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Politically Speaking: Treasurer Zweifel On Tax Credits, Military Matters And Political Futures

Chris McDaniel, St. Louis Public Radio

Every week, St. Louis Public Radio's Chris McDaniel, Jo Mannies and Jason Rosenbaum talk about the week’s politics.  

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The Politically Speaking crew welcomes its fourth statewide official to the show – state Treasurer Clint Zweifel. The north St. Louis County native is responsible for a host of financially related matters, including managing the state’s college saving program, overseeing the state's financial investments and returning unclaimed property to Missouri residents. He also sits on the Missouri Housing Development Commission, which doles out low-income housing tax credits to developers.

After winning two terms as Missouri treasurer, Zweifel -- a Democrat -- is prohibited from running for re-election in 2016. While he’s sworn off running for governor, rumors have it that he may run for lieutenant governor or the U.S. Senate in 2016.

On the show, Zweifel said:

  • He’s hoping for a legislative resolution to the longstanding debate over how high of a ceiling should be set for Missouri’s low-income housing tax credit program.  Zweifel says the continued controversy, which has gone on for years,  has “gotten us on a treadmill” in which no decision is reached. He hopes the General Assembly will finally reach a decision, so it can focus on other things.
  • While he hasn’t found any exotic animals or royal crowns as unclaimed property, Zweifel has taken note of other unusual items. People commonly leave baseball cards and coins behind in safe deposit boxes, along with military medals.  In recent years, he said there's been a concentrated effort to return such medals to veterans and their families.    
  • As the head of the Missouri Military Partnership, Zweifel is looking at ways that state government can help the federal military bases situated within the state. And he’s being tasked with improving the quality of life for Missourians who are in the military.
  • Zweifel hasn’t made a decision about his 2016 plans, but he is not going to run for anything this year. (That means he’s not running for state auditor.)
  • While he’s optimistic about fellow Democrats' efforts to increase their numbers in the Republican-controlled state House and Senate,  Zweifel said success will require “a candidate recruitment plan” and a “unified effort.” He also said Democrats are not going to be out of the legislative woods “overnight.”

Follow Chris McDaniel on Twitter@csmcdaniel

Follow Jo Mannies on Twitter@jmannies

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter@jrosenbaum

Follow Clint Zweifel on Twitter: @MoTreasurer

Jason is the politics correspondent for St. Louis Public Radio.
Jo Mannies has been covering Missouri politics and government for almost four decades, much of that time as a reporter and columnist at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She was the first woman to cover St. Louis City Hall, was the newspaper’s second woman sportswriter in its history, and spent four years in the Post-Dispatch Washington Bureau. She joined the St. Louis Beacon in 2009. She has won several local, regional and national awards, and has covered every president since Jimmy Carter. She scared fellow first-graders in the late 1950s when she showed them how close Alaska was to Russia and met Richard M. Nixon when she was in high school. She graduated from Valparaiso University in northwest Indiana, and was the daughter of a high school basketball coach. She is married and has two grown children, both lawyers. She’s a history and movie buff, cultivates a massive flower garden, and bakes banana bread regularly for her colleagues.