Heard on the Hill: In Need of a Calculator

Posted July 1, 2011 at 5:51pm

Former Missouri Treasurer Sarah Steelman is kind of bad at math.

The Republican, who is challenging Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) in 2012, touts her economic background and state treasurer experience in her campaign literature.

According to her campaign website, Steelman has been “responsible for the management of more than $19 billion in Missouri’s annual revenue and managed the investment of over $3 billion in long- and short-term investments in the state’s portfolio.”

In addition, while she was a state Senator, Steelman sat on the Government Accountability and Fiscal Oversight Committee. She even received her degree in economics.

So it was a wee bit surprising when Steelman emailed her supporters for help and the numbers didn’t add up.

“I am running for the U.S. Senate against Senator Claire McCaskill because, like you, I am worried about the future of our country and whether our kids will have the same opportunities that we had,” she says in the email. “Like all liberals, [McCaskill] believes that more spending and bigger government are the solutions to every problem facing our country … WE HAVE TO STOP THIS MADNESS!”

Whoa, OK! We’ll bite. How can we help?

“I need 1000 friends to contribute $100 each to raise $10,000 by midnight [Thursday]. That will send a strong message to McCaskill to STOP THE MADNESS. I would greatly appreciate your help,” the email said.

We punched those numbers in a magic number machine and found that 1,000 people each donating $100 adds up to $100,000, which is, well, more than $10,000.

“It was a typo,” Sam Steelman, the campaign manager and oldest son of the candidate, tells HOH. Apparently Sam meant to ask 1,000 people to donate $10 each, but added an extra zero by mistake. Oopsie daisy!