St. Louis County Executive-elect Steve Stenger outspent Republican rival Rick Stream by more than three-to-one in what appears to have been the closest contest for that office in decades.
Stenger — a Democrat who won by less than 1,900 votes — spent $3.34 million in his successful bid for the post, according to the final campaign-finance reports due Thursday. Stream reported spending $959,395.
Wednesday on “St. Louis on the Air,” we gathered our political reporters to recap Tuesday’s election. The consensus: Republicans ruled the night.
“It was a Republican bloodbath, nationally and regionally,” said Jo Mannies, St. Louis Public Radio political reporter. “But it also shows that St. Louis County is definitely Democratic turf because the only two Democratic candidates — big names — who remained standing were Steve Stenger and Jill Schupp.”
The 2014 mid-term election is over, but its impact on local and state politics could be long lasting.
That’s because Republicans -- who were already in firm control of the Missouri General Assembly – expanded their numbers in the House and Senate in part because they were able to crack the Democrats' once-sturdy strongholds in Jefferson County, southeast Missouri and northeast Missouri. In St. Louis County, Republicans also came close to electing a county executive for the first time since 1990 when Democrat Buzz Westfall ended 28 years of GOP control over the office.
Missouri Democrats took a beating on Tuesday in contests for the Missouri General Assembly, losing even more ground in the Missouri House and Senate — including a hotly-contested race for a vacant Jefferson County Senate seat.
A bright spot for Democrats was in St. Louis County, where State Rep. Jill Schupp, D-Creve Coeur, narrowly won a hard-fought contest for the 24th District Senate seat.
It’s somewhat instinctual for Missouri political reporters to describe every election as decisive, critical or groundbreaking. And to be fair, it’s not an unnatural impulse – since every Show Me State election year for the past couple of decades has featured a competitive statewide, U.S. Senate or presidential contest.
This year, though, state Auditor Tom Schweich likely won’t lose to his Libertarian or Constitution Party opponents, and the Missouri House and Senate will remain firmly in Republican hands. And there's no U.S. Senate contest.
The St. Louis area is home to Missouri’s arguably most competitive – and expensive – state Senate contests on the Nov. 4 ballot.
Both state parties, and their allies, have been pouring money into the battles for the 22nd District and 24th District seats. The 22nd District is in Jefferson County, while the 24th stretches across a large area of central and west St. Louis County.
The 24th District pits state Rep. Jill Schupp, D-Creve Coeur, versus Republican attorney Jay Ashcroft.
This week the Politically Speaking podcast crew welcomes Jill Schupp, the Democratic candidate for the state Senate in the 24th District.
The 24th District, which takes in a large area of central and west St. Louis County, is considered a politically swing district. As a result, the contest betweeen Schupp and GOP candidate Jay Ashcroft is seen as one of the state’s few legislative districts up for grabs on the Nov. 4 ballot. The post is currently held by Republican John Lamping, who is retiring.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon appears to be offering more political assistance to fellow Democrats competing for seats in the General Assembly, after years of embracing a lower campaign profile that even concerned some within his own party.
Tuesday night, Nixon stopped at a Democratic fundraiser in Frontenac to offer up a rousing endorsement of state Rep. Jill Schupp’s quest this fall for the state Senate in the 24th District, which takes in much of central St. Louis County.
Jay Ashcroft isn't exactly a stranger to the political process. After all, his father ran for -- and, numerous times, won -- congressional and statewide offices during his lengthy tenure in Missouri politics.
But the son of former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft admitted he was a bit nervous waiting to see if he emerged victorious in a three-way GOP primary for a St. Louis County-based state Senate seat. He said his "stomach was in knots" until he found out he had won.
"It was really humbling," said Ashcroft in a telephone interview.
Jay Ashcroft’s life is steeped in politics, even if he’s never run for political office before.
That may help explain why the son of a Republican icon is already airing TV ads for a state Senate contest that, on paper, leans Democratic.
Ashcroft is among three Republicans competing in the Aug. 5 primary for the right to challenge the sole Democrat, state Rep. Jill Schupp of Creve Coeur, in the fall. Also running is Libertarian Jim Higgins.