Beer Heiress Trudy Busch Valentine Has Several Million Reasons Why She Should Be Next Missouri Senator

State/Local Politics
Beer Heiress Trudy Busch Valentine Has Several Million Reasons Why She Should Be Next Missouri Senator

We’ve told you about the Missouri Republicans running for retiring Senator Roy Blunt’s seat, and they’re all awful. However, what about the sacrificial Democrats? We have some news on that front: St. Louis beer heiress Trudy Busch Valentine officially jumped into the race this week.

PREVIOUSLY: Missouri GOP Senate Candidates Play 'Wheel Of Assh*le'

Are you thirsty for a candidate who’ll tell you that “our communities are strong but our politics are broken”? Well, she’s your gal. Yes, the GOP is a radical, anti-democratic cult of personality that might also get freaky on the down low, but Valentine suggests "we just need to talk to each other again.” We need something “different" but presumably not too different and a “new politics” that’ll greatly resemble the current old politics. No other moderate Democrat has considered that, and it’s damn refreshing.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports:

In a campaign video, Valentine recounted her childhood growing up at the iconic family estate, Grant's Farm, and highlighted her financial contributions to the nursing program at St. Louis University.

Valentine is the daughter of the late Anheuser-Busch beer baron August “Gussie” Busch Jr., who died in 1989. Her mother, Gertrude “Trudy” Busch, was Busch’s third wife.

Newspapers seem to only include the cutesy nicknames for rich people. Starbucks barista Voni Jackson’s family don’t have enough bank for her nickname “Von-Dog” to ever see print.

Valentine’s campaign video kicks off like a nature video: “Spring ... it means rebirth, promise that life goes on.” And this video goes on ... and on, so we might as well crack open a beer while watching. She says some nice things about nurses and the medical profession.

Valentine is a major Democratic donor and fundraiser. According to Democratic pollster and talk show host Michael Kelley, one of Valentine’s strengths is that she’s aware she’s "lived a life of privilege but has also chosen a life of service.” She knows she’s rich but is willing to accept a public position of great power. It makes you misty. She has other attributes, as well.

“She is a female,” Kelley added. “That plays to a huge advantage. She’s clearly going to be well-funded. She’s got billions of dollars worth of name identification.”

There are 10 other Democrats running for the Senate seat in a state with at least twice that number of Democratic voters. One of the candidates, former state Sen. Scott Sifton, immediately dropped out and threw his support behind Valentine once she announced her candidacy.

PREVIOUSLY: MO Senate Candidate Eric Greitens Is Somehow Even More Trash Than We Knew

Sifton said the party needs to unite behind Valentine, who’s never held political office, to defeat Eric Greitens, who’s still the GOP frontrunner despite his documented grossness. Valentine is boldly positioning herself in the political middle and noted in her campaign launch video that “most Missouri families include Democrats, Independents, and Republicans. Mine sure does.” Well, let’s hope she carries at least two-thirds of her family’s vote.

William Hall, adjunct professor of political science at Webster University, insists “there’s a desire to get new faces into the race; faces that we in political science say are more centrist ... with the entrance of a candidate with name recognition and what appears to be some resources, it could very well be a game-changer.”

The last Democratic senator from Missouri was Claire McCaskill, who considered herself a “raging centrist.” However, Democrats have struggled with appearing out of touch and unable to relate with “normal” voters. Meanwhile, Republicans are running as faux populists. Is a beer heiress truly our best bet?

Complicating matters is this story from the Intercept, which someone might actually read. In 1977, Busch was crowned “Queen of Love and Beauty” at the racist-ass Veiled Prophet Ball.

The 1977 ceremony marked a special anniversary for the Veiled Prophet Organization, a secret society of Missouri elites dedicated to maintaining white supremacy and unchecked corporate power. It was founded by former Confederate officers in the wake of the Great Railroad Strike of 1877 — an effort to forge a populist, multiracial working-class coalition to oppose the era’s robber barons — and began hosting the ball as its annual celebration after federal troops smashed the worker revolt. A hundred years later, the affair was less of a secret but no less controversial.

Yikes. Black and Jewish people weren’t allowed to join the Veiled Prophet organization until 1979, when I presume most of the white members moved to an organization in the suburbs. Civil rights groups had protested the ball for years prior to Busch’s crowning.

Busch told the Intercept:

I believe in the importance of working together and healing divisions — and that starts with acknowledging my own past shortcomings. I failed to fully grasp the situation. I should have known better, and I deeply regret and I apologize that my actions hurt others. My life and work are way beyond that, and as a candidate for Missouri’s next US Senator, I pledge to work tirelessly to be a force for progress in healing the racial divisions of our country.

Look, 1977 was a long time ago. I was three and possibly still a slave, so we can probably cut Busch some slack even if salivating GOP strategists won’t. Hey, maybe if she manages to pull off an upset, Busch will go fully woke like former Virginia Governor Ralph Northam after his blackface klansman photo scandal.

[Intercept / St. Louis Post-Dispatch]

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Stephen Robinson

Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. Once, he wrote a novel called “Mahogany Slade,” which you should read or at least buy. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."


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