Missouri Democrats call on Kucinich, Tester to rally base

— Ahead of a major re-election operation for four state-wide Democrats, and a fractured congressional delegation following redistricting, Missouri Democrats are bringing in some out of state help to rally their base at two big dinners this summer.

In Kansas City, Democrats have booked U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, to keynote the annual Truman Days Gala next weekend, hosted by the Jackson County Democratic Committee. Kucinich, a former Presidential candidate, will speak in the time slot filled last year by Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Shultz.

“For 24 years the JCDC has hosted prominent Democrats from all over the state and country. This year is no exception,” said Jessica Podhola, executive director of the JCDC.

Next month in St. Louis, the Missouri Democratic Party will host its annual Jefferson-Jackson dinner, where members of the Wisconsin Senate Democratic Caucus and U.S. Senator Jon Tester, D-Montana, are expected to attend. Democrats say the lineup shows a commitment to both public employees, often more urban residents, and the rural Americans they represent.

“One of the issues I promised to address as chair of the Missouri Democratic Party was the need for a state party that reflected the values of Missourians, and not just the concerns of our cousins on the east and west coasts,” said MDP chairman Susan Montee. “Senator Tester is an outspoken Democratic voice for rural America, working families, small businesses, and family agriculture. He said of the debate about the minimum wage that it measured whether or not we saw value in work. He celebrates integrity, common sense, and transparency in government.”

While both events are meant to rally party faithful, they serve another purpose: Fundraising. Tables at the Truman Days dinner in Kansas City start at $750, and reservations for the Jackson-Days dinner in St. Louis start at $125 a person ($1,250 a table).

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