The MO State Auditor Race…Heating Up Fast

Auditor Race 2(Pictured left-to-right: Rep. Allen Icet, Susan Montee and Thomas Schweich)

The 2010 senate races have already begun to gain an enormous amount of attention. Across the nation, predictions for the most exciting, the most probable and the most scandalous races have begun. To no surprise, the majority of the political forecasts list Missouri’s senate races as “toss-ups”, including The Cook Political Report’s, Congressional Quarterly’s, The Rothenberg Political Report’s, Campaign Diaries’ and the Swing State Project’s.

Ironically, one of the least covered 2010 races is one of the most intrinsic to the wellbeing of the state: the state auditor. Yet, this race is quickly becoming one of the most interesting contests.
And the announced contestants (as of July 10) are: Representative Allen Icet, Thomas Schweich (rhymes with bike) and Susan Montee, the current State Auditor.

The standout, but term limited Chairman of the House Budget Committee for the last five years, Allen Icet, poses a significant threat to anyone running for the auditor position. Icet was the first to announce his candidacy and has done the most on the campaign trail in comparison to his competitors. Earlier this week, he released his impressive list of 84 endorsements, including 80 state representatives and 4 senators.

Thomas Schweich, the former Special Ambassador to Afghanistan for the George W. Bush administration, unofficially announced his bid unconventionally from a Washington University (Saint Louis) locker room. His official announcement was on July 7 in a statewide fly around with nominal support attending. He has been referenced for having Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder, Rep. Roy Blunt, Sen. John Danforth and Sen. Kit Bond’s encouragement to run for the position in an exchange for his absence to run for the open senate seat, the office Schweich had been eyeing for a long time.

Apart from his entry into the race, Schweich has remained extremely vague in his interviews and continually has not disclosed accountability information, such as whose plane he was flying in and who was traveling with him.

Current State Auditor Susan Montee, the only Democrat thus far to file with the state Ethics Commission for the position, was rumored to have had her eyes set on auditing at the federal level, but has apparently decided to remain in the realm of state politics, at least for the time being. She thus far has not posted anything on her website, despite having a bold advertisement on the Missouri Democrat’s homepage.

Thus far Icet has been the only candidate that seems truly aggressive in running for the state auditor slot. This aggressiveness early on could go a long way in proving to the people his passion for public service and his ability to hold government accountable. While the primary is still a long way off, the other two candidates’ campaign progress has been slow at best, and the public continues to wait for clues into these other distinct identities that would make them capable of holding the state auditor’s position.

To find out more information about the role of the State Auditor, click here.

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~ by Blogger007 on July 10, 2009.

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