Gov. Jay Nixon will be giving his State of the State address tonight. Here are some questions we are hearing in anticipation of the speech.
1. Right-to-Work. Will the Governor mention it? And if so, what will he say?
-Republicans in the House have vowed to make this a priority while senate support seems lackluster. Will Gov. Nixon address the issue he has promised to veto? Will he call on Democrats to fight the issue?
2. Will Gov. Nixon once again promise to put campaign finance reform on the ballot?
-Last year, Nixon said if the legislature failed to act he would push for a ballot measure on some form of campaign finance reform. Will he reiterate his support? Will he mention Secretary of State Jason Kander’s recent ethics proposal?
3. Will Gov. Nixon commit to releasing the $13 million in funds for the LIHTC? And what will he say about the future of historic and low-income housing tax credit?
-Nixon privately promised the black caucus he would release the funds — withheld as part of a deal with Senate Republicans to secure the passage of the Boeing package — in March. Will he discuss the deal? There are whispers that Nixon has major plans for the state tax credit programs. Will we hear about those plans tonight?
4. Will the governor adopt a more compromising, welcoming tone, or will he present himself as a confrontational force to the legislature?
-Nixon has been the open, negotiating leader (on the Boeing deal, for instance) and a vicious, aggressive enemy (tax cut veto). Which will we see tonight?
5. Will we see 2012 campaign trail Gov. Nixon, or summer 2013 Nixon?
-Nixon tacked toward moderation during his 2012 campaign, often presenting himself as the most moderate of Democrats. Since his re-election, he’s vetoed a tax cut, announced same-sex marriage tax filing recognition and supported Medicaid expansion. Which Nixon will give tonight’s speech? More simply, will Nixon mention the one name he avoided during his re-election: Obama.