Election Coverage 2018 | St. Louis Public Radio

Election Coverage 2018

Voter turnout for Missouri's 2nd District contest between Republican Ann Wagner (center left) and Democrat Cort VanOstran (center right) could tip the balance in the Senate race between Republican Josh Hawley (left) and Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill.
Carolina Hidalgo, Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

In Missouri, not all congressional districts are created equal.

Which is why both major U.S. Senate candidates – and their national allies – are paying significant attention to the 2nd District, which spans from south St. Louis County to St. Charles County. It also includes a sliver of Jefferson County.

For almost a decade, the 2nd District has produced more votes than its seven counterparts. The 2nd District also includes many of the suburban women voters that both sides covet.

Under the new law, registered voters can bring one of four IDs to the polling place: a state-issued driver's license, a state-issued non-driver's license, a U.S. passport or a military ID.
Rici Hoffarth | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated Oct. 10 with statement from Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft -- A Cole County judge has rejected a sworn statement that Missouri voters who wanted to use non-photo forms of identification had to sign in order to vote.

But Richard Callahan’s ruling, issued Tuesday, says most of the identification requirement the Missouri Legislature created in 2016 “is within its constitutional prerogative under the Missouri Constitution."

Jumira Moore, 8, watches as her mother, Timira Saunders, fills out a ballot at Central Baptist Church in St. Louis on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

In St. Louis and St. Louis County, officials are seeing people register to vote at roughly the same rate as other midterm elections, but in St. Charles County, the head election official is seeing a surge in applications — and absentee ballots.

Potential voters in Missouri have through Wednesday to register for the Nov. 6. election. There are several ways that people can apply — including going online or filling out an application at a county election authority.

Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander greets supporters as they welcome him to the stage at The Pageant on Oct. 28, 2016.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies look at three things playing a big role in Missouri’s 2018 election cycle.

The first is debate over pre-existing conditions between U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill and her GOP opponent Josh Hawley. It stems from Hawley’s decision to be a part of a lawsuit seeking to upend the Affordable Care Act.

Robert Butler, candidate for 22nd District Senate seat Oct. 2018
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Democrat Robert Butler is the latest guest on Politically Speaking. He joins St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Abigail Censky to talk about his bid for the 22nd District Senate seat.

Butler is running against incumbent Sen. Paul Wieland, an Imperial Republican who first captured the Jefferson County-based district in 2014. Wieland’s episode of Politically Speaking was posted on Monday.

Attorney General Josh Hawley speaks at a Missouri GOP office in south St. Louis County on Aug. 30, 2018.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley is calling for a special counsel to investigate whether U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein and her staff improperly handled sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Hawley, Missouri’s GOP nominee for the U.S. Senate, is joining a number of Republicans who are upset over how the letter from Christine Blasey Ford was leaked to the press several weeks ago.

Missouri state Sen. Paul Wieland, R-Imperial
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Sen. Paul Wieland is the latest guest on Politically Speaking. He talked with St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum, Jo Mannies and Abigail Censky about his re-election bid in Missouri’s 22nd District Senate seat.

The Imperial Republican represents a portion of Jefferson County. His race against Democrat Robert Butler is one of the most competitive Senate races in Missouri — and could give a sense of how other statewide campaigns shake out.

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley appeals to supporters Monday at a rally in Imperial, Mo., to promote his bid for the U.S. Senate.
Jo Mannies I St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Republicans gathered this weekend in Jefferson County to celebrate their statewide success in reaching 1 million potential voters, either in person or by phone.

And there’s at least one reason why the GOP is holding the event in Jefferson County:

“It’s pretty fair to say that so goes Jefferson County, so goes Missouri,’’ said Whitney Smith, Missouri communications director for the Republican National Committee.

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley appeals to supporters Monday at a rally in Imperial, Mo., to promote his bid for the U.S. Senate.
Jo Mannies I St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies look at the importance of Jefferson County in this year’s statewide election.

Whenever there’s a competitive statewide election, Jefferson County often gets a lot of attention. That’s because voters there almost always pick winners of statewide elections — as they did in 2016 and 2012.

Republican Senate candidate Josh Hawley speaks on Sept. 27, 2018, in St. Charles. Hawley called the hearings around Brett Kavanaugh a 'circus.'
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Soon after beginning a stump speech to GOP volunteers in St. Charles County, Republican Senate hopeful Josh Hawley minced no words about what he thought about Thursday’s high-profile hearings of Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination.

As Kavanaugh was speaking before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Hawley asked the Republican faithful if they were “watching this circus in Washington.”

Patrice Billings, the Democratic candidate for the 2nd District Senate seat.
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Democrat Patrice Billings is the latest guest on the Politically Speaking podcast. The St. Charles County resident talked to St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies about her bid for Missouri’s 2nd Senatorial District seat.

Billings worked for nearly three decades as a helicopter pilot for the St. Louis County Police Department. She is squaring off against Sen. Bob Onder, a Lake Saint Louis Republican who recorded an episode of Politically Speaking earlier this month.

Illinois Congressman Mike Bost, R-Murphysboro
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Illinois Congressman Mike Bost joined St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies on Politically Speaking to talk about his bid for a third term.

The Murphysboro Republican has represented Illinois’ 12th District since 2015. He’s running against Democrat Brendan Kelly, who is St. Clair County’s state’s attorney. The Bost-Kelly race is expected to be one of the most competitive congressional races in the nation.

Participants in the East Central College Franklin County Candidate Forum pose for a photo on Thursday, Sept. 21, 2018.
Jay Scherder I East Central College

East Central College hosted a candidate forum on Thursday night featuring numerous contenders for local, state and federal offices.

St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum moderated the event, which featured questions on pressing public policy issues — as well as ballot initiatives that voters will consider on the Nov. 6 election.

Gage Skidmore | Flickr

Both of Missouri’s senators want their colleagues to investigate allegations of sexual assault against President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee.

It comes as Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the high court was expected to get a key vote later this week.

Former U.S. Sen. Tim Talent
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Former U.S. Sen. Jim Talent joins St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies on the latest episode of Politically Speaking. The Republican served in various federal and state capacities for more than 20 years.

While Talent is no longer a candidate himself, he is leading the charge against a constitutional amendment known as Clean Missouri.

Green Party candidate Jo Crain, Republican candidate Attorney General Josh Hawley, independent candidate Craig O'Dear and Sen. Claire McCaskill participate in a candidate forum in Maryland Heights on Sept. 14, 2018.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

U.S. Sen Claire McCaskill and state Attorney General Josh Hawley went toe-to-toe on health care, the Supreme Court, immigration and tariffs in their first forum of the campaign Friday.

Hawley, a Republican, said the public will choose between a “heartland way of life’’ and a “radical left-wing agenda.”

McCaskill, a Democrat, said the public should focus on “the ones who actually have a track record of working in a bipartisan way and actually getting things done.”

State Auditor Nicole Galloway, left, and her Republican challenger Saundra McDowell participated in a debate Friday.
Carolina Hidalgo I St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri’s state auditor candidates tangled Friday over the role of the job in their first — and possibly only — joint appearance.

They also differed over the fate of a disputed ballot measure called Clean Missouri.

 

House Republicans talk during the last day of the legislative session. May 17, 2017
File photo I Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

A Cole County judge ruled Friday that a bid to overhaul the state’s ethics and state legislative redistricting laws contained too many subjects — and therefore can’t appear on the November ballot.

Proponents of the Clean Missouri initiative are appealing the ruling. But the clock is ticking for judges to make a final decision.

U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen addresses election officials from roughly a dozen states at an election security summit held in St. Louis County.
Jo Mannies/St. Louis Public Radio

As some election officials see it, public fears about the hacking of American elections are almost as serious of an issue as the actual threat of such hacking.

“The product we’re trying to generate here is voter confidence,’’ said Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap at an election security conference Monday in St. Louis County.

St. Clair County State's Attorney Brendan Kelly
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Brendan Kelly, the Democratic candidate in the 12th Congressional District, talked extensively with St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum about his decision to enter the highly-competitive congressional contest.

Kelly is squaring off against Congressman Mike Bost, who became one of the first Republicans to represent the 12th District in generations when he captured the seat in 2014. The Bost-Kelly contest is expected to be one of the most competitive congressional races in the nation this year.

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