Turncoat legislators accepted campaign funds from unions, then voted for RTW

Businessman With Finger Crossed Holding BanknotesBy TIM ROWDEN


Missouri’s turncoat legislators – four Republican representatives who voted against right-to-work in this year’s regular session, then changed their vote to support a veto override of the anti-union, anti-worker legislation – each accepted from hundreds to thousands of dollars in voluntary campaign contributions from union members before showing their true colors.

“It’s the height of hypocrisy for these legislators to accept voluntary contributions from hardworking union members and then turn their backs on the members who made those contributions,” said Mike Louis, president of the Missouri AFL-CIO. “It’s unconscionable to think they would accept these contributions.”


One of the worst examples is Robert Cornejo of St. Peters – who not only accepted $6,300 in union campaign contributions, but also bragged about it in a venomous email exchange with a member of Bricklayers Local 1, who had emailed Cornejo’s office to chastise him for changing his vote.

“I received more in campaign contributions from the unions (who received out of state money from the National and International Brotherhoods) than any Koch money (zero),” Cornejo wrote, referencing the billionaire Koch brothers and their dark money political influence.

Cornejo’s campaign may not have received money directly from Koch brothers, but he is certainly benefiting from their money. The Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is advertising for him on KMOX radio asking listeners to “thank him” for turning his back on Missouri’s working families.

These are the union contributions Cornejo accepted between July 8 and Sept. 14 (two days before the veto session):

  • Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen – $300
  • Glaziers Missouri PAC – $1,000
  • IAFF Local 2665 – $1,200
  • Missouri Fraternal Order of Police – $300
  • Missouri State Council of Fire Fighters $500
  • Teamsters Local 41 – $500
  • Teamsters Local 54 – $500
  • Teamsters Local 618 – $500
  • Teamsters Local 688 – $1,500

The next closest in union contributions accepted was Dan Shaul (R-Imperial) who received a total of $2,600 from the

very unions and union workers he voted against.

Here’s a breakdown of contributions that Shaul received in July and August:

  • Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen – $300
  • IBEW PAC – $300
  • Teamsters Local 41 – $500
  • Teamsters Local 541 – $500
  • Teamsters Local 618 – $500
  • Teamsters Local 688 – $500

Wallet Full of Money


In an act of purest deception, James Neely (R-Cameron) accepted a $750 donation from Sheet Metal Workers Local 2 on Sept. 15 – the day before he voted to override the governor’s veto. Combined with $300 Neely accepted from the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen he received a total of $1,050 from unions.


Randy Pietzman (R-Troy) accepted only one union contribution – $300 from the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen. But that’s still too much considering his vote.

“It’s shameful,” Louis said. “These legislators should return these voluntary contributions to the hardworking union members.”

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