Governor Blunt’s announcement that he would not seek a second term has shaken the Capitol like no other announcement before. Prominent Republicans in the legislature use one word more than any other to describe their reaction: shock.
"I was surprised," says Senate leader Michael Gibbons (R-Kirkwood), "I certainly did not see that coming. I don’t think anyone did."
That includes House Speaker Rod Jetton (R-Marble Hill), who participated in the telephone conference call in which Blunt told his fellow Republican leaders that he would not seek re-election.
"It was very unexpected," says Jetton, "I was a little bit surprised, obviously."
Though it’s late in the political game, Jetton feels confident a Republican can step in and run a good gubernatorial race.