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Filing Begins for Missouri Presidential Primary

Amid questions about whether the primary will amount to anything, supporters of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney threw his name into contest.

Candidate filing began this week for the state’s presidential primary amid questions about whether the contest will have any bearing on choosing presidential delegates.

As of press time, four Republican presidential aspirants have signed up for next February’s contest. That list includes former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Georgia businessman Herman Cain, former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson and St. Louis resident Michael Meheen.

Republicans opted to select their delegates through a caucus process after the legislature failed to pass legislation moving the primary from February to March. Such a move was necessary to avoid running afoul of party rules.

Secretary of State Robin Carnahan has been a strong supporter of keeping the primary going, adding that she would prefer the delegates be allocated based on the results of the primary. She said as much in a statement announcing candidate filing last week.

“Just as ordinary Missourians have the chance to vote for party nominees for senator, governor and all their state and county elected officials, the Presidential Preference Primary on February 7, 2012 gives them a vote in nominating the next president,” Carnahan said in a statement. “Electing the President of the United States is serious business. Every Missourian should have the right to participate in that process.”

Some notable adherents of Romney’s campaign showed up in Jefferson City this week to file his name in the primary. The delegation included Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO), Senate Majority Leader Tom Dempsey (R-St. Charles), state Auditor Tom Schweich and state Rep. Jay Barnes (R-Jefferson City).

“America needs an economic turnaround, and Mitt's the guy for the job,” Barnes said on his Facebook page.

CARNAHAN MAKES “VULNERABLE” LIST

A political observer placed U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-St. Louis) on a list of vulnerable incumbents.

Carnahan, who nearly lost re-election last year against Republican attorney Ed Martin, was effectively the odd man out in the state’s redistricting process. That prompted political analyst Stuart Rothenberg to place Carnahan on his “dangerous dozen list.”

“Missouri lost a district, and the GOP Legislature squeezed out Carnahan,” Rothenberg wrote. “Some of his district was given to Rep. William Lacy Clay, D-St. Louis City, and the rest to Rep. Todd Akin, R-Wildwood. Carnahan hasn’t announced his plans, but since Akin is running for the Senate, a run in his district would seem more likely than against Clay in a district where African-Americans constitute a large majority in a Democratic primary.”

Rothenberg went onto say that Akin’s open seat leans Republican, as evidenced by the fact that Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, received 53 percent of the vote there in 2008.

“So if Carnahan does run for re-election, he’ll start off in a very difficult position,” Rothenberg wrote.

Click here to read Rothenberg’s full list of vulnerable incumbents.

MOTHER OF ALL BETS?

There have been a lot of . But the wager between Carnahan and Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) may take the cake.

The two lawmakers announced Tuesday they will each wager 11 items on the final outcome of the World Series. As of press time, the Texas Rangers are leading the St. Louis Cardinals 3-2.

“The Cardinals need to win 11 games this postseason to become world champions for the 11th time in history,”  Carnahan said in a statement. “In honor of the 2011 St. Louis Cardinals, I’m wagering 11 items of importance to St. Louisans with my friend Henry Cuellar.  May the best team win.”

If Cuellar wins, which is looking quite possible right now, Carnahan must fork over:

- A pack of assorted Anheuser-Busch products

- Wine “made in beautiful Ste. Genevieve”

- Fitz’s Root Beer

- Toasted ravioli from

- Honey from the beehives at Maplewood Richmond Heights School in Maplewood

- Missouri barbecue from Pappy’s

- Ted Drewes frozen custard

- Kakao Chocolate

- A musical recording from St. Louis native Chuck Berry

-  Moses Austin and Stephen F. Austin, a book by Betsy Warren about native Missourians Moses and Stephen Austin, who founded the state of Texas

-  A championship Build-a-Bear wearing a St. Louis Cardinals uniform

But if the Cardinals emulate the Rally Squirrel and stage a comeback, Cuellar must provide Carnahan with:

- Bill Miller Bar-B-Q

- A Texas Rangers T-shirt

- A pack of Shiner Beer

- A pack of Dr Pepper from Dublin, TX, made with sugarcane

- Cowboy hat from Pleasanton, TX

- The Guenther House assorted gifts

- Mexican food from Taco Palenque

- CD from Intocable from Zapata, TX

- CD from Selena y Los Dinos from Corpus Christi, TX

- Pecan pralines from San Antonio

- Strawberry Poteet wine from Poteet, Texas

“I stand by the Texas Rangers and am hopeful they will bring the win to the Lone Star State,” Cuellar said in a statement. “As has Congressman Carnahan, I too have prepared an assortment of Texas goods and products to be delivered to him. I wish both teams the best of luck.”

The bet between Carnahan and Cuellar seems to top others seen so far, including the one between Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon and Texas Gov. Rick Perry. You can see a full list of bets courtesy of KWMU by clicking here.

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