Press "Enter" to skip to content

Former lieutenant governor on Limbaugh: ‘We’re saying goodbye to a great American’


As America remembers Missouri native Rush Limbaugh after his passing last week, former Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder recalled the conservative radio host’s impact on the landscape of politics. 

“We’re saying goodbye to a great American, a patriot, an extraordinarily generous philanthropist,” Kinder said, calling Limbaugh “the Johnny Carson of AM talk radio.” 

“They all said, ‘You can’t attract an audience, you can’t attract the number of stations you need, you can’t have a show without guests,’ and one-by-one Rush burst through all those can’ts — reinvented, revivified, reignited the medium and conservative movement and transformed America in many ways,” he continued.

Kinder appeared on Sunday’s episode of “This Week in Missouri Politics” to discuss Limbaugh’s legacy, as well as changes in the statehouse since his time on the dais and the priorities of the legislature this year. Kinder, who was in the upper chamber when Missouri’s charter school law was passed, said the debate was one of the most important topics on deck this year.

“I think that parents need more choices,” he said. “I do not believe that a one-size-fits-all public education system designed 150 years ago for an agrarian society is going to cut it in the 21st century, so I say let 1,000 flowers bloom. … I would argue that this is the first truly accountable public school; if they fail — and some of them have failed, there have been some crooks operating some of them — we pull the charter, and they go out of the business.”

Local control

State Reps. Tom Hannegan and Bridget Walsh Moore joined this week’s panel alongside Atlas Strategies’ Gregg Keller and St. Louis Alderman Tom Oldenburg. The group discussed charter schools, the COVID-19 vaccine, and legislation meant to limit the power of local health officials.

“I think the start is you need to listen to your local health directors and your health commissioners and the experts that live and breathe in these communities,” Oldenburg said. “There’s likely going to be some pushback from those local officials depending on which way this goes, and I think that ought to be paid attention to.”

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Bill Onder, would restrict local governments from imposing shutdowns lasting more than 15 days and would prohibit them from restricting the number of people on residential property during a public health emergency. The Senate laid the bill over after an evening of debate earlier this month.

The bill is primarily a response to health orders enacted by St. Louis County Executive Dr. Sam Page. Keller said the bill would limit the reach of officials, including Page and St. Louis County Council Chairwoman Lisa Clancy. 

“I think following the directions of local health authorities is all fine and well, so long as those local health authorities actually know what the heck they’re talking about,” Keller said. “What we’ve seen with Sam Page and Lisa Clancy is that they have no idea what they are doing.”  

Watch the full episode of “This Week in Missouri Politics” below, or listen to the podcast version here.