Peter Kinder

Peter Kinder
46th Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Assumed office
January 10, 2005
Governor Matt Blunt
Jay Nixon
Preceded by Joe Maxwell
Succeeded by Mike Parson (elect)
Personal details
Born (1954-05-12) May 12, 1954
Cape Girardeau, Missouri, U.S.
Political party Republican
Alma mater Southeast Missouri State

University of Missouri,
St. Mary's University, Texas (JD)

Peter D. Kinder (born May 12, 1954) is an American politician and member of the Republican Party who has served as the Lieutenant Governor of Missouri since 2005.[1][2]

Kinder was first elected in 2004, succeeding Matt Blunt, who was elected Governor of Missouri.[2] Kinder was re-elected in 2008 at the same time Democrat Jay Nixon was elected Governor.[2] Kinder was the only Republican in Missouri to win statewide office in 2008, as all other Republicans running for each of the other statewide offices suffered defeat.[3] Despite the generally poor election year for Republicans, Kinder carried 109 of Missouri's 114 counties.[2]

He was considered the front-runner in the 2012 Republican gubernatorial primary. He instead ran for re-election in 2012 and was again the only Republican to win statewide and became the first Lieutenant Governor to be elected to a third term in Missouri since 1940.[4] In July 2015, Kinder announced his entry into the 2016 gubernatorial election, and was defeated in the Republican primary by Eric Greitens.[5]

Education and early career

Kinder was born and raised in Cape Girardeau, the son of pediatrician James A. Kinder, Jr. and Mary Frances Hunter Kinder. He attended Cape Girardeau Public Schools and then attended Southeast Missouri State University and the University of Missouri in Columbia.[2] He graduated from St. Mary's University School of Law in San Antonio, Texas in 1979 and was admitted to the Missouri Bar in 1980.[2]

In 1972, fresh out of high school, Kinder worked for former U.S. Sen. Jack Danforth's re-election bid for Missouri attorney general.[6][7] After graduating from law school at St. Mary's University in San Antonio, Texas, Kinder managed Bill Emerson's successful 1980 campaign for U.S. Congress.[8] It was the first time a Republican won in southeast Missouri for U.S. Congress since 1928.[9]

After law school Kinder served as a member of the late U.S. Representative Bill Emerson's staff in Washington, D.C. from 1980 to 1983.[2] He returned to Missouri and worked as an attorney and real estate specialist for hotel developer Charles Drury of Drury Industries.[2] In 1987 Kinder became associate publisher of the Southeast Missourian newspaper, where he wrote weekly columns and editorials.[2]

Southeast Missouri Hospital in Cape Girardeau dedicated its Department of Pediatrics in memory to his father James A. Kinder, M.D. who died on July 1, 2000. His mother, who died on January 4, 2008, sang duets with the mother of Rush Limbaugh for 50 years; Rush Limbaugh attended the funeral.[10]

Political career

In 1992 Kinder made his first bid for public office, winning election to a seat in the Missouri State Senate representing Cape Girardeau and surrounding counties by defeating former Missouri First Lady and gubernatorial candidate Betty C. Hearnes (D). Kinder was reelected to the State Senate in 1996 and 2000.[2] When the Republicans gained a majority in the Missouri Senate for the first time in over 50 years, following a round of special elections in February 2001, Kinder was voted president pro tempore, the top official in the Missouri Senate.[2] Kinder was the first Republican president pro tempore in the Missouri Senate in 53 years.[2] In 2004 he sought and won election as lieutenant governor, defeating Bekki Cook (D-Cape Girardeau).


As a member of the Missouri Tourism Commission, Kinder helped establish the Tour of Missouri, an international professional bicycle race, and served as its Chairman.[2] The week-long (6 days in 2007), 600+ mile event[11] first took place in 2007, with Kinder as its chairman.[2] The race was extended to seven days for 2008 and 2009.[2] The race ran annually from 2007 to 2009 and was the third highest profile domestic race in the United States.[12] The Tour of Missouri was one of the top stage races outside of Europe and brought in athletes from over 20 countries.[13] During its three-year run, the race attracted an estimated 1.2 million spectators and created a direct economic impact of $80 million.[13] The Tour of Missouri was cancelled from 2010 by the Missouri Tourism Commission.[14][15] Funding for the tour was described as a power struggle between Kinder and Governor Nixon.

Kinder was reelected in November 2008.[3] As Lieutenant Governor, Kinder is Missouri's official senior advocate.[16] He led a lawsuit by Missouri citizens against the federal healthcare law.[2] Kinder's lawsuit seeks to have the individual mandate declared unconstitutional.[2] On August 4, 2010, Missouri voters passed Proposition C, rejecting the federal law's mandate to purchase health insurance, by 71%.[17]


Alleged relationship with exotic dancer

In August 2011, the St. Louis Riverfront Times published an article where Tammy Chapman, a former exotic dancer and 1992 Penthouse Pet, claimed she met Kinder at a political event at a gentlemen's club around 1994.[18] The two did not speak again until a chance encounter 18 years later during the summer of 2011. Chapman approached Kinder and asked to take a photo with him.[18] The photo was then published when The Riverfront Times ran Chapman's speculative story where Chapman claimed Kinder visited her club in the early to mid 90s when he was a state senator.[18]

Kinder responded and said he had visited the club around 1994 and met Chapman, and that he had not seen her again until the chance encounter in 2011.[19] Chapman confirmed that the two had not spoken since the mid 90s until she saw him in 2011 and approached him to take a picture.[18] Kinder said that, sometime around 1994, after going to the club he decided not to go back because it was inconsistent with how he had been raised.[19] Kinder stated that Chapman's story was part of a "partisan smear" to derail his campaign for Governor.[19] Kinder further said that Democrats tried to use similar tactics against him in his 2008 campaign for Lieutenant Governor.[19]

Hotel expenses and repayment

In April 2011, the St. Louis Post Dispatch published a story stating that Kinder (who has a home in Cape Girardeau and an office in Jefferson City) charged the taxpayers over $35,000 for at least 329 nights at hotels in St. Louis and St. Louis County since 2006.[20] Kinder responded that he had been audited twice, both times by Democratic state auditors, and no concerns were raised about any of the hotel stays.[21] Kinder stated that he always paid the government rate, typically $105/night, during his stays at the Chase Park Plaza, the Four Seasons, the Ritz-Carlton and elsewhere.[21] He further stated, “There were many times I’d attempt to stay at other [lesser known] hotels, The Sheraton, The Westin, The Renaissance Grand, some Hampton Inns and they would have a rate higher than the $105 that I was staying with."[21] Kinder defended the stays as fulfillment of official government duties as Lt Governor; meetings, events, and state business that he routinely scheduled during his weekly drive home to Cape Girardeau from Jefferson City.[21] Kinder maintained that all of the overnight stays were proper, and tied to official events. He acknowledged that on occasion he attended campaign or personal events the same days he was in the area as a practice of good financial stewardship. Kinder announced that he would repay the state $35,050 for hotel costs incurred while traveling in the St. Louis area, to avoid "the slightest taint or suspicion" associated with his name or public service.[22] Due to a change in campaign finance laws, Kinder was not allowed to use campaign funds and instead had to repay the money personally.[23] Kinder elected to repay $52,320, the entire amount that he had been reimbursed by the state for in-state travel since 2005.[23] A spokesman for Kinder stated, "He didn't want any questions about the value he places on the use of taxpayer dollars."[23]

Shooting of Michael Brown

In reference to the period after the shooting of Michael Brown by police in August 2014, Kinder said in March 2015 that President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder had engaged in "incitement of the mob" and "encouraging disorder in Ferguson."[24] Kinder also repeatedly accused Missouri Governor Jay Nixon of reckless disregard and lack of leadership during the Ferguson riots.[25][26][27] Kinder also claimed that the Obama administration had pressured Governor Nixon to show restraint. Nixon called the accusation "false and absurd."[28][27]

2016 campaign

Kinder announced in the Ferguson/Dellwood area in July 2015 that he would seek election to the Missouri governor's office in 2016.[29] Following his announcement, an August 2015 Public Policy Polling poll showed that Peter Kinder lead Democratic candidate Chris Koster 40% to 37%.[30] Results of a transportation union funded poll from April 2016 showed Kinder as the only Republican candidate close to Koster, yet trailing; its margin of error at 3.8% with 95% confidence.[31] In late June 2016, Kinder was trailing the three other Republican primary candidates in fundraising, having raised $1.5 million.[32] The other Republican candidates, Greitens, Brunner, and Hanaway, had collected $6.2, $5.7, and $3.4 million, respectively.

Kinder lost the Missouri Republican primary on August 2, 2016. He finished third with 20.7% of the popular vote, losing to Eric Greitens. Kinder carried six counties in Southeast Missouri, including Bollinger, Cape Girardeau, Mississippi, Perry, Scott, and Stoddard, with businessman John Brunner winning eleven counties mostly in Southwest Missouri and Navy SEAL Eric Greitens winning the rest of the state.[33][34] When his term as lieutenant governor expires in January 2017, Kinder will be out of public office for the first time since his election to the state Senate in 1992.[35]

Electoral history

As Lt. Governor

2012 Election for Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder (incumbent) 1,319,747 49.28 -0.60
Democratic Susan Montee 1,219,457 45.53 -1.78
Libertarian Matthew Copple 75,169 2.81 +1.04
Constitution Cynthia L. Davis 63,594 2.37 +1.33
Write-in Charles Jackson 346 0.01
2012 Republican Primary Election for Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder (incumbent) 255,064 44.19
Republican Brad Lager 239,735 41.53
Republican Mike Carter 47,515 8.23
Republican Charles Kullmann 34,940 6.05
2008 Election for Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder (incumbent) 1,403,706 49.88 +0.93
Democratic Sam Page 1,331,177 47.31 -1.12
Libertarian Teddy Fleck 49,862 1.77 -0.25
Constitution James C. Rensing 29,153 1.04 +0.44
2008 Republican Primary Election for Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder (incumbent) 284,064 78.3
Republican Paul Douglas Sims 50,870 14.0
Republican Arthur Hodge, Sr. 27,994 7.7
2004 Election for Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder 1,300,109 48.95
Democratic Bekki Cook 1,286,295 48.43
Libertarian Mike Ferguson 53,770 2.02
Constitution Bruce Hillis 15,935 0.60
2004 Republican Primary Election for Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder 313,528 56.2
Republican Patricia "Pat" Secrest 244,699 43.8

As Missouri State Senator

2000 Election for Missouri’s 27th Senatorial District Seat
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder (incumbent) 49,442 100.00 +36.27
1996 Election for Missouri’s 27th Senatorial District Seat
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder (incumbent) 40,412 63.73
Democratic Rick Althaus 22,999 36.27
1992 Election for Missouri’s 27th Senatorial District Seat
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Peter Kinder 37,047 55.41
Democratic Betty Hearnes 29,817 44.59

See also

Missouri gubernatorial election, 2012


  1. "History of the Office of Lieutenant Governor". State of Missouri Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder. Retrieved August 19, 2011.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 "Biography of Peter Kinder". Office of the Lieutenant Governor. Retrieved August 19, 2011.
  3. 1 2 Glaser, Rachel (December 17, 2008). "Kinder: The Lone Republican". Missouri Digital News. Retrieved May 29, 2012.
  4. Griffin, Marshall (November 7, 2012). "Kinder Wins Third Term As Missouri Lt. Governor". St. Louis Public Radio. Retrieved August 20, 2014.
  5. Pistor, Nicholas J.C. (July 12, 2015). "Peter Kinder will seek Missouri governor's office in 2016". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved September 20, 2015.
  6. "Peter Kinder". Columbia Missourian. Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  7. Schaper, Bob (October 2004). "Out-State Booster Is Good for Business". St. Louis Commerce Magazine. Retrieved June 2, 2012. His first job was as a 'gopher' for then-Missouri Attorney General John Danforth.
  8. "Eulogy For The Late Honorable Bill Emerson". Sunlight Foundation. June 27, 1996. Retrieved June 2, 2012. [Emerson's] campaign manager in 1980 was Peter Kinder
  9. Rust, Gary (August 26, 2011). "Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder". Southeast Missourian. Days after earning his law degree and passing the Missouri Bar exam in February, 1980, he plunged into managing the old THenth District congressional campaign. Republicans hadn't won a congressional race there since 1928, but that campaign upended a six-term incumbent, electing Bill Emerson.
  10. "Rush Remembers: Mary Frances Hunter Kinder". 2008-01-09. Retrieved 2014-04-05.
  11. Rasa, Randy (January 28, 2009). "Tour of Missouri 2009 Route Announced". Kansas Cyclist. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  12. Revels, Wesley (June 8, 2008). "Tour of Missouri, One Day and Four New Cities Added, St. Joseph Will Host the Grand Depart!". Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  13. 1 2 Hugh, Brent (May 27, 2010). "Tour of Missouri set to cancel for 2010". Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  14. Laymance, Reid (May 28, 2010). "Tour of Missouri canceled for 2010". Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  15. Associated, Press (May 27, 2010). "Tour of Missouri Canceled". New York Times. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  16. "Office of Advocacy and Assistance for Seniors". Retrieved May 29, 2012.
  17. Messenger, Tony (August 4, 2010). "Prop C passes overwhelmingly". Retrieved May 29, 2012.
  18. 1 2 3 4 Fenske, Sarah (August 9, 2011). "Penthouse Pet Dishes on Peter Kinder: 'He Was One of My Best Customers'". Riverfront Times. Retrieved May 2, 2012.
  19. 1 2 3 4 Wagman, Jake (August 18, 2012). "Peter Kinder explains 'romantic attraction' at a strip club". Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  20. Wagman, Jake (April 3, 2011). "Kinder spends time in St. Louis, courtesy of taxpayers". Retrieved April 10, 2012.
  21. 1 2 3 4 Kelly, Brian (April 3, 2011). "Kinder Says Hotel Bills Legitimate, Audited". CBS St. Louis. Retrieved May 29, 2012.
  22. "Kinder to reimburse state for hotel costs". Columbia Missourian. Associated Press. April 9, 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2012.
  23. 1 2 3 Mannies, Jo (April 26, 2011). "Kinder uses own money to repay state for hotel lodgings, blasts court ruling". St. Louis Beacon. Retrieved May 29, 2012.
  24. Mann, Jennifer (March 29, 2015). "Police representative says DOJ's "band of marauders" concealed truth about Ferguson shooting". Saint Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
  25. "Peter Kinder rips Jay Nixon on Ferguson crisis". The Kansas City Star. August 18, 2014. Retrieved September 20, 2015. Missouri Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder roundly criticized Gov. Jay Nixon’s handling of Ferguson Monday morning
  26. "Missouri Governor's Deputy Slams Him For Not Deploying More Troops In Ferguson". Business Insider. November 25, 2014. Retrieved September 20, 2015. Missouri Lt. Governor Peter Kinder (R) tore into Gov. Jay Nixon (D) on Tuesday morning for keeping National Guard troops away 'while Ferguson burned'
  27. 1 2 Martosko, David (November 25, 2014). "'False and absurd': Missouri governor fires back against his lieutenant for saying Obama administration kept National Guard out of Ferguson as rioters torched the town". Daily Mail. Retrieved September 20, 2015. Nixon officially mobilized the Missouri National Guard a week ago but their duties on Monday were restricted to keeping the peace at a courthouse, patrolling the outskirts of town and preventing disturbances in other suburbs. Only Tuesday morning did the guard's camouflaged humvees roll down West Florissant Avenue where rioters had looted, torched and smashed countless businesses – and fired weapons in the direction of first responders.
  28. Horwitz, Sari; Lowery, Wesley (November 21, 2014). "Holder frustrated with Mo. governor over actions before Ferguson grand jury decision". The Washington Post. Retrieved September 20, 2015. Holder also expressed concerns privately about Gov. Jay Nixon’s decision this week to declare a state of emergency at a news conference and activate the National Guard.
  29. Pistor, Nicholas J.C. (July 12, 2015). "Peter Kinder will seek Missouri governor's office in 2016". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved September 20, 2015.
  30. McDermott, Kevin (August 11, 2015). "Republican Kinder ahead of Democrat Koster in early Missouri governor poll". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved September 20, 2015.
  31. Helling, Dave (April 1, 2016). "New poll: Clinton beats Trump in Missouri; Blunt beats Kander". The Buzz. The Kansas City Star. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  32. McDermott, Kevin (June 27, 2016). "With Koster sitting on millions, Missouri Democrats' four-way governor contest really isn't". St. Louis Post Dispatch. Retrieved July 5, 2016.
  33. "State of Missouri, Primary 2016, August 2, 2016: Unofficial Results". Retrieved August 3, 2016.
  34. "County by county: How Greitens won". Retrieved August 3, 2016.
  35. McDermott, Kevin (August 3, 2016). "Greitens wins pricey GOP battle for governor". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
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Political offices
Preceded by
Joe Maxwell
Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Succeeded by
Mike Parson
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