The Missouri Senate Primary from Hell, 2022

Republican Senator Roy Blunt is retiring after his current term, which ends in January 2023. This leaves an open seat. There are three declared candidates so far, all running for the Republican nomination:

Mark McCloskey. You must remember Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the gun-totin’ St. Louis wackadoos who became sweethearts of the Right for threatening to shoot peaceful Black Lives Matter protesters. The allegedly male half of the pair has declared his candidacy for Roy Blunt’s seat. Here is his pitch:

Of course, there was no “mob” coming to destroy McCloskey’s home or kill his family. But what are facts when you’re defending FREEDUMB?!

McCloskey is a personal injury lawyer who is famous for suing everyone who crosses his path, including his own relatives. Yes, bad judgment, anger issues, and avarice are just what we need in a senator. See also Elliott Hannon, Slate, Mark McCloskey Announces Senate Run Touting Experience as Man in Video Pointing a Rifle at Passersby and Greg Sargent, WaPo, Meet the perfect Senate candidate for today’s Trumpified GOP.

Mark McCloskey shows off his statesmanship skills.

Eric Greitens. You might also remember former Gov. Eric Greitens. In 2018 Greitens resigned in order to avoid turning over documents from his dark money political organization to a House committee looking into impeachment charges. See Bad Coverage of Greitens Resignation for the whole story.

Greitens is a former Navy SEAL who ran for the governor’s office by highlighting his skill at destroying innocent vegetation with various military-style weapons. Because of course that’s an essential skill for a governor. Oh, and the best part is that he’s already hired the Crazy Screaming Lady, Kimberly Guilfoyle, as his campaign manager.

Eric Schmitt. And finally we have Eric Schmitt, currently serving at state attorney general. At least he has some experience in government. However, Schmitt might be the hinkiest specimen of the lot.

You might remember last December, when the Texas attorney general, Ken Paxton, filed a lawsuit challenging the presidential election results in Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. You might remember that several other state attorneys general joined the suit. What you might not know, but has since been reported by the St. Louis Post Dispatch (article is behind a paywall, sorry), is that Schmitt was behind getting those other attorneys general to sign amicus briefs on behalf of Paxton’s suit. Shortly after Paxton filed his suit, Schmitt’s top aide sent emails to other Republican AGs urging them to join in. This is from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch story:

The records themselves show, he says, that the attorneys general knew they were engaged in a political fraud, and that’s damaging for the future of democracy. In one email, for instance, an aide to North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem makes it clear the amicus brief has little basis in law. “The decision whether we join this amicus is more political than it is legal,” wrote the aide.

(“He” is Jon Western, a political science prof investigating the suit. Schmitt refused to comply with state sunshine laws to provide copies of the emails, but Western was able to get them from another state.)

But Schmitt has a record of filing bizarre lawsuits. Last year he sued China, three government ministries, two local governments, two laboratories and the Chinese Communist Party in U.S. District Court for China’s failure to contain the coronavirus. The suit, which might generously be called “judicial theater,” is still being pursued as far as I can tell.

He’s filed suits against the Biden Administration already. One challenged President Biden’s Mexican border policy, although Missouri doesn’t border Mexico. He also sued the Biden Administration over oil and gas leasing regulations. Most recently he sued the St. Louis County Executive, Dr. Sam Page (a physician), over county covid health orders. The county still had some mask mandates and limits on social gatherings (this was before the recent change in recommendations from the CDC), and Schmitt didn’t believe the county should be allowed to do such things. So he sued, but weirdly forgot to sign the paper filed in court, so the county just ignored it. Well, except to issue the following statement:

“We all know Mr. Schmitt is trying to increase his profile statewide and suing those protecting the health and safety of residents is apparently one of the ways he has chosen to do that. Our focus is on getting people vaccinated and on economic recovery.

“Litigation around public health orders across the country is nothing new and St. Louis County has been successful in defending every legal challenge around public health orders. Our legal foundation is sound.”

That’s about right. It’s all about Schmitt getting attention. What else he does as AG, if anything, I’m not sure.

Those are the three for sure candidates. Some other Missouri Republicans have made the trip to Mar-a-Lago to get Trump’s blessing. None of the other names that have been named as possible Republican candidates are any less nutso that the three in the race so far.

What about Democrats? Claire McCaskill has already said she has no intention of running again. Former governor Jay Nixon is a possibility. You can read about the other possibilities here. None are anywhere close to being as well known as the Republican candidates.

11 thoughts on “The Missouri Senate Primary from Hell, 2022

  1. It looks to me as if "The Show Me State" is looking to become "The Show-off For tRUMP State!"

    I'd be very afraid for the future of democracy in this country if I still had much hope for the future of democracy here and abroad.

    Unless there's some apocryphal event soon, like the RepubliKKKLAN Party's unlikely complete retreat from tRUMPism, or tRUMP dying of natural causes, it looks like rocky roads ahead for normal folks in '22 & '24.  Btw:  it doesn't matters how tRUMP dies, his apostles and followers will claim the "Deep State" assassinated him, and make him into a martyr.

    And then future generations in the "United In tRUMP and Christ States of AmeriKKKa" will wear a diamond-encrusted platinum "T" around their necks – exactly like Christians do with the cross today.

    Besides Nixon, maha, are there any other Democrats who can put up a good fight?

    • I'm hopeful Trump will be going to jail. Southern District of NY and the NY State Atty General have opened a criminal investigation. They have his tax records, and I'm certain are flipping people within the Trump mafia.

      On the one hand, it will turn him into a martyr. On the other, some Rs will return to sanity if "the don" is put away.

    • I honestly can't think of a Democrat who stands out as a strong candidate. That doesn't mean there aren't good Democrats, but they've been so beaten up in recent elections (see example) they're all kind of damaged. 

  2. Made for TV debate event:

    The three gun-totin' candidates can form a circle and have a truel like in The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly. The"winner" can ride off into the sunset, hopefully never to return.  

  3. This is the kind of story that makes me thankful for my current situation, no matter how sorry it may seem. Missouri seems full of angry white people. 

  4. I guess Kyle Rittenhouse wasn't available to run.

    Garbage ideologies choose garbage leaders.

    • I think you have to be 21 to run for Governor. Aside from that, they took away his AR-15. How can anyone run for Governor of Missouri without an AR-15?

  5. McCloskey went overboard stereotyping what he thinks Missouri males are supposed be like.  Wearing the plaid flannel shirt, the jeans, the Christian cross necklace, while toting bales of hay and driving ford pickup truck. The only thing he forgot was to style his hairdo into a mullet.

    You couldn't cram more stereotyped Americana into his political ad if you tired. Even the fonts he used in the lettering were reminiscent of American advertising in the 1890's.

    The sad part is that in spite of his uncreative political pandering he'll end up making money in milking the rubes.

  6. Wave guns around, say racist stuff, repeat the lies and declare Trump the greatest president in history who was cheated out of what would have been a glorious second term, and you've paid the entry fee to the GOP on ramp to congress.  The bar for the GOP is so low now that effectively we've already been reduced to one political party when it comes to getting stuff done.  If the democrats don't come up with solutions for what ails the country, it just won't happen.  Republicans are either so intellectually deficient, morally bankrupt and/or inherently dishonest they're literally incapable of producing any policy ideas that effectively address real issues. 

  7. The auction is not over.  It hasn't even properly started.  The bidders are just glancing over the lot descriptions in the catalogue.  Winning bids will be very, very high — higher than ever before.

  8. By most measures Missouri seems content to be close to, but slightly superior to, Mississippi.  The controlling monied elite are staging a contest among the gun toting lunatic fringe of the Republican party for governor and potential breeding rights.

    Having spent some years on the western edge of and in Missouri at times this seems close to Missouri as usual to me,  We always wish a little better for them, and try to show them a better, middle path.  I fear they model  Arkansas a bit too much,  Are they Huck-a-wanna-bees? 


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