Lawmakers offer mixed reactions to speech

Gov. Jay Nixon’s third State of the State address generated mixed reactions from Mid-Missouri’s 10 lawmakers.

Jefferson City’s three freshman Republicans — Sen. Mike Kehoe and Reps. Jay Barnes and Mike Bernskoetter — and second term Rep. Jeanie Riddle, R-Mokane, all applauded Nixon’s support for a second Callaway County nuclear reactor.

Nixon said Wednesday night: “Missouri has some of the lowest electric rates in the nation. That’s attractive to businesses and families.

“But as our energy needs grow, we need to be looking now for new sources of clean, abundant and affordable power. (And) building a second nuclear plant will create thousands of good-paying jobs for all our construction trades.”

Kehoe, who sponsors the Senate’s version of the bill letting Ameren Missouri recover the costs of successfully applying for a site permit, said Thursday afternoon: “Jobs are a non-partisan issue, and putting people back to work — no matter what side of the aisle you’re on — I think it’s something that everybody wants to see happen.”

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