House Majority Floor Leader Dean Plocher said lawmakers should be focused on enacting policies that grow Missouri so the state can add congressional seats in the future as the redistricting process gets underway.
A tentative map unveiled by redistricting leaders in both chambers ahead of the new year would likely remain 6-2 favoring Republicans, instead of a 7-1 map some conservatives have advocated for. Plocher said while he’d prefer Missouri only be represented by Republicans in Congress, the “goal” is to “pass maps that make sense.”
“The problem with drawing maps, redrawing districts, we’ve got to etch out eight congressional districts. No one gets exactly what they want,” Plocher said. “We have to figure out how we construct maps that make the most sense for Missourians.”
“My goal is to protect Missourains’ God-given constitutional rights. But how that bill percolates through the system, and how that bill takes shape, is going to be for the body to participate in,” Plocher said. “And at some point too, how does the Senate work through that?”
Drama in the upper chamber
Sens. Denny Hoskins, Steven Roberts, and Barbara Washington joined Missouri Cattlemen’s Association executive vice president Mike Deering on this week’s panel to discuss redistricting and a new book about the women of the Senate.
Hoskins also discussed how session has gotten off to a shaky start with fighting already among conservatives and Republican leadership.
“As a senator, you’re only as good as a person of your word. We feel like we’ve had … disrespect, a lack of honesty, a lack of truthfulness by some of our Republican leadership when it’s comes to deals that were struck at the end of session, when it came to veto session,” Hoskins said, adding he does still believe there’s a path to reconciliation this session.
Washington unveiled a new book, “You Can, Too!” about the history of the women who have made up the Missouri state Senate. The women were recognized on the Senate floor last week.
“We were trying to come up with something that we could do collectively that would be bipartisan for an issue that we could all agree on, and we all agree on literacy,” Washington said. “We will take the book to all of the 34 Senate districts, and read the book, and give the book out to some schools.”