St. Louis Public Radio News
6:22 pm
Wed August 26, 2009

Carnahan reacts to guilty pleas

St. Louis, MO. – Democratic Congressman Russ Carnahan commented Wednesday on the felony pleas, and subsequent resignations of two-state legislators in connection to his 2004 congressional campaign.

Up until now Russ Carnahan has refrained from commenting on the rumors surrounding former Senator Jeff Smith and State Representative Steve Brown.

Smith and Brown pleaded guilty Tuesday to obstruction of justice charges for lying about their involvement in producing anonymous campaign flyers.

Carnahan says his feelings on the issue are two-fold.

"On one hand it's very sad to see this result for some very promising officials, but on the other hand I think our system did work," Carnahan said.

Carnahan says he doesn't take the incident personally.

Several St. Louis Democrats already are positioning to replace Smith and Brown in the Legislature.

Potential candidates for the 4th District Senate seat include State House Members T.D. El-Amin, Jamilah Nasheed and Rachel Storch.

Possible contenders for the 73rd State House seat include Richmond Heights Councilwoman Gina Mitten, and Stacey Newman, who lost to Brown in last year's Democratic primary.