Steelman Lashes Out in Debate, Hits Brunner for Drunk Driving Arrest

 After Week of Bad Press, Steelman Launches Desperate Attacks

Jefferson City, Mo.— Following a week of bad press across Missouri and America, Sarah Steelman got desperate today and launched her first direct attacks against John Brunner during a debate in St. Joseph. In a late exchange about tort reform, Sarah Steelman hit Brunner for his 2004 drunk driving arrest. Meanwhile, Todd Akin once again set the standard for holding the most conservative positions in the Senate primary.
“After spending the week having to explain why she thinks death threats are protected speech, it’s no surprise that Sarah Steelman wanted to change the subject and launched her first direct attacks against John Brunner at today’s debate,” said Caitlin Legacki, Missouri Democratic Party spokeswoman. “When they’re not launching personal attacks against each other, Sarah Steelman and John Brunner continue trying to prove that they’re just as conservative as Todd Akin, whose policies are too far beyond the mainstream for this state. Missourians expect their candidates to behave like adults, but Brunner and Steelman's attacks show they're increasingly desperate to gain some traction in this race.”
In response to a question about why she voted against a specific tort reform bill in the Missouri State Senate, Steelman made a clear swipe at Brunner’s 2004 arrest for drunk driving:
“I have voted for one tort reform bill after another as a State Senator. This particular bill I did not vote for. I would have voted for it had a couple things been changed in that bill, and one of those was a protection for drunk drivers. I wasn't going to allow that bill to pass because it protected drunk drivers. And I'm sorry Mr. Brunner thinks that that's okay, but I actually read these bills -- I look at them -- and I make sure that what I believe in, and what I see in the bill, is best for Missourians.”
According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, “Brunner was arrested in August 2004 after a sheriff's deputy who pulled him over for speeding on Highway 94 detected liquor on his breath…After spending the night in jail, Brunner's drivers license was suspended for three months.” [St. Louis Post-Dispatch8/15/11]
Earlier in the debate, Steelman also attacked Brunner for his failure to vote in the 2004 election.