew ponds” were invented in prehistoric times, but the technology is nearly forgotten
today. With water shortages now and in the future of this world, and more water vapor in the air because of climate
change, this ancient technology can help provide fresh water and help us all.

Look it up. Google dew ponds.

Howard J. Flint

Kansas City

Tea party not dead

Contrary to the viewpoint of some, the tea party is not losing steam.

The tea party is not a political party. It is made up of a silent segment of Americans who do not agree with the direction our
country is heading.

We do not believe in borrowing (taking) money out of the Social Security trust fund and leaving worthless IOUs. We do not
agree that we should have allowed the home mortgage industry to put buyers into homes they could not afford.

We are tired of hearing that we are the only party that needs to compromise. Compromise should go both ways. We
believe the government spends too much money, is out of control and is stealing our children’s future.

We are patriots and taxpayers and are not “useful idiots.” We are not dead as some would suppose, and I promise you will
see us in action in November.

Lowell Davis

Excelsior Springs

Criticism way off base

I’m a little confused on what state Rep. Chris Molendorp’s point was in his July 2 letter to the editor.

It seems he had moderate praise for MOST — Missouri’s 529 College Savings Plan, but then took The Kansas City Star to
task about the editorial on June 25, “Missouri has top college savings plan.”

Then he continued by bashing State Treasurer Clint Zweifel on how part of the program has been performing. Molendorp
further related that Zweifel preferred voters see only his successes.
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I would like to remind Mr. Molendorp about the state of the economy from mid-2008 to the present. As we all know, most
of us have been hurting. Surely Chris can see this.

If we want to look for less-than-stellar performance, we need only look at the Missouri legislature. Sad to say Rep.
Molendorp is part of it.

Leo Atkinson

Archie, Mo.

KC billboards law

The Star’s June 25 editorial, “KC’s billboard law makes sense,” raised an important question: Should billboards in the path
of roadway construction be moved, or should we divert road funds to buy billboards via condemnation?

The editorial opposed moving billboards. We favor the relocation of billboards in lieu of condemnation, which eats up time
and money, two precious ingredients in road building.

Moving billboards in a big interchange project in Milwaukee saved $11 million-plus in condemnation costs.

Government’s power to condemn private property is a necessary part of road building. However, this awesome power is
balanced with a protection in the Bill of Rights, the “takings clause” of the Fifth Amendment: “... nor shall private property
be taken for public use without just compensation.”

The editorial mentioned that the city paid $1 million-plus for a condemned carwash in the path of the Northland road
project. The editorial argued that if taxpayers already spent big money for a carwash, then why not spend more to
condemn billboards?

Condemnation isn’t necessary because the billboards can be moved. The state agrees with that position. Gov. Jay Nixon
signed legislation Tuesday, allowing billboard relocation along interstates.

Bob Fessler

General Manager

Lamar Advertising

Co.-Kansas City

Dirty GOP Senate race

Many folks have received a colorful piece of mail from John Brunner for Senate. The piece asserts that, based on their
voting records, both Todd Akin and Sarah Steelman are earmark-loving, pork-barrel-spending “career politicians.” We’re
promised that Brunner, if elected as Missouri’s senator, would vote for neither earmarks nor pork-barrel spending.

Akin and Steelman are former state legislators. Each cast hundreds of votes, undoubtedly voting for bills that included
spending that, had it been at their discretion, they would have removed.

The reality is the legislative process doesn’t work that way. Members often have to give and take. Frequently this means
supporting passage of a bill that includes spending they otherwise oppose.
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Having never cast a vote, Brunner can add up spending and, like an armchair quarterback, declare Akin and Steelman
losers. But doing so proves no more about their fitness to represent Missouri than evaluating Brunner based solely on how
many people he laid off at Vi-Jon.

Ronald Reagan is famous for his 11th commandment — thou shalt not speak ill of fellow Republicans. Brunner’s smear of
Akin and Steelman based solely on their voting records violates that commandment.

Franz Kohler

O’Fallon, Mo.

Cures for ailing U.S.

Our politicians can’t seem to get their acts together — greed, corruption and a lack foresight, plus no backbone to do
what’s right. So here’s my proposal of what needs to be done.

• Every politician needs to immediately take a 20 percent pay cut to set an example for the rest of the country. That
includes the president, vice president, all members of Congress and all cabinet members.

• No retiring politician or one who was defeated in an election should be allowed to hire on with any PAC. Why should they
be allowed to use skills gained while upholding and defending our Constitution to benefit themselves and their PAC? In my
opinion, this is treason. The politicians should wait at least six years.

• Every penny from the Treasury that goes to institutions, organizations, national defense, Social Security, Medicare,
education and even welfare and unemployment needs to be cut by at least 1 percent — plus any other expenditures. Do it
immediately. We either do it voluntarily or those holding our debt will make the choice for us.

Our country is bankrupt. Only the printing of more money keeps us going. This will only last so long.

God bless America.

Ronald Nash

Kansas City

Offensive billboard

On Wornall Road just south of 78th Street is a toxic excuse for freedom of speech.

I am a true blue urban girl, but this does not mean that while participating in the complexities of this lifestyle I have grown
immune to certain inalienable truths.

Truth one: While driving to work, I do not deserve to be accosted by soft porn billboards that couch themselves as
Lichtenstein art.

Pabst Blue Ribbon needs a serious wake-up call if company officials think women don’t see the blatant sexism and porn in
this advertising campaign.

Place the woman’s face turned upward with glossed, full lips taking in liquid with a man, and it’s the same feminist issue.
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Let’s get hip, Kansas City, and remove Wornall Road’s toxic excuse for freedom of speech.

Tyler Stewart

Kansas City

Soaked by water bill

Kansas City water bills have been increasing for the last three years, any Kansas City Water Services Department bill
recipient can confirm. Environmental Protection Agency and Clean Water Act requirements are getting the blame.

Your water bill is a combination of several charges derived from water use. My June 2009 bill was $43. My June 2012 bill
was $167.

It is similar to neighbors’ and is nearly a 300 percent increase.

When you combine the increases mentioned in The Star, the Water Services Department bill could easily exceed $300 a
month.

The water department is the third-largest city employer behind the police and fire departments. Paying an average of $100
more a month should provide the water department at least $350 million to $400 million today. Is that not enough to cover
the EPA’s requirements without bonds?

The middle class is disappearing. This is another inflation item to add to food and fuel increases, and asset losses, combined
with various tax increases to subsidize Kansas City’s tax increment financing, also known as bribes and widely accepted.

Want to see who is benefiting? Follow the money.

Rick Gossett

Kansas City

Keeping KC litter-free

I’ve been cleaning up a segment of a city street and two park areas for about five years. It doesn’t seem to slow down the
littering.

My thought: Issue warning citations. I’m not sure what department would best serve that.

Do it for a couple of years — with repeat offenders getting a fine or being required to do street cleanup in lieu of payment.
The fines should go to fund a citywide cleaning crew, and those who choose to work off their fines would help with the
labor force.

I’d like to see Mayor Sly James lead this. I hope there are more comments to come on this untidy subject.

Jim Pitts

Vine Street Neighborhood

Kansas City
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LETTER TO THE EDITOR: HUNTING IS BIG PART OF MISSOURI'S
ECONOMY
By Noah Stoll

July 12, 2012 | 6:00 a.m. CDT, Columbia Missourian

I've spent my entire life working on a farm — planting, harvesting, replanting, etc. — but I've also grown up around the
great outdoors and hunting. Both are key pieces in the state economy and I'm proud to have a hand in both.

An organization called Hunting Works for Missouri reports that hunters' annual spending is equal to more than half the
total cash receipts for cattle and soy beans in the state. Both of these resources account for two of the most valuable
commodities in the agricultural field of Missouri.

Being a part of a small rural town, I also have the opportunity to see the impact on local economies. With 609,000 hunters
in Missouri, more than $433 million in salaries and wages are supported through the sport of hunting and hunters.

Hunting is an important part of life and an even more important part of our state's economy. This information needs to be
shared with all residents of Missouri.

Noah Stoll is a resident of Alma and is passionate about hunting.

								
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