Thursday, November 29, 2012

Institute for Energy Research Requests Lisa Jackson Emails Sent Under "Richard Windsor" Alias

The non-partisan Institute for Energy Research (IER) has responded to the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) use of 'alias' email addresses by issuing a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for emails sent by EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson from her internal email account which is under the name "Richard Windsor". IER is seeking documents related to the Federal government's rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline.

In this video I speak with Dan Simmons of IER about the Keystone XL pipeline, the EPA's use of alias email addresses, and IER's FOIA request.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Spin Cycle on Overdrive: EPA Launders Fingerprints of Public Officials with "Richard Windsor" Account

The Politico reports on Lisa Jackson's 'Windsor' knot:
EPA officials say the agency wasn’t trying to hide anything by giving Administrator Lisa Jackson a secondary email address to use when corresponding with other government officials. 
But the name she chose to use — “Richard Windsor” — has triggered an inadvertent ruckus for an agency already under fire from conservatives. 
The name came from that of a family dog when Jackson lived in East Windsor Township, N.J., an EPA official said Tuesday.
Could someone in East Windsor Township, NJ, please ask Lisa Jackson's old neighbors what her dog's name was? Seriously, who the hell names their dog "Richard" and why would this country make that person Administrator of the EPA? I should start an office pool on what people think the canine Richard Windsor's middle name is going to turn out to be.

We'll come back to Richard Windsor, as we always do, but, first, that Politico article has this gem [emphasis added]:
The internal account exists so that Jackson’s communications with other government officials aren’t buried under the crush of emails flooding into her public account,, which got 1.5 million emails in fiscal year 2012, EPA says. The agency says such dual- account arrangements have been standard practice since the Clinton administration, when EPA Administrator Carol Browner was first assigned two email addresses.
How dare Politico besmirch the honor of former EPA Administrator Carol Browner by implying that she's a liar. You'll recall from the Daily Caller:
“You remember Ms. Browner, the lady who suddenly ordered her computer hard drive reformatted and backup tapes erased, hours after a federal court issued a ‘preserve’ order … that her lawyers at the Clinton Justice Department insisted they hadn’t yet told her about?” Horner told TheDC News Foundation. “The one who said it’s all good because she didn’t use her computer for email anyway? That one.” 
So during the Clinton administration Browner justified the destruction of public records by claiming that she didn't use her computer for government email and therefore no public records would be destroyed. Note that backup tapes were erased, too, so it stands to reason that Browner's claim was that not only did she not use her computer for email, but that she did not, in fact, use government email at all; hence, she was not, to her mind, ordering public records to be destroyed when she ordered her computer to be reformatted and, by implication, backup tapes to be destroyed. Yet, today we learn that she had a second, clandestine account.

What was the name on Carol Browner's sockpuppet email account?

I believe that the EPA's Richard Windsor account was created during the Clinton Administration. Was it used by Carol Browner? Was it used by George W. Bush's EPA Administrator? If not, then we have a dormant account that may have been available to political operatives and activists of the party out of power during the Bush presidency, if I'm right about the account having been created twelve or more years ago.

When was the EPA's "Richard Windsor" account created? Who was granted access to it? And when was each custodian granted that access?

Getting back to "Richard Windsor".... The Politico has implied that Lisa Jackson has claimed that she had a dog named "Richard" when she lived in East Windsor Township. The EPA acknowledges that there's a "Richard Windsor" account used by Lisa Jackson. Let's return to the dead Richard Windsor that I wrote about when first taking an interest in this story:
Richard Windsor was a Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) enforcement attorney who, in 1997, began working for Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). In an article announcing Windsor's new job staffing a PEER sponsored environmental hotline, he had this to say:
``Once upon a time, Florida [had] an environmental agency that tried to enforce environmental laws,'' Windsor said. ``That's not the case now.''
Windsor was an attorney in a court case in 2000 involving Florida's DEP. That same year, he corresponded with then EPA director Carol Browner. We know that because of footnote #39 on page 20 of a 2004 letter from Eric Huber of the Sierra Club addressed to Michael Leavitt of the EPA. We know that Richard L. Windsor was an attorney involved in a 2003 case involving Florida's DEP.

And, sadly, The Florida Bar News reported that Richard Lee Windsor shuffled off his mortal coil on December 7th, 2008.
It turns out that the deceased environmental lawyer, Richard Windsor, worked with Carol Browner when Browner was head of Environmental Regulation in Florida. The article about the PEER sponsored environmental hotline notes: "Windsor and Medina worked for 11 years as state regulators." So, Windsor would've worked at DEP from 1986 to 1997 (roughly). Browner was Secretary of Environmental Regulation for Florida from 1991 to 1993.

The deceased Windsor was involved in an environmental case documented in Don Corace's Government Pirates: The Assault on Private Property Rights--and How We Can Fight It.
During the trial, Ocie and his son were painted as dangerous criminals who ignored the goverment's cease-and-desist orders and knowingly polluted the nation's waters. Richard Windsor, an assistant general counsel for the DEP. even compared Ocie to Humpty-Dumpty who was known for creating his own version of reality. (pp 138-139)
Ocie Mills and his son, Casey, served terms in federal prison. In 1993 while trying to have the federal conviction removed from their records, a federal judge ruled that Ocie's property was "probably never a wetland for the purposes of the Clean Water Act." (Ibid. p 140).

In 1996 one of the jurors, Quentin Wise, contacted Ocie. The juror alleged that Ocie was railroaded:
...the jury foreman, Thomas J. Smith, had told jurors during the trial that his sons worked for the DEP, that he had learned that Ocie had threatened officers with a gun in the past, and portrayed him as a terrible polluter. Wise confessed that he and the other jurors had been intimidated by Smith and that they had agreed to convict Ocie and his son. (Ibid. pp 140-141.)
In short, the deceased Richard Windsor is a hero of enviro-fascists everywhere.

I said earlier that I believe that the EPA's Richard Windsor account was created during the Clinton Administration. I've shown that Clinton EPA Administrator Carol Browner would have known the deceased Richard Windsor. I've mentioned that Browner was once Secretary of Environmental Regulation for Florida. And, now, I'll note that she was Senator Al Gore's legislative director from 1988 to 1991. In fact, Wikipedia notes that Browner "became known as a Gore protégé."

With Al Gore's close loss in Florida in the 2000 Presidential election, is it that far-fetched to suspect that Browner had a clandestine email account setup for an activist environmental lawyer in Florida named Richard Windsor? The key questions that remain for the EPA:

When was the EPA's "Richard Windsor" account created? Who was granted access to it? And when was each custodian granted that access?

Update: Thanks to Instapundit for the link! Checkout my other coverage of this story especially my interview with Chris Horner of the Competitive Enterprise Institute who wrote The Liberal War on Transparency and got the ball rolling on this story. Please consider hitting my tip jar or buying one of the books mentioned here--that puts a little money in my pocket at no additional cost to you. Thanks!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Video: Christopher Horner on The Liberal War on Transparency

I spoke with Christopher Horner, author of The Liberal War on Transparency: Confessions of a Freedom of Information "Criminal", about EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson's efforts to thwart access to public records. Horner talks about the lawsuits that he and his employer, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), have filed because the EPA has not been responsive to their Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.

Horner has alleged that Lisa Jackson is using "alias" email addresses including one under the name "Richard Windsor". I ask him about the evidence he has to show that--two senior EPA employees are his sources.

Jackson has called Horner's FOIA requests "criminal". I ask Horner about that. We also discuss what Horner describes as "cyber bonfires". He alleges that the EPA has engaged in policies and practices that have led to the destruction of public records. He details some examples during this interview and refers to his recently released book, The Liberal War on Transparency, for additional examples.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Sockpuppeteer Lisa Jackson Must Go

Last May, the Washington Post reported on a flurry of emails between EPA officials who found themselves at odds with a White House policy:
An Aug. 30, 2011, e-mail exchange among Environmental Protection Agency officials, obtained by the Center for Progressive Reform under the Freedom of Information Act, provides a glimpse into how agency officials thought the White House failed to adequately capture their work on anti-pollution rules opposed by Republicans and industry officials.
That email exchange, which I've put on Scribd, is of interest because it includes emails from one "Richard Windsor". Multiple FOIA requests for Richard Windsor's emails have gone unanswered leading to lawsuits from the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI). Chris Horner of CEI took to the pages of National Review with the simple question: Who is Richard Windsor?
“Richard Windsor.” That is the name — sorry, one of the alias names — used by Obama’s radical EPA chief to keep her email from those who ask for it.
If Horner is correct, and I believe he is, then EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, has been using a sockpuppet email address at EPA. Sockpuppetry within a government agency subverts transparency since government records and documents that Jackson creates as "Richard Windsor" are not obviously connected to her. As such, FOIA requests for her work products are unlikely to catch such records.

EPA Email from Richard Windsor
Email internal to EPA sent by "Richard Windsor"
That has drawn the attention of the House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space, and Technology which issued a letter to Jackson this past Friday. That letter reads in part:
Unfortunately, time and again, actions by the Administration on transparency have fallen far short of the President's rhetoric, in many instances trending away from transparency and toward greater secrecy. I write you today regarding yet another troubling revelation - the use of private email and alias accounts to conduct official government business. I am concerned that this behavior appears to violate the Federal Records Act (FRA), and perhaps the Presidential Records Act (PRA), the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), as well as many other statutes designed to facilitate transparency and oversight.
Here's the screenplay of that EPA email exchange that the Washington Post reported on as it unfolded. Lisa Jackson is reading the lines of "Richard Windsor" in our little re-enactment--I've italicized her lines so they're easy to spot:
Betsaida Alcantara: This just went out, it focuses heavily on the executive order to reduce burdens of regulation.
Lisa Jackson: Did anyone get any heads up on this letter?
Bob Perciasepe: We did not get contacted
Daniel Kanninen: I have spoken with Chris Lu, who also was unaware of the letter and it's release prior to it going out the door.
He is following up with OIRA now. I made several points to him for that purpose. First, that we've spent a great deal of time and energy framing these rules with the public health and environmental benefits, and when and how they are driven by statutory, scientific and legal obligations, which this letter and appendix do not. And second, that in the interest of both accuracy and situational awareness tighter coordination would be been appreciated and in this case would have avoided a fairly significant error.
Chris found those to be compelling points and I'm sure will relay them to OIRA (Cass and/or Fitzpatrick was the inference), but I would certainly endorse relaying that message to others.
Lisa Jackson: Sorry. I haven't reviewed the POTUS letter carefully. What is the significant error?
Gina McCarthy: Quick look: The numbers in the appendix re: Ozone and MATS, are accurate, but approximate. Re: the Major Source Boilers, looks like they pulled the $3 billion from the April 2010 proposal, which is accurate, but we finalized (and immediately reconsidered) a significantly less costly boiler rule in February 2011 ($1.4 billion).
It's pretty clear from that exchange who's in charge: the Richard Windsor stand-in, Lisa Jackson.

Two final points about "Richard Windsor". First, email sent to does not bounce as of Saturday (11/17/2012) evening. That means that the Richard Windsor email account is active and that suggests that Windsor is an employee of the EPA. That brings us to the second point.

The EPA does not have any employees with the last name "Windsor". None. You can go check for yourself on the agency's "Locate an EPA Employee" page. A search for Lisa Jackson returns a page like the one below; however, I get "no records found" when searching for "Windsor"

For subverting government transparency within the Environmental Protection Agency, Lisa Jackson must either resign or be fired. She has to go.

Friday, November 16, 2012

America's Privileged Class of Administrators

Citizens Against Government Waste produced the video above to accompany their recent issue brief: Public Servants or Privileged Class: How State Government Employees are Paid Better than Their Private-Sector Counterparts. While that policy paper focuses on state employee salaries, federal employees do quite well, too. For instance, the EPA has an opening for Deputy Director, Office of Information Collection, with a salary range from $120k to $180k.

The Office of Information Collection (OIC) is within the EPA's Office of Environmental Information (OEI). The $180k/yr Deputy Director would work for the Director of OIC (Andrew Battin) who in turn answers to OEI's Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator (Renee P. Wynn) and/or OEI's Assistant Administrator and Chief Information Officer (Malcolm Jackson). The Office of the Administrator has ultimate oversight--Deputy Administrator (Bob Perciasepe) and Administrator (Lisa Jackson). With benefits, that chain of command must cost taxpayers a million dollars annually.

Lisa Jackson: Working the EPA's Graveyard Shift

Earlier this week The Daily Caller reported that EPA chief, Lisa Jackson, used an 'alias' email account:
The name Richard Windsor may sound innocuous, but it is allegedly one of the secret “alias” email accounts used by Obama EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson.
Remember that name: Richard Windsor.

The Daily Caller continues:
“That is the name — sorry, one of the alias names — used by Obama’s radical EPA chief to keep her email from those who ask for it,” Chris Horner, senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute and author of the new book “The Liberal War on on Transparency,” told the Daily Caller News Foundation in an email.
Just one? Richard Windsor is just one of the aliases used by Lisa Jackson!? A member of President Obama's administration commands a squad of sock-puppet email addresses. It's like JournoList meets the West Wing.

And this is not the first time that the EPA has had issues with transparency. During the Clinton administration, EPA chief Carol Browner had her computer hard drive reformatted and ordered backup tapes to be erased at the same time a federal court ordered her to preserve that data.

Government transparency advocate, Chris Horner of the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) filed a lawsuit in September over Jackson's use of secret email accounts (court filing). The suit seeks to compel the EPA to comply with FOIA requests about those accounts; however, the EPA continues to stonewall.

Over at National Review, Horner has raised the question: Who is ‘Richard Windsor’?
Ms. Jackson is the “eco-warrior”, “most progressive EPA chief in history” — pushing Obama’s backdoor march (other ways “of skinning the cat”) toward cap-and-trade. 
Or, as you may come to know her, “Richard Windsor.”
While today "Richard Windsor" may be the sock-puppet of EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, I think a related question is in order: Who was Richard Windsor?

Richard Windsor was a Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) enforcement attorney who, in 1997, began working for Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). In an article announcing Windsor's new job staffing a PEER sponsored environmental hotline, he had this to say:
``Once upon a time, Florida [had] an environmental agency that tried to enforce environmental laws,'' Windsor said. ``That's not the case now.''
Windsor was an attorney in a court case in 2000 involving Florida's DEP. That same year, he corresponded with then EPA director Carol Browner. We know that because of footnote #39 on page 20 of a 2004 letter from Eric Huber of the Sierra Club addressed to Michael Leavitt of the EPA. We know that Richard L. Windsor was an attorney involved in a 2003 case involving Florida's DEP.

And, sadly, The Florida Bar News reported that Richard Lee Windsor shuffled off his mortal coil on December 7th, 2008.

Can't an environmental lawyer be left to feed the tree in peace? Seriously, why is a member of President Obama's administration, Lisa Jackson, leveraging the credibility of a deceased environmental lawyer, credibility that Richard Windsor accrued over a lifetime, to further her own agenda?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Drones for Journalism: Traffic Reporters Hardest Hit

The Columbia Missourian reports on a grant awarded to research drones as reporting tools:
Journalists may soon be able to report from new heights, thanks to drones. 
The small, flying robots are being explored as tools for reporting from the air. Scott Pham, content director for KBIA/91.3 FM, has received a $25,000 grant from the MU Interdisciplinary Innovations Fund to develop drones for journalism use.
The research will look at using drones to report on wild fires and natural disasters, but the single most lucrative application of drones in journalism would be to replace rush-hour traffic reporters flying around in helicopters with an unmanned aerial vehicle like the Global Hawk pictured above. That's never mentioned in the article, which focus on incorporating much smaller and commercially available drones like the Parrot Quadricopter available from Amazon; however, the post does imply that there are some regulatory hurdles that must be overcome before traffic reporters find themselves behind a desk remotely controlling traffic drones:
The flying robots won't be hovering over residential areas anytime soon, though. Restrictions include flying under 400 feet and away from airports and other populated areas.
Local ordinances will have to be adjusted to facilitate this innovation.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Election Night Watch Party Photos

Photos from the Dave Spence and Ed Martin watch parties in the St. Louis area.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

#MOAG: Ed Martin Votes in South St. Louis City

Ed Martin, Republican candidate for Attorney General of Missouri, and his wife, Carol, voted in south St. Louis city this morning. After voting, Martin, took a couple of questions. First, he explained the role of Attorney General. Next he provided details for his election night watch party at the Drury Inn on Hampton near 44.

Here are some photos from Ed Martin's visit to the polls this morning:

Monday, November 5, 2012

#MOAG: Ed Martin on the 2nd Amendment

Ed Martin, Republican candidate for Attorney General of Missouri, talks about 2nd Amendment issues and endorsements ahead of Tuesday's election. Martin's opponent, Chris Koster, was endorsed by the NRA despite the fact that both Martin and Koster received the same "A" rating from the group. When two candidates earn the same rating, the NRA has a policy of endorsing the incumbent.

Martin was endorsed by another 2nd Amendment group, the Gun Owners of America (GOA). In their statement endorsing Martin, GOA said:
Gun Owners of America Political Victory Fund is proud to endorse Ed Martin for Attorney General. 
Ed Martin is a strong supporter of the Second Amendment who is dedicated to protecting the rights of Missouri’s gun owners. 
As state Attorney General, Ed will stand against unconstitutional intrusions of the federal government. He understands that the U.S Constitution is a check federal power—not a grant of unlimited authority.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

In the Fight: Episode 68

Episode 68 of In The Fight produced by the Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System. Here's their description of this half-hour show:
On this episode, service members head home after their final deployment to Afghanistan, a new Afghan organization looks to rid corruption from within its ranks, we meet a team tasked with responding to crises at American embassies, a group of combat engineers find themselves between a rock and a hard place, and an annual event aims to assist local veterans in need.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Jay Nixon's Failed Policies Led to Mamtek

Dave Spence is the Republican candidate for Governor in Missouri. He's running against 26 year career politician and current Governor, Jay Nixon. Spence is critical of Jay Nixon's failed leadership. One example Spence gives in the video is Missouri's Department of Economic Development (DED) and especially the role DED played in the Mamtek-Moberly debacle:
Mamtek received $39 million in industrial development bonds from Moberly and authorization for up to $17 million of state incentives to build an artificial sweetener plant in the central Missouri city about 30 miles north of Columbia. Construction was halted on the partially completed facility after the company missed a bond payment in August 2011.

Bruce Cole, the chairman and CEO of Mamtek, has been charged with theft and securities fraud and is accused of using bond revenues to avoid foreclosure on his home in Beverly Hills, Calif. The federal Securities Exchange Commission also has filed a lawsuit against Cole seeking financial penalties. Last week, the remaining assets for the plant were sold at auction by UMB Bank, the trustee for bondholders.

Nixon's administration frequently has said no state incentives were paid to Mamtek, but Spence countered that the state incentives helped prompt Moberly to issue its bonds.
In the video, Spence then talks about the role that government should play. As someone who turned a small business into a multi-million dollar operation, Spence believes that government has to have small business owners back by reducing the red-tape and creating an environment that encourages business in Missouri.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

#MOSen: Claire McCaskill's backdoor support for Cap and Trade

While campaigning in south St. Louis county, Todd Akin explained how Claire McCaskill supported cap and trade. While it's true she did not vote for the cap and trade legislation introduced in 2009, she did vote for it in 2008.

More recently, she voted to grant authority to the EPA to regulate carbon emissions. That effectively allows the EPA to implement cap and trade and other policies that will increase the cost of energy. As Americans for Tax Reform wrote the other day:
She supported the Administration’s efforts to classify carbon dioxide as a pollutant, and voted over and over against amendments to block the EPA from regulating CO2 and other greenhouse gases. Even the Missouri AFL-CIO president said these EPA regulations “will both threaten jobs and increase costs on energy consumers in Missouri.” Bear in mind, humans exhale carbon dioxide. From an economic standpoint, this policy is devastating – St. Louis’ Meramec power plant is older, and is likely to close because of these policies.
Claire McCaskill supports the same policies of Barack Obama under which the price of energy derived from coal, oil, and natural gass will necessarily sky rocket.

#MOGov: Dave Spence Speaks in North St. Louis

IMG_1918Both of Missouri's gubernatorial candidates were invited to speak at Greater Bethlehem Baptist Church in north St. Louis earlier this week. Incumbent Democrat Jay Nixon was a no show, but Republican challenger Dave Spence was there. The ten minute video above is of Spence's prepared remarks. He also answered questions submitted by the audience.

The full play list from this event is available on YouTube. Prior to Dave Spence's remarks, Stephanie Patton and Dr. Lance McCarthy also spoke. Spence also answered questions submitted by the audience.

#MOSen: New Todd Akin Ad Features Rape Victim

Republican Todd Akin is out with a new ad featuring a supporter who says she had an abortion after being raped (h/t: Politico). Akin faces Democrat Claire McCaskill in Tuesday's election for US Senator from Missouri.

#MOSen: Now or Never PAC Advertises for Akin

The Hill reports that a GOP super-PAC, Now or Never PAC, is supporting Todd Akin:
A Republican super-PAC that had backed one of Rep. Todd Akin's (R-Mo.) primary opponents will jump in to help the embattled Senate candidate in the final week of his campaign. 
Now Or Never PAC will spend $800,000 on television advertising for the cash-strapped Akin between now and Election Day, spokesman Tyler Harber told The Hill.

Stephanie Patton in Her Own Words

Stephanie Patton in her own words

Tuesday evening, there was a "debate" between Republican candidate for governor Dave Spence and incumbent Democrat, Gov. Jay Nixon, at Greater Bethlehem Baptist Church in north St. Louis. Nixon didn't show up. Spence was there with his campaign message and to take questions from the predominantly black audience. I will post video of his remarks later.


A couple of Spence's supporters spoke Tuesday evening including Stephanie Patton who is featured in the video at the top of this post. Stephanie recently appeared in a Dave Spence TV ad. I've covered her story on this blog:
The Spence ad has drawn criticism from the St. Louis Post Dispatch's Tony Messenger:
In the ad, an African-American woman who used to own an adult day care business tells how a state worker berated her and hurled a racial epithet at her during an inspection. One problem: Mr. Spence’s opponent, Gov. Jay Nixon, wasn’t even governor when the alleged incident, outlined in a lawsuit, even occurred.
One of the most salacious aspects of Stephanie's story was the October 2008 inspection in which DHSS inspector, Cassie Blum, hit Patton and called her the n-word; however, those actions alone did not lead to the closure of Patton's business. They do beg the question: why does Cassie Blum still have a job?

The Court of Appeals for the Western District noted in their September 25th, 2012, opinion that DSS dragged their feet communicating with Stephanie [emphasis added]:
As a result of Peace of Mind's failure to maintain a medical model license, DSS terminated Peace of Mind's participation in the MO HealthNet program effective on the close of business of December 20, 2008, and stopped making payments to Peace of Mind. DSS informed Patton of its decision in a letter dated February 2, 2009.
The state of Missouri cut off Stephanie's funding and waited a month and a half to tell her. She had expenses for client care, rent, payroll, utilities, but was not compensated. The trial, circuit, and appeals courts all found that she was due $45,340, yet she has still not been reimbursed.

Stephanie tried to re-open her adult day care business in April of 2009. She incurred some expenses, but then the state refused to let her bill for clients. The simple fact is that Missouri's bureaucracy prevented her from working.

On multiple occasions Stephanie has tried to meet with the Gov Nixon. He's refused to meet with her. So a small Medicaid provider like Stephanie gets run out of business, while Centene Corporation with its $66,500 in donations to Jay Nixon's gubernatorial campaign gets a $1.1 billion contract.

Since the 2008 inspection with Blum, Stephanie has lost her business, her car, her home, and suffered immeasurable emotional anguish, but the Governor refuses to meet with her. The courts have ruled, so why won't the state make Stephanie whole?

Update: Stephanie's story still hurts when she re-tells it as can be seen in the video above. When I spoke with her Wednesday, she commented that she didn't think she could get through the second part of her story, so she didn't even bring it up Tuesday night.

That part begins in January of 2011 just a couple months after the Administrative Hearing Court (AHC) had ruled in her favor in October of 2010. Stephanie knew her AHC case would have to wind its way through the appeals process, but she did not anticipate criminal charges from Attorney General Chris Koster.

Koster's office alleged that $1500 in Medicaid payments that Missouri had made to Stephanie constituted theft on Stephanie's part. The county prosecutor represents the AG in criminal cases like this here in Missouri. After gathering the facts of Koster's criminal complaint against Stephanie, the St. Louis county prosecutor asked the judge to dismiss it.

Nonetheless, the criminal complaint had numerous side-effects. First, a warrant was issued for Stephanie's arrest, so she had to make bail and spend a few hours in jail. She couldn't find work even at a dry cleaners or convenience store because there was a criminal charge of theft against her. She had a few months of stress, to say nothing of the emotional toll, as a result of the criminal charge.

And, even after the charges were dropped, Stephanie was still marked in DHSS/DSS's computer systems. When she interviewed for jobs in the healthcare industry and, despite her record of having run an adult day care facility for eighteen years, she would be turned down because the computer system said she was ineligible for work in the healthcare field. Missouri's AG and the DHSS/DSS bureaucracy had made it illegal for her to work.

Stephanie was the collateral damage of a frivolous and, I believe, vindictive prosecution initiated by AG Chris Koster.

Throughout all of that, Stephanie tried to arrange a meeting with Gov. Nixon. With an out-of-control Attorney General, who else could she appeal to? All she wanted to do was petition the government for a redress of grievances, but Nixon's office repeatedly stonewalled and re-buffed her.

Stephanie Patton is one reason why you should vote against both Nixon and Koster next Tuesday. Dave Spence and Ed Martin simply have to be better.