Thursday, July 15, 2010

Mr Purgason Goes to Jeff City

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington: Lost Causes

A seen similar to the one above unfolded in Jefferson City Wednesday morning.

Governor Jay Nixon (D-MO) called the legislature back for a special session. The focus of the session was a tax incentive bill that would only benefit Ford. State Senator Chuck Purgason (R-MO) opposed the bill. He argued that we should provide tax incentives for small businesses rather than Ford.

Purgason refused to pass the bill out of his committee effectively shutting down the special session. Senate President Pro Tem Charlie Shields (R-MO) removed Purgason and placed himself on the committee to move the bill to the floor.

Purgason filibustered the bill once the floor debate started. He asked supporters to email him and promised to read their emails on the Senate floor. Which he did, for 21 hours. According to Purgason's campaign website, 21 hours is the longest filibuster in at least fifteen years.

I was listening live this morning via the Internet feed (linked on MO Senate home page) when Purgason ended his filibuster. Then I saw Tony Messenger's tweet:
It's over. Sen @ChuckPurgason just tossed down his microphone, walked out of chamber, and ended filibuster.
There were at least two motivations for Purgason's filibuster. First, he's in an uphill battle for the Republican nomination for US Senate. The second reason is captured in this sentence from someone on Purgason's campaign:
The main problem is a misunderstanding of the role of government and the co-opting of state power for private profit -- mercantilism.
The filibuster was covered well on twitter. Afterwards, Ross Carter observed:
I noticed some funny hashtags for @ChuckPurgason's 20+ hour filibuster: #purgabuster #purgatory #chuckapocalypse #purgasonafterdark
Purgason returned to the campaign trail after the filibuster with multiple radio appearances.

1 comment:

spikestl said...

I Like #purgabuster