Friday, Lt. Governor Peter Kinder announced via press release that he received a phone call that day from Springfield businessman John Q. Hammons "regarding his continuing care and the conduct" of his business, John Q. Hammons Hotels and Resorts. Friday's press release emphasized the Lieutenant Governor's role as "Missouri's Official Senior Advocate," and asked citizens to help him collect information on what's happening. Though words were chosen carefully, his spokesman clearly hinted at foul play. Asreported Friday by KY3:
"While we're not making any allegations of misconduct at this time, or pointing any fingers, we definitely are interested in finding out about the situation," said Gary McElyea, spokesman for the Lt. Governor's office.
The released asked for anyone with information that may be useful can be reported anonymously to Kinder's office at (573) 751-4727 or Missouri's Senior Hotline at (800) 392-0210.
"Depending on what information we receive, we will definitely be working with the proper authorities, if that's necessary, and at the end of this it's just a reminder to all of us to ensure that seniors wishes are being fulfilled," McElyea said.
And then today, Kinder staged a photo op in front of Hammons Field (home of the Springfield Cardinals) to
serve as the family's spokesperson during a difficult time get himself on the teevee news announcing that (1) he doesn't have any information to share about an investigation being conducted by the Department of Aging, and (2) the CEO of Hammons company, Jacquie Dowdy, "has legal authority to run the company and manage the affairs of its aging founder," and "Dowdy appears to be acting in the best interest of Hammons." Reported today by KY3:
...At a news conference outside Hammons Field, Kinder said Dowdy appears to be acting in the best interest of Hammons, who is 91 years old. Kinder is involved because his office is the state's official advocate for elderly people. Kinder said last week that his office received complaints via e-mail and telephone calls that Dowdy seized control of the hotel company and is sequestering Hammons from his friends and associates against his will.
So... why Kinder didn't so some checking before blasting out a press release and calling a press conference? I don't know a thing about Hammons' situation or his company or why people were fired after he became ill, but it sounds like Peter Kinder didn't know much either.
More evidence that this is all just a little bizarre: @PeterKinder, Chief of Staff @RichAuBuchon and spokesman @GMcElyea don't have a single tweet about Hammons or today's trip to Springfield.