Jeanette Mott Oxford for State Representative 2010

Saturday, February 02, 2008

JMO4Rep Campaign Update - Feb. 1, 2008 Edition

Friends, allies, and constituents,

What a difference a few days makes! When I wrote you on Jan. 21 to update you on the beginning of Legislative Session and the Governor's State of the State Address, little did I know that Gov. Matt Blunt would announce the next day that he was not running for a second term. I don't think that my characterizing his speech as full of misinformation, anemic public policy initiatives, and fear-mongering had anything to do with his decision, but I do think the mounting reviews (and polling numbers) of his administration as a disaster for Missouri played a crucial role.

Many of you have asked me "What's really going on? Do you believe the governor's story?" I take a wait and watch position on most questions that require a guess at a person's inner motivations. There certainly are dozens of rumors circulating that some scandal is brewing or that Gov. Blunt is maneuvering to move into everything from his father's Congressional seat to a vice presidential candidate position. Perhaps we'll learn more in time, but for now let's continue the work of seeking healthcare for the uninsured and making a high quality public education a civil right for every child. There is much to do in Missouri, regardless of who is governor and which party is in power.

Don't Forget to Vote on February 5, 2008!

Here are several reminders that relate to the upcoming presidential primary, sales tax vote, and special elections that are set for Tuesday, February 5:

"Stand for Change Rally" with Sen. Barack Obama
Where: Edward Jones Dome
701 Convention Plz.
St. Louis, MO

When: Saturday, February 2nd, 2008 -
Doors Open: 7:00 PM CST
Program Begins: 8:30 PM CST

This event is free and open to the public. An RSVP is strongly encouraged. Members of the public may RSVP online at or by calling Obama for America's St. Louis Office at 314-436-2708.
***For security reasons, bags are not allowed inside the event. Please limit personal items. No signs or banners are permitted.***
Note: Obama already has my vote as I will be in Jefferson City on February 5, so I recently voted absentee. I respect those of you who support other candidates - we certainly have had an excellent slate to choose from on the Democratic side of the ticket this year! I'd also be glad to share more about my decision to back Barack if any would like to inquire at

Proposition S - Half-cent sales tax increase proposed for St. Louis City
My position on Proposition S is Vote No. Please know that my position is about the financing method and not about the stated goal of having more police officers on the street and offering better compensation to our first responders. In truth most of the funds from the vote would go to pay pensions for the police as the City has been directed by a lawsuit. I believe we should pay officers more and increase funding for public safety, but costs should come from a source that does not increase the burden on those least able to pay. The bottom 60% of Missourians already pay a disproportionate share of state and local taxes; this sales tax would make this even worse for City residents. Other funding options exist, and better decisions certainly could have been made in the past.

To read more about my position, see:


Taking Back the House from Special Interests and Theocrats - One Seat at a Time

Folks who support social justice have two important opportunities to move forward on Tuesday, February 5, due to Special Elections to fill House vacancies. The seat for District 16 in St. Peters was held by Carl Bearden, former GOP Speaker Pro Tem of the House, until mid-2007. Bearden resigned to take a high paid lobbying position. The seat for District 158 in Cape Girardeau had been held by former GOP Rep. Nathan Cooper who resigned after being convicted of immigration fraud last year. (Info at:

Democratic candidates Tom Fann in the 16th District and Mike Keefe in the 158th offer an opportunity to move away from the legacies of Bearden and Cooper. Bearden and Cooper carried the water for special interests that do their best to buy influence in Jefferson City and also for the Christian nationalist agenda that a vocal minority of legislators represent (but whose messages a broader group of legislators manipulate).

I don't agree with Fann and Keefe on every issue, but I do agree with them about healthcare and several labor issues. Cape is a long way to go to help Keefe, but St. Louis area folks are encouraged to go to St. Peters to work with Fann over the next few days. Sign up to phone bank or to canvas door-to-door (hardy souls who can stand the snow and cold) by contacting House Democratic Campaign Committee Executive Director Ronny Richardson at or by phone at 573-634-8176
ext. 121. Or contact Fann through; 636-928-7639.

A note on Christian nationalism: I am a person of faith, and my faith tradition is Christianity. I do affirm the Constitutional principle of separation of church and state unlike Christian nationalists who are attempting to have the religious doctrine of a few enshrined as public policy for all to follow. For more on this movement that has shaped much of the political debate in recent decades, see - Kingdom Coming: The Rise of Christian Nationalism by Michelle Goldberg (New York: W. W. Norton & Co., 2007).

Don't Forget to Decline to Sign the Anti-Affirmative Action Petition -
but it's okay to sign the one to restore Medicaid

In the Jan. 21 newsletter, I let you know that Ward Connerly, a wealthy California political operative, is trying to amend Missouri’s Constitution and ban affirmative action in our state through an initiative petition. Petitioners will ask you to to sign a petition "for equality" or "for civil rights" but it's really about ending affirmative action, so DECLINE TO SIGN that petition. If you see someone at the polls
circulating it (probably a paid signature gatherer hired by an out-of-state company that specializes in such campaigns), please call Jobs with Justice at 314-644-0466 and let them know which polling place.

BUT you also may be approached by persons with petitions asking that the old Medicaid guidelines be reinstated so hundreds of thousands of Missourians will have healthcare benefits restored. I've signed that petition myself and urge you to do so as well.

Big Thanks for Thursday Night
With the major snow storm, we were afraid attendance might be low at "A Gathering of City Lovers: People who back the City and who back Jeanette Mott Oxford for State Representative," the Jan. 31 fundraiser and reception, but instead we had a large, energetic, and generous crowd.

Thanks to Philip Hitchcock and phd gallery at 2300 Cherokee for hosting the event. Additional host committee members were Anthony Coffin, Barb Moore, Ben Phillips, Beverly Cotton, Bill Hart, Bill Byrd, Chad Johnson, Connie Petty, Jason Deems, Jeannette Ward, Joan Briccetti, Julie Terbrock, Kathy Greminger, Lynn Josse, Mark Kalk, Mark Lammert, Michael Allen, Nancy Galvin, Norah Ryan, Pam Talley, Pamela Merritt, Shane Cohn, Sharon Hoffmann, Tony Pecinovsky, and Warren Hoffmann - I thank them profusely.

Steven Smith of The Royale bartended and offered a great drink menu. Food came from: Claralyn Bollinger, Café DeMenil, Helen Davis, Gast Haus, Barbara Greenberg, Jovanka Hammond, Lemp Mansion Restaurant, Mississippi Mud Coffee House, Patty Long’s, Shangri-La Diner, and Marilyn Stavenger.
All who enjoyed the beautiful and bountiful spread say Yum and Thanks.

It was a treat to have House colleagues Sam Page and Margaret Donnelly come by. They are on their way to bigger challenges and a chance to serve more Missourians. Page is running for lieutenant governor and Donnelly for attorney general, and they have my support! Sen. Jeff Smith also dropped by for a chat and to enjoy a cocktail that The Royale has named "The Mr. Smith."

If you meant to attend, but had to cancel due to weather, illness, etc., the financial books on the event will be open for a few days more, so please mail your check to Citizens to Elect Oxford, P. O. Box 19112, St. Louis, MO 63118. (Campaign finance limits ban donations of more than $325.)

Bills to Be Filed Next Week
I have been gathering co-sponsor signatures on bills about reducing class sizes, removing conflicts of interest at the metropolitan taxi commission, expanding earned income tax credits, protecting freedom of speech, offering progressive tax reform, and many more important issues.
I will be filing these bills in the next couple of weeks. Stay posted on bills I sponsor or co-sponsor by checking: