Peter Kinder

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Peter Kinder
Alternate Federal Co-Chairman of the
Delta Regional Authority
In office
September 8, 2017 – June 1, 2018
PresidentDonald Trump
Preceded byMichael G. Marshall
Succeeded byLeslie Durham[1]
46th Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
In office
January 10, 2005 – January 9, 2017
GovernorMatt Blunt
Jay Nixon
Preceded byJoe Maxwell
Succeeded byMike Parson
President pro tempore of the
Missouri Senate
In office
February 5, 2001 – January 5, 2005
Preceded byEdward Quick[2]
Succeeded byMichael R. Gibbons[3]
Member of the Missouri Senate
from the 27th district
In office
January 6, 1993 – January 5, 2005
Preceded byJohn Dennis
Succeeded byJason Crowell
Personal details
Born (1954-05-12) May 12, 1954 (age 69)
Cape Girardeau, Missouri, U.S.
Political partyRepublican

Peter Dickson Kinder (born May 12, 1954) is an American lawyer and politician who served as the 46th Lieutenant Governor of Missouri from 2005 to 2017.[4][5] He was appointed as a co-chairman of the Delta Regional Authority in August 2017,[6] serving in that post until he resigned in June 2018.

Kinder was first elected lieutenant governor in 2004, succeeding Joe Maxwell,[5] and was re-elected in 2008 at the same time Democrat Jay Nixon was elected governor.[5] 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.[7] Despite the generally poor election year for Republicans, Kinder carried 109 of Missouri's 114 counties.[5]

Considered the front-runner in the 2012 Republican gubernatorial primary, Kinder 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.[8] In July 2015, Kinder announced his entry into the 2016 gubernatorial election; he was later defeated in the Republican primary by Eric Greitens.[9]

Education and early career[edit]

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.[5] He received his J.D. degree from St. Mary's University School of Law in San Antonio, Texas in 1979 and was admitted to the Missouri Bar in 1980.[5]

In 1972, fresh out of high school, Kinder worked for former U.S. Sen. Jack Danforth's re-election bid for Missouri attorney general.[10][11] 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.[12] It was the first time a Republican won in southeast Missouri for U.S. Congress since 1928.[13]

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.[5] He returned to Missouri and worked as an attorney and real estate specialist for hotel developer Charles Drury of Drury Industries.[5] In 1987 Kinder became associate publisher of the Southeast Missourian newspaper, where he wrote weekly columns and editorials.[5]

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.[citation needed] His mother, who died on January 4, 2008, sang duets with the mother of Rush Limbaugh for 50 years; Rush Limbaugh attended the funeral.[14]

Political career[edit]

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.[5] 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.[5] Kinder was the first Republican president pro tempore in the Missouri Senate in 53 years.[5] In 2004 he sought and won election as lieutenant governor, narrowly defeating Bekki Cook (D-Cape Girardeau).

Tour of Missouri[edit]

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.[5] The week-long (6 days in 2007), 600+ mile event[15] first took place in 2007, with Kinder as its chairman.[5] The race was extended to seven days for 2008 and 2009.[5] The race ran annually from 2007 to 2009 and was the third highest profile domestic race in the United States.[16] The Tour of Missouri was one of the top stage races outside of Europe and brought in athletes from over 20 countries.[17] During its three-year run, the race attracted an estimated 1.2 million spectators and created a direct economic impact of $80 million.[17] The Tour of Missouri was cancelled from 2010 by the Missouri Tourism Commission.[18][19] Funding for the tour was described as a power struggle between Kinder and Governor Nixon.

Healthcare policy[edit]

Kinder was reelected in November 2008.[7] He led a lawsuit by Missouri citizens against the federal healthcare law.[5] Kinder's lawsuit sought to have the individual mandate declared unconstitutional.[5] On August 4, 2010, Missouri voters passed Proposition C, rejecting the federal law's mandate to purchase health insurance, by 71%.[20]

Alleged relationship with exotic dancer[edit]

In August 2011, The 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 gentleman's club around 1994.[21] 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.[21] 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.[21][22]

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.[22] 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.[21] 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.[22] Kinder stated that Chapman's story was part of a "partisan smear" to derail his campaign for governor.[22] Kinder further said that Democrats tried to use similar tactics against him in his 2008 campaign for lieutenant governor.[22]

Hotel expenses and repayment[edit]

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.[23] 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.[24] 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.[24] 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."[24] 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.[24] 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.[25] Due to concerns over campaign finance laws, Kinder ultimately chose not to use campaign funds and instead repaid the money personally.[26] Kinder elected to repay $52,320, the entire amount that he had been reimbursed by the state for in-state travel since 2005.[26]

Shooting of Michael Brown[edit]

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."[27] Kinder also repeatedly accused Missouri Governor Jay Nixon of reckless disregard and lack of leadership during the Ferguson riots.[28][29]

2016 campaign[edit]

Kinder announced in the Ferguson/Dellwood area in July 2015 that he would seek election to the Missouri governor's office in 2016.[30] Following his announcement, an August 2015 Public Policy Polling poll showed that Peter Kinder led Democratic candidate Chris Koster 40% to 37%.[31] 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.[32] In late June 2016, Kinder was trailing the three other Republican primary candidates in fundraising, having raised $1.5 million.[33] The other Republican candidates, Greitens, Brunner, and Hanaway, had collected $6.2, $5.7, and $3.4 million, respectively.

A negative attack ad campaign by LG PAC during summer 2016 implied that it supported Kinder[34][35][36] despite Kinder's pledge to campaign cleanly. The PAC was secretly associated with Greitens.[37] Kinder later called it the dirtiest political trick he'd witnessed in his career.[38]

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.[39][40] When his term as lieutenant governor expired in January 2017, Kinder went out of public office for the first time since his election to the state Senate in 1992.[41]

Later service[edit]

In a February 2017 interview with Cape Girardeau's KFVS-TV, Kinder said he was "considering a couple private sector opportunities" in Missouri, had been offered a consulting position, and had discussed a few potential positions to help the Trump administration.[42]

In August 2017, President Trump appointed Kinder as a co-chairman of the Delta Regional Authority, a federal economic development board serving over 250 counties and parishes in eight states near the Mississippi River.[6][43] By October 2017, Kinder had directed more than $500,000 in cuts to DRA administrative expenses, which had previously taken 8.6 percent of the agency's $30 million budget.[44] Kinder acted as head of the DRA until Chris Caldwell of Arkansas was confirmed and sworn in to its higher co-chairman role in January 2018.[45][46] Kinder resigned from the DRA on June 1, 2018, saying he plans to work in the private sector and remain in Cape Girardeau.[47]

Electoral history[edit]

For Governor[edit]

2016 Republican Primary Election for Governor of Missouri[48]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Eric Greitens 236,481 34.56%
Republican John Brunner 169,620 24.79%
Republican Peter Kinder 141,629 20.70%
Republican Catherine Hanaway 136,521 19.95%
Total votes 684,251 100.00%

As Lt. Governor[edit]

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[edit]

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


  1. ^ "President Biden Appoints Leslie Durham as Delta Regional Authority Alternate Federal Co-Chairwoman". Delta Regional Authority. November 9, 2021. Retrieved May 22, 2023.
  2. ^ "Our Campaigns – MO State Senate President Pro Tempore Race – Feb 05, 2001".
  3. ^ "Our Campaigns – MO State Senate President Pro Tempore Race – Jan 08, 2003".
  4. ^ "History of the Office of Lieutenant Governor". State of Missouri Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder. Archived from the original on September 3, 2011. Retrieved August 19, 2011.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q "Biography of Peter Kinder". Office of the Lieutenant Governor. Archived from the original on September 3, 2011. Retrieved August 19, 2011.
  6. ^ a b Moreau, Andrew (August 11, 2017). "Peter Dickson Kinder of Missouri is named DRA Alternate Federal Co-Chairman" (Press release). Delta Regional Authority. Retrieved September 12, 2017.
  7. ^ a b Glaser, Rachel (December 17, 2008). "Kinder: The Lone Republican". Missouri Digital News. Retrieved May 29, 2012.
  8. ^ Griffin, Marshall (November 7, 2012). "Kinder Wins Third Term As Missouri Lt. Governor". St. Louis Public Radio. Retrieved August 20, 2014.
  9. ^ 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.
  10. ^ "Peter Kinder". Columbia Missourian. Archived from the original on April 2, 2015. Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  11. ^ Schaper, Bob (October 2004). "Out-State Booster Is Good for Business". St. Louis Commerce Magazine. Archived from the original on June 10, 2009. Retrieved June 2, 2012. His first job was as a 'gopher' for then-Missouri Attorney General John Danforth.
  12. ^ "Eulogy For The Late Honorable Bill Emerson". Sunlight Foundation. June 27, 1996. Archived from the original on April 14, 2013. Retrieved June 2, 2012. [Emerson's] campaign manager in 1980 was Peter Kinder
  13. ^ 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.
  14. ^ "Rush Remembers: Mary Frances Hunter Kinder". January 9, 2008. Retrieved April 5, 2014.
  15. ^ Rasa, Randy (January 28, 2009). "Tour of Missouri 2009 Route Announced". Kansas Cyclist. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  16. ^ 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.
  17. ^ a b Hugh, Brent (May 27, 2010). "Tour of Missouri set to cancel for 2010". Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  18. ^ Laymance, Reid (May 28, 2010). "Tour of Missouri canceled for 2010". Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  19. ^ Associated, Press (May 27, 2010). "Tour of Missouri Canceled". New York Times. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  20. ^ Messenger, Tony (August 4, 2010). "Prop C passes overwhelmingly". Retrieved May 29, 2012.
  21. ^ a b c d Fenske, Sarah (August 9, 2011). "Penthouse Pet Dishes on Peter Kinder: 'He Was One of My Best Customers'". Riverfront Times. Archived from the original on September 11, 2014. Retrieved May 2, 2012.
  22. ^ a b c d e Wagman, Jake (August 18, 2011). "Peter Kinder explains 'romantic attraction' at a strip club". Retrieved January 10, 2018.
  23. ^ Wagman, Jake (April 3, 2011). "Kinder spends time in St. Louis, courtesy of taxpayers". Retrieved April 10, 2012.
  24. ^ a b c d Kelly, Brian (April 3, 2011). "Kinder Says Hotel Bills Legitimate, Audited". CBS St. Louis. Retrieved May 29, 2012.
  25. ^ "Kinder to reimburse state for hotel costs". Columbia Missourian. Associated Press. April 9, 2011. Archived from the original on July 29, 2012. Retrieved June 17, 2012.
  26. ^ a b Wagman, Jake (April 26, 2011). "Kinder pays $52,000 for hotel stays". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved January 15, 2018.
  27. ^ 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.
  28. ^ "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
  29. ^ "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'
  30. ^ 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.
  31. ^ McDermott, Kevin (August 11, 2015). "Republican Kinder ahead of Democrat Koster in early Missouri governor poll". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved September 20, 2015.
  32. ^ 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.
  33. ^ 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.
  34. ^ Mannies, Jo (June 28, 2016). "You can't find out who paid for new attack ads on Missouri TV. Laws keep them secret". St Louis Public Radio. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
  35. ^ Hancock, Jason (June 29, 2018). "Dark-money groups that helped elect Eric Greitens now facing FEC complaint". The Kansas City Star. Retrieved August 20, 2019.
  36. ^ Davis, Wa;ker and Casey Millburg (August 2, 2016). "Super PAC Showdown in the Show Me State". Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. Retrieved August 20, 2019.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  37. ^ Curtis, Tim (June 18, 2016). "New information links LG PAC and Greitens". Missouri Times.
  38. ^ Ward, Vicky (March 15, 2018). "Swamp Thing". Highline. Retrieved August 20, 2019.
  39. ^ "State of Missouri, Primary 2016, August 2, 2016: Unofficial Results". Archived from the original on August 6, 2016. Retrieved August 3, 2016.
  40. ^ "County by county: How Greitens won". August 3, 2016. Retrieved August 3, 2016.
  41. ^ McDermott, Kevin (August 3, 2016). "Greitens wins pricey GOP battle for governor". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
  42. ^ Maloney, Mary-Ann; Ruch, Amber (February 14, 2017). "What's next for Peter Kinder". KFVS-TV. 38:45–40:38. Retrieved January 16, 2018.
  43. ^ Lisenby, Ashley (August 10, 2017). "White House appoints former Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder to federal economic development board". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved September 12, 2017.
  44. ^ Bliss, Mark (October 26, 2017). "Kinder cuts $500,000 from Delta Regional Authority operations". Southeast Missourian. Retrieved January 16, 2018.
  45. ^ "Senate confirms Arkansan to lead Delta Regional Authority". Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Associated Press. December 22, 2017. Retrieved January 16, 2018.
  46. ^ "Chris Caldwell sworn in as federal co-chairman of the Delta Regional Authority" (Press release). Delta Regional Authority. January 12, 2018. Retrieved January 16, 2018.
  47. ^ "Kinder quits federal post on Delta Regional Authority, bows out of politics". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. June 16, 2018. Retrieved October 30, 2018.
  48. ^ "Missouri Gubernatorial Primary results". Missouri Secretary of State. August 2, 2016. Retrieved November 30, 2016.

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by Republican nominee for Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
2004, 2008, 2012
Succeeded by
Missouri Senate
Preceded by Member of the Missouri Senate
from the 27th district

Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by President pro tempore of the Missouri Senate
Succeeded by
Preceded by Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
Succeeded by