John “The Weasel” Brunner

Reading Time: 1 minutes

RADAR: Did you lose something, sir?
HAWKEYE: Hi, Stinky.
RADAR: Uh, sir, that’s the sort of name that kind of sticks with a fella. I’d appreciate it if you’d just call me by my given nickname.


Some names stick with a fella.

A friend emailed the link and this note:

Brunner is indeed a weasel

John Brunner, candidate for governor, surreptitiously recorded a phone conversation with his opponent Eric Greitens. Then, after the Kansas City Star reported that a Brunner confidant had set up an anti-Greitens website, Brunner released the recording to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

You can read all about it and listen to the recording here.

There were no smoking guns on the recording. Eric Greitens sounds angry about the website and about Brunner’s refusal to either confirm or deny complicity. (A woman can be heard in the background urging Brunner to deny, deny, deny, but Brunner never does.)

For his part, John Brunner simply evades the question and plants unverified information on the tape. Ya know, like Richard Nixon.

Brunner’s surreptitious recording and leak is sleazy, of course, and it’s just the kind of childish politics we expect from Missouri Republicans. Brunner was supposed to be above this kind of chicanery.

I doubt the episode will have a long shelf-life even though it provides perverse entertainment for Missouri politics geeks.

The only lasting effect will be a sticky nickname for Brunner: The Weasel.

  • Bill, I know you are supporting Eric Greitens for Governor of Missouri. I myself am staying out of the primary and may help the winner. The question I have is Greitens refused to answer Adam Sharp when he questioned about when he became a Republican. There is a video of the confrontation. As for the tape of John Brunner and Eric Greitens it showed Greitens to be a bully and wants things his way. As for the release of the tape I thought it was underhanded and sneaky and does not show highly of Brunner.
    There are other problems I have with Greitens. Why did Greitens not run as a Conservative Democrat against the leftist lib Chris Koster? Greitens charitable group is affiliated with the Clinton Global Initiative. Why would he want to be involved in that criminal enterprise? Greitens also believes in the hoax of climate change and there is video of that. Greitens supports a World Government. Other questions that should be answered are: what is his position on immigration; on the refugee/migrant situation; and what is his position on Common Core? As I stated, I am staying out of the primary and may help the winner.

    • Greg,

      How does one really answer “when did you become a conservative?” I think most people who migrate from one ideology, particularly one adopted from family of origin, the change happens slowly. Reagan’s conversion took a decade or more.

      As for his organizations and their affiliations, I can’t answer. I do know that he formed the organizations before he recognized his political conversion and well before he decided to run for Governor.

      When it comes to his past statements, he was a Democrat and began as a fairly liberal Democrat. I’d be surprised if he didn’t say a few things that grate our ears.

      Bully? Really? Republicans are using the bully card now? What I heard was an angry man, angry because his opponent refused to acknowledge (or explicitly deny) connection to a website that attacks Greitens’ integrity. Abraham Lincoln was involved in a duel over less. And Greitens went straight to the source with his complaint. I can tell you that I’ve been far more hostile with people on the phone, including with friends.

      Why didn’t Greitens run as a Democrat? Because he finds the Democrat Party incompatible with his worldview. And, while I don’t know this, I suspect that Eric would consider it a lie to run as a Democrat with the intention of switching parties after the election.

      Finally, I’ve watched people migrate politically, including my wife and Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell. And Arianna Huffington. While every political conversion is unique, they share one thing in common: they don’t stop. At least later-in-life conversions never stop. However conservative Greitens is right now, he will be more conservative tomorrow. And more so next year.

      I have sat in a room with Eric on a couple of occasions. I have read his books. I have never met a person I’d rather follow. I know some of his policy mentors, and I trust them implicitly. I believe that Eric Greitens’ campaign presents Missourians with a rare historical opportunity to halt our country’s unravelling. I could be wrong, but I am taking this leap of faith with both feet.