The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

September 2, 2012

Susan Redden: Democrats to step into spotlight

Republicans have ceded the national political spotlight, and Democrats will step into the glare starting Tuesday when the Democratic National Convention begins in Charlotte, N.C.

More than 3,000 delegates are to attend the gathering to officially nominate Barack Obama to run for a second presidential term. Those numbers will include a local contingent: Doug Brooks, of Joplin, a member of the Democratic National Committee; and delegates Rayman Conrad, also of Joplin; Jim Hight, of Neosho, chairman of the Newton County Democratic Central Committee; and Jim Oberbeck, of Scammon, Kan., head of the Cherokee County Democratic Committee.

Speakers are to include former Presidents Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter; Newark (N.J.) Mayor Cory Booker; former Govs. Charlie Crist, of Florida, Tim Kaine, of Virginia, and Jennifer Granholm, of Michigan; Caroline Kennedy, daughter of President John Kennedy; U.S. Sen. John Kerry; Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of health and human services and a former Kansas governor; Arne Duncan, secretary of education; and actress Eva Longoria, a co-chairwoman of the Obama campaign.

Another speaker, San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, is being billed as the first Latino keynote speaker at a Democratic National Convention.

Missouri state Sen. Ron Richard, of Joplin, a delegate to last week’s Republican convention, said a number of minority speakers were featured at the convention, but their appearances were not widely broadcast.

If the Democrats have lined up a surprise speaker to counter Clint Eastwood, he or she hadn’t been announced as of last week.

Primaries have made the conventions anticlimactic, even more so with the Democratic gathering to nominate an incumbent president and vice president.

Mitt Romney already had named Wisconsin U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan as his running mate, and the rules were set so that votes for Romney’s primary opponents were not publicly announced.

It wasn’t exactly drama, but Missouri delegates got some attention in the wake of the Todd Akin flap. Delegates from other states, they said, wanted to know about the conflict between Akin and party leadership after he refused to get out of the race in which he is challenging Democrat Claire McCaskill for a U.S. Senate seat.

Akin said during a St. Louis television interview that women who are victims of “legitimate rape” rarely get pregnant. He has apologized several times and said he misspoke. He has said he will stay in the race because he was chosen by Missouri voters in the primary. John Putnam, a delegate from Carthage and an Akin supporter, said there was a significant amount of backing for Akin among delegates from other parts of the state.

The Republican Party has withdrawn funding in the race, along with a couple of outside groups that were spending money against McCaskill.

During the convention, Akin’s campaign issued several fundraising appeals, including one critical of Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee. In a video, Priebus says the party “would not give a penny” to Akin even if he were tied with McCaskill.

Perry Akin, the candidate’s son and campaign manager, called Priebus’ comments “extremely disappointing.”

“He claims the mantle of freedom, liberty and the good of America, but this betrays his apparent personal vendetta against Todd Akin,” Perry Akin said. “He is putting party power and political games ahead of the good of the country.”

Party leaders have said Akin’s campaign is damaged to the point that he can’t beat McCaskill, and that he is putting his own ambitions before the party by staying in a race the Republicans need to win in their bid for a Senate majority.

Results of two recent polls in the state show McCaskill with a comfortable lead. But sampling by Public Policy Polling has her leading by one point, and while a poll commissioned by the Family Research Council gives Akin a three-point lead. Akin continues to receive backing from the council and from former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.

SUSAN REDDEN is a staff writer for the Globe. She can be reached at or 417-623-3480, ext. 7258. Follow her on Twitter @Susan_Redden.

Text Only
Local News
  • 0420earthday.jpg Prairie State Park kicks off Earth Day events

    Prairie State Park began celebrating Earth Day early with an event Saturday that provided a chance for people of all ages to learn more about how they can protect the environment.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Joplin Catholic schools to hold annual spring auction

    The Joplin Area Catholic Schools spring auction will be staged Saturday at the Jack Lawton Webb Convention Center, 5300 S. Range Line Road in Joplin.

    April 19, 2014

  • Wally Kennedy MUG72.jpg Wally Kennedy: Another pizza choice and ice cream on the way

    A new pizza restaurant is coming to the northwest corner of Stone’s Corner in the Village of Airport Drive. Piez is opening this week in a storefront that formerly housed Quincy Magoo’s, 6039 N. Main Street Road, which has been closed for more than two years.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • mike pound_cnhi .jpg Mike Pound: No more hiding Easter eggs or emotions

    Well, that’s a wrap on the Easter egg hunts. For about 15 years we have staged not one, but two Easter egg hunts for our now 16-year-old daughter, Emma.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 041914 Wedding1_72.jpg VIDEO: Cancer patient walks down aisle in wedding thrown by friends

    A year ago, Schandera Jordan was diagnosed with a rare form cervical cancer. And months after a radical hysterectomy, doctors confirmed the worst: The cancer had spread to her lungs and pancreas.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • r041614giregabby.jpg SLIDE SHOW: Teen with cystic fibrosis finds widespread support

    When the Nevada Show Choir performs its spring show on stage, it’s impossible to pick out the student with cystic fibrosis because there are no outward clues.
    Gabby Gire, 18, is just another performer. She sings, she dances, she smiles for the audience.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo 1 Slideshow

  • Enrollment open for Joplin summer school

    Enrollment is now open for the Joplin school district’s summer school session, which will run Wednesday, June 4, though Tuesday, July 1.

    April 19, 2014

  • r041814capbus4.jpg Funding shortfall could hinder public transportation in Southeast Kansas

    For the past two years, Pittsburg State University sophomore Travis Cook has been using public transportation to get to and from his classes. He began using the bus his freshman year, when he didn’t have a vehicle to drive even to the grocery store — which is said to be the case for many who use the service.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Bruner denied change of venue for murder trial

    Circuit Judge Gayle Crane has denied a change of venue for a defendant charged with fatally shooting an assistant football coach at Missouri Southern State University. The attorney for Jeffrey Bruner claimed pretrial publicity as the reason for seeking a change of venue in Jasper County Circuit Court.

    April 18, 2014

  • Russell family sues city, Joplin police

    Family members of a teenage girl whose suicide a year ago brought them into conflict with police officers and emergency medical technicians are suing the city and the Joplin Police Department. Kevin and Julissa Russell and their son, Brant Russell, are the plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed in Jasper County Circuit Court. The action filed on the Russells’ behalf by Kansas City attorney Andrew Protzman names the city, the Police Department and Officers Austin Wolf and Tyler Christensen as defendants.

    April 18, 2014

Must Read


Missouri Republicans are considering a new approach to prevent federal agents from enforcing laws the state considers to be infringements on gun rights: barring them from future careers in state law enforcement agencies. Do you think this proposal has merit?

     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter