Monday, July 31, 2006


The superintendent of the Springfield Public Schools -- and the president of the school board -- both contributed money to the campaign of Rep. Charlie Denison. The contributions were made one day after a fundraiser that Denison wrongly claimed the school district was co-hosting for him.

The Republican lawmaker's contributions are found in his latest campaign finance disclosure form. It shows Denison raised $11,400 in the last couple weeks, bringing his total to $35,761. He's spent $23,200. He reports cash on hand of $15,537.

Funny thing about these contributions:

•Dr. and Mrs. Michael D. Hoeman contributed $325 on July 7.
•On the same day, Norman and Nadine Ridder contributed $200.

Hoeman is president of the school board. Ridder is the superintendent.

Denison has an opponent in the August primary. David Dunn's eight-days-prior report hasn't yet been filed but is due by Monday night. His previously filed reports do not list contributions from Hoeman or Ridder.

Neither Hoeman nor Ridder contributed money to Nancy Hagan, the lone Democrat in the race for representative of the 135th District, according to campaign finance reports.


Anonymous said...

Well, for starters, Mr. Denison claimed he was going to raise $16,000 at that fundraiser alone.

Well, who was it that said to follow the money? The smell is becoming overpowering.

Dave Dunn may be outspent in this race, but he is on message, on target, and most importantly, on the streets knocking on doors where it counts.

Tim Trower

Anonymous said...

That's almost as bad as CU Twitty's political fundraising shenanigans.

Too bad when educators can't support a pol who can at least spell and write a coherent sentence.

Anonymous said...

Why shouldn't Joe and/or Jane Citizen be allowed to contribute to a candidate's campaign? What is wrong with the school board president and the superintendent, as private citizens, giving money to a campaign?

I recognize the "appearance" of impropriety. But I don't understand the uproar over this. Are we saying these people should not vote?

Perhaps I'm missing something, but I don't see anything wrong with any of this. The school district did not contribute money. Citizens did. Where would you draw the line? Should every business owner NOT contribute to a campaign? Only elected officials? Only public employees?

Anonymous said...

After all of the fuss and feathers of Charlie trying to claim that no, the School Board wasn't hosting this party -- the two top dogs in the SPS show up and contribute heavily. It just proves the point that I made earlier on my blog ( ) that Charlie DID intend to imply that SPS was a host.

Tim Trower

Anonymous said...

"contribute heavily"? I don't earn anywhere near what the superintendent does, but I could scrape together a couple hundred dollars for someone I support.

Denison sounds like an idiot, and the invitation for that event was certainly wrong, but I'm not seeing what the big deal is here. Individuals have the right to make personal contributions. We have a right to know who is making those contributions, as well. But I don't think there is some grand conspiracy here.

Anonymous said...

I understand the fuss over the Denison fundraiser story... but the bigger issue in my mind is John Twitty's involvement with Dan Scott (137th District). According the City Charter, if Twitty solicited money, he must be terminated and cannot be rehired!

Anonymous said...

As long as no public money went to Denison -who cares? Tim Trower is known as someone who likes to be in the middle of it all without having the balls to run on his own. Why is his name always in the middle of every Republican controversy? Or is he the next Larry Russell?

Anonymous said...

Tim Trower (me) ran and took early retirement in the Republican Primary in 1994 for the 136th House seat. Having done so, the desire to run is gone -- but not the willingness to help candidates.

Now, sir or madame, the slur about "the next Larry Russell" is completely out of bounds. I don't expect an apology from someone who doesn't have the guts to sign his or her name, but that is bordering on slander.

Is my name in the middle of the Helms/Goodart mess? or the Viebrock/Collins flap? I just happen to know the character of Charles Wayne Denison, and it is not good, nor do I feel that he fit to hold elective office.

Talk about broad generalizations. Sheesh.

But let's talk about the money that Denison has been taking. Yesterday I discovered that on five seperate occasions in the last two months, Denison has accepted illegal campaign donations -- including money from a lobbyist.

The details and amounts are as follows:

Burch & Associates: 8-22-05 for $150.00 and 7-13-06 for $325.00. Over limit by $150.00.

Missouri Optometric PAC: 8-22-05 for $200.00 and 7-13-06 for $325.00. Over limit by $200.00.

Larry E. Clayton: 1-20-06 for $200.00 and 7-17-06 for $200.00. Over limit by $75.00.

Bob Scheid: 8-18-05 for $200.00 and 7-13-06 for $325.00. Over limit by $200.00.

Ed Pinegar: 8-12-05 for $250.00 and 7-13-06 for $325.00. Over limit by $250.00.

Okay, a couple of observations. Four years ago, when I discovered that Ed Pinegar had given well in excess of the legal limit to David Coonrod, Charlie Denison was ecstatic. He couldn't wait until I had filed an ethics complaint about this over limit donation. (Shoe's on the other foot now, eh, Charlie?)

Also, Burch & Associates is a lobbying firm whose partner, Scott Marrs, shepherded Charlie around the ball game in St. Louis the night of April 4th -- during which time Charlie admitted missing 24 roll call votes. Marrs has donated both through his company and personally and kept it legal; not so for his partner.

Again, Anonymous, if I post something, I can back it up. Can you?

Anonymous said...

What is the status of the Twitty issue? Is someone investigating it?