How Some State Politicians Are Using Government to Threaten Free Speech

co-written with Dan Caldwell, Director of Policy of Concerned Veterans for America

When it comes to threatening the free speech rights of American citizens, progressives have largely been the culprits at the federal level.

Yet increasingly, Republican state legislators have taken up this crusade.

Last month, New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez rightly vetoed a Republican-supported bill that would have forced nonprofits to disclose their supporters’ personal information, saying it would “likely discourage charities and other groups that are primarily non-political from advocating for their cause.”

Now, New Mexico’s Democratic secretary of state might impose the same disclosure requirements through campaign finance rules she plans to unveil later this year.

Americans for Prosperity Foundation Announces Six-Figure Right-To-Work Issue Education Effort

St. Louis, MO – Today, the Missouri chapter of Americans for Prosperity Foundation (AFP-Foundation) announced a six-figure issue education effort to inform Missourians about the benefits of the recently-passed right-to-work legislation. AFP-Foundation will use digital ads, door-to-door canvassing, volunteer phone calls, and mailers to educate residents of how right-to-work affects Missouri workers.

The first mailer will land in residents’ mailboxes this week, which can be viewed here. The campaign also features a video:

You can learn more about the education campaign at

AFP-Foundation Missouri State Director Jeremy Cady issued the following statement on the right-to-work education campaign:

“We want to make sure all Missourians understand the facts about how right-to-work protects the freedom of every worker to decide whether to join a union or pay union dues. Passing this law was a major victory for worker freedom and we must make sure all Missourians hear the facts on how this law affects them.

“This campaign also solidifies the Foundation’s grassroots commitment and our mission to make sure every resident is armed with the knowledge to make informed decisions.”

The It’s Working effort is a project of Americans for Prosperity Foundation (AFP Foundation), a nonpartisan organization committed to educating citizens about the value of limited government and a free market economy. AFP Foundation’s educational programs and analyses help the public at large understand why the American free enterprise system is the best method to ensuring prosperity for all Americans. For more information, please visit

Americans For Prosperity Calls on Rep. Smith to Seize Opportunity for Tax Reform

Free Market Group Launches Major Grassroots Ad Effort

Jefferson City, MO – Americans for Prosperity today launched its first ads as part of a major grassroots campaign urging dozens of Members of Congress to “un-rig” the economy by seizing the opportunity to enact pro-growth tax reform. The heavy six-figure investment on digital platforms is the beginning of a summer long, comprehensive effort by AFP to push for broad, pro-growth tax reform that is based on AFP’s 5 Principles: Simplicity, Efficiency, Equitability, Predictability, and No New Burdens on Taxpayers. The group will spend several hundred thousand dollars on digital advertising, and follow it with more investments, direct mail, door-to-door visits, and other grassroots action around the country.

Included in the first round of ads is one encouraging activists in Missouri to contact Rep. Jason Smith and tell him to “support AFP’s plan to un-rig the economy.”

Rep. Smith is an important member of the House Ways and Means Committee, which will write the tax reform bill the House will consider later this year. State Director Jeremy Cady issued the following statement:

“Missourians believe the tax system is rigged and want a new one that is not only honest and fair, but will spur economic growth. We hope Rep. Smith will take a leadership role in passing pro-growth tax reform based on AFP’s 5 Principles of simplicity, efficiency, equitability, predictability, and no new burden on taxpayers. That also includes opposing a border adjustment tax – a trillion-dollar tax on consumers masquerading as a tax on imports.”

Americans for Prosperity Opposes Special Handout

Jefferson City, MO – Americans for Prosperity-Missouri opposes HB 1 in the current special session. This legislation would grant Missouri’s electric utility ability to offer a special rate “not based on the cost of service” to aluminum smelting and steel work facilities. And to cover their potential losses in profit, the utility may increase its rate on other customers to “ensure the net operating income of the electrical corporation”.

State Director Jeremy Cady issued the following statement on the pending legislation:

“This bill is classic cronyism at work. It is wrong for the Legislature to create special utility rates for corporate customers at the expense of every other customer, especially our least fortunate and those living on a fixed income.”

New Evidence Shows Obamacare Crushing Missourians

Jefferson City, MO – Americans for Prosperity – Missouri reacted to two new data points showing Obamacare continues to debilitate healthcare in Missouri. First, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services release a report late yesterday comparing premium costs for individual market plans purchased by consumers in 2013 to Obamacare exchange plans purchased in 2017.  Covering the 39 states using the platform, the report found that in Missouri, the average monthly premium increased from $197 in 2013 to $483 in 2017, an increase of 145 percent!

Then today Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Kansas City announced it would be leaving the Obamacare exchanges in Missouri, citing “unsustainable” losses of $100 million through 2016.

State Director Jeremy Cady issued the following statement:

“This official government report and the decision by Blue Cross-Blue Shield show that Obamacare is the costly disaster that continues to doom Missouri. Our worst fears about this law are coming true – more expensive healthcare and fewer options than before. Congress should not delay any longer in repealing this harmful law.”


In a letter issued earlier this week, Freedom Partners and Americans for Prosperity urged Senate lawmakers to repeal Obamacare and pass additional reforms that will reduce prices and create more affordable options for patients across the country. The two organizations offered to work with Senators who are working on health care legislation to build on the House’s recent efforts by repealing as much of Obamacare as possible. The groups also encouraged lawmakers to consider four key elements that would “drive down costs, create more affordable options, and expand access to quality care for everyone – especially those most in need.” Click here to read the full letter.

Americans for Prosperity – Missouri Calls on Rep. Smith to Oppose a B.A.T. as Part to Tax Reform

JEFFERSON CITY – In the wake of a new study by Americans for Prosperity (AFP) on industries that would be most affected by a border adjustment tax (B.A.T.), AFP-MO called on House Ways and Means Committee Member Rep. Jason Smith (MO-08) to oppose the inclusion of a B.A.T. as part of any tax reform bill. The Ways and Means Committee will write the tax reform bill that the House will consider later this year and is holding a hearing this week on how tax reform will grow the economy.

A B.A.T. would slap a 20% tax on everything companies import into the U.S and would raise an estimated trillion dollars in revenue. Some lawmakers want to include a B.A.T. as part of an overall tax reform plan. AFP has consistently supported pro-growth tax reform that closes loopholes and lowers rates. The grassroots group believes a B.A.T. tax would amount to a trillion-dollar consumer tax that should be excluded from any plan.

The AFP report, The Border Adjustment Tax Impact by Industry, looked at how particular industries are threatened by a B.A.T.: manufacturing, energy, retail, financial services, and agriculture. Together these industries employ nearly a third of private-sector American workers. The report found that in Missouri, these industries contribute 28.7% to state GDP and employs 944,774 workers. This follows on the heels of a report AFP issued in April showing that Missouri would be hard hit by a B.A.T.

State Director Jeremy Cady issued the following statement:

“This is a trillion dollar tax on consumers masquerading as a tax on imports. Our report shows it’s a raw deal for Missouri and our retail, finance, and advanced manufacturing sectors. Our activists urge Rep. Smith to reject this horribly unfair tax and we want him to know we’ll be watching him during the committee proceedings.”

Missouri Government Plate Codes

In case you ever wondered, here are the departments corresponding to the codes on Missouri government plates.

Code Dept
1 Governor
2 Lt Governor
3 Secretary of State
4 Auditor
5 Treasurer
6 Attorney General
10 Office of Administration
11 Dept of Agriculture
12 Dept of Conservation
13 Dept of Corrections
14 Economic Development
16 Dept Health and Senior Services
17 Education
18 MoDOT
23 Natural Resources
24 Natural Resources
29 Legislature
32 OA Fleet
33 OA Pool Cars

‘Dark Money’, Amendment 2 Court Decision, and Education Savings Accounts

May 8, 2017

With President Donald Trump and Secretary Betsy DeVos supporting parental choice from Washington, ESAs draw serious attention to the ongoing conversation in Congress about the role the…
`Dark money` bill finally gets hearing after secretive attack...
JEFFERSON CITY – The omnipresent storm clouds vanished Tuesday, and a little light was shone on a “dark money” bill that had languished in legislative purgatory. Way back in December, Sen….
New St. Louis minimum wage goes into effect Friday
ST. LOUIS * The city’s new minimum wage of $10 per hour for most jobs will take effect Friday, Mayor Lyda Krewson’s office announced. The ordinance for the new wage – which is well above…
Border adjustment tax could devastate Missouri importers, jobs
Congress has a rare opportunity in the coming months to replace our nation’s broken and dysfunctional tax code with one that is simple, efficient and fair for all Americans. But one…
Koch brothers-funded Americans for Prosperity starts ad campaign...
JEFFERSON CITY – A nationwide group backed by two Republican megadonors is throwing its weight behind a Nixa lawmaker’s bill that would require regular union recertification elections….
With President Donald Trump and Secretary Betsy DeVos supporting parental choice from Washington, ESAs draw serious attention to the ongoing conversation in Congress about the role the…
Missouri State Senator is "cautiously optimistic" about...
A Missouri lawmaker pushing legislation to fund Scottrade Center renovations in St. Louis is hopeful, with the session’s final week starting. The 2017 Missouri legislative session ends…
RTW: `If we had the election today, we`d beat this thing`
By TIM ROWDEN Editor More than 400 union members and supporters turned out at the St. Louis Labor Council recently to receive training to gather signatures on the Citizens’ Referendum…
`Dark money` ban sputters as Gov. Greitens` nonprofit appears...
Sen. Rob Schaaf has been demanding for months that the Missouri Senate debate a ban on so-called dark money. The St. Joseph Republican and a bipartisan group of like-minded lawmakers have…
Campaign contribution amendment largely overturned in federal...
2,600-donation limit remains KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Western District Court of Missouri overturned the one of popular ballot issue in the state Friday when it ruled the state needs to stop…

AFP Commends Senate, Sen. Onder For Defending Free Speech

JEFFERSON CITY – Americans for Prosperity-Missouri today applauded the efforts of Sen. Bob Onder and his allies for staging a successful filibuster against the inclusion of a harmful amendment introduced by Sen. Rob Schaaf to SB 305, a lobbying reform bill. The amendment would force non-profits to report their supporters to the government and also give broad authority to the Missouri Ethics Commission, threatening free speech in Missouri.

State Director Jeremy Cady issued the following statement:

“We commend Sen. Onder and his allies for taking a strong stand for free speech in Missouri. All Missourians should be able to support causes without the fear of retaliation by government officials. We hope the tabling of the Schaaf amendment will convince the Senate to stop wasting time on this anti-free speech effort.They should focus instead on issues Missourians need addressed.”