A nonpartisan organization that collects information about political candidates reports a large majority of Missouri candidates refuse to provide the information, no matter how often they are asked or who asks them. Project Vote Smart collects the information and makes it available on its website. For the last six weeks it has been trying to get information from Missouri’s candidates for the U.S. Senate, Congress, and the Legislature. The organization says only 30 percent of legislative candidates and only 44 percent of congressional candidates have made a good faith effort to respond. Project Board Chairman Adelaide Elm says the refusal to provide information says stomething about candidates and their campaigns. Elm says some candidates prefer manipulative advertising instead of providing facts for voters. In the Senate race, Jim Talent has responded; Jean Carnahan has not. Congressmen Akin, Gephardt, Skelton, Graves, Blunt and Hulshoff have refused. Most of their campaigns claim ignorance about why they didn’t. Spokesmen for Congressmen Skelton and Blunt say they get so many requests for information they can’t fill out all the forms – and further, their votes are public records.
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