Don’t believe for one second you’ve seen or heard the last of Jason Grill…
Reports that the Missouri State Rep may be finished in local politics are greatly exaggerated.
“There’s always a possibility that I could run for the same seat, for sure” Grill muses. “I enjoy being a public servant; I enjoy meeting people, going door-to-door and helping people with their problems. It could be in two years. It could be in four years. It could be for something else. I’m kind of leaving my options open.”
That after Grill and every Democrat running at the state or county level in the wilds of Platte County was sent packing in the recent election.
“You know the election cycle is bad when Emanuel Cleaver is up by only like a point with something like 90 percent reporting in the most Democratic area of the city,” Grill says. “But this might be a blessing in disguise, to be able to spend the next two years back here in Kansas City.”
Grill’s defeat brings down the curtain – for now anyway – on his two terms in the Missouri house.
“I really enjoyed the job,” he says. “We accomplished some things that are going to be important to people in their lives. And I was very bi-partisan – I voted with republicans and built some really good relationships. And I think that’s important in politics today.”
The reason Grill took a bullet?
“People are always connecting the local races to the national races,” Grill says. “And my opponent tried to portray that I was connected to President Obama and Nancy Pelosi and (Democrats) in congress, which was not the case. And I think that’s why a lot of incumbent Democrats in more conservative parts of the country couldn’t survive. Not just here, but all over the country. I mean, guys like Ike Skelton who is a very conservative Democrat.”
Which strikes Grill as ironic.
“Here’s the thing,” he says. “We already had a Republican legislature in Missouri, so really we just got more Republicans in office. And that’s what’s so frustrating. So people really weren’t reacting to state and local issues, they were reacting to national issues.”
Meanwhile back at the ranch, Grill will continue to practice law at the Kansas City firm of King Hershey and work as an adjunct professor teaching an MBA business course at Park University.
And as disappointing as his loss was, “I’ve seen such strong support from people since the election – both from Democrats and Republicans,” Grill says. “And it touched me. You know, there were a lot of people who came out and voted a straight ticket and there were a lot more Republicans than Democrats that voted this year.”
And if the current economic tealeaves prove correct and the economy bounces back under Obama, could be a different story in two years.
Speaking of which…
“There’s all kinds of funny stuff that happened in this election,” Grill says. “I sat out on street corners and we had a guy chase my campaign manager off of his property because he was a supporter of my opponent. It was just kind of scary because I had a campaign manager right out of college.
“And some of the flyers they used against me were pretty badly Photo shopped. Like pictures of Obama and me on a motorcycle with me riding behind him. They were so cartoonish, they were funny.”
But you know, hey – hey – if the economy roars back, the dems may be in the chips again two years and Grill might be able to use the biking with Obama ad in his next campaign.
“You never know,” Grill quips.