Jimmie Matthews | St. Louis Public Radio

Jimmie Matthews

Lyda Krewson thanks her supporters, family and campaign staff after winning the Democratic mayoral primary election by 888 votes.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis Alderman Lyda Krewson emerged from a crowded field of candidates, many of them well-known city leaders, to win Tuesday's Democratic mayoral primary. 

With all precincts reporting, Krewson had 32.04 percent of the vote to city Treasurer Tishaura Jones' 30.38 percent — just 888 votes.

On the Republican side, utility executive Andrew Jones handily beat out his two competitors — one of whom, Crown Candy Kitchen owner Andy Karandzieff, had said he entered on a whim and didn't really want to be mayor. Both Jones and Krewson move on to the April 4 general election, where they'll face at least five candidates from other parties.

Jimmie Matthews, January 2017
File photo | Carolina Hidalgo I St. Louis Public Radio

On this edition of the Politically Speaking podcast, St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Rachel Lippmann welcome former St. Louis Alderman Jimmie Matthews to the program.

Matthews is one of seven Democratic candidates running to become St. Louis’ mayor.  We’re seeking to interview as many candidates as possible before the March 7 primaries.

Susannah Lohr | St. Louis Public Radio

It’s been a violent couple of years in the city of St. Louis, one measure being the 188 homicides in 2015 and 2016.

A decrease in property crime drove the overall crime number down between 2015 and 2016, but violent crime was up more than four percent in 2016 compared to 2015.

All of the Democratic candidates for mayor know addressing crime will be a top priority if they’re elected. Most of them have very similar plans. Not all of them have faith in current Police Chief Sam Dotson to implement those plans.

Mayor Francis Slay signs legislation that will ask voters to approve a sales tax increase to fund a Major League Soccer stadium and a north-south MetroLink line. (Feb. 3, 2017)
File photo | Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

If there’s one issue that’s provoked more fiery passions among St. Louis politicians, it’s using their constituents’ dollars to fund sports stadiums.

From the unsuccessful venture to keep Rams football in St. Louis to a pending proposal to nab a Major League Soccer team, there’s little question that opponents and proponents of the funding method have strong opinions — including the Democratic candidates seeking to become St. Louis’ next mayor.

A boutique apartment tower going up at Euclid and West Pine avenues received tax increment financing in 2015. It sits across from a Whole Foods, which is housed on the lower level of another apartment building that received TIF. (Feb. 21, 2017)
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

There’s been a statistic tossed around frequently in the Democratic race for St. Louis mayor: The city has given away more than $700 million worth of tax increment financing and tax abatements over 15 years.

And those tools have become a big issue in the races for aldermen, and the mayoral primary.

St. Charles County executive Steve Ehlmann, Mayor Francis Slay, and St. Clair County executive Mark Kern (right) at the State of the Region breakfast on January 12, 2017
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

In what turned out to be his final inauguration speech in 2013, St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay described St. Louis County as a place that “we confidently expect to re-enter in this decade.”

The Democrat might have been a bit overconfident, as it’s 2017 and there’s still strong opposition to the idea of a merger throughout St. Louis County. No one really knows what an actual merger would look like, either: Would St. Louis become a county municipality? Or would St. Louis and St. Louis County coalesce into one big city like Indianapolis did in the 1970s?

Still, the lack of headway hasn’t kept the topic from being a prime talking point in the St. Louis mayoral race. Proponents of a merger believe that combining jurisdictions creates some cost savings — and makes it easier to bring in big-ticket development projects.

city hall with flowers
File photo | St. Louis Public Radio

Though it's been underway for months, the race to replace Francis Slay as the mayor of St. Louis has officially begun.

Three of the top candidates for mayor were at the doors of the city's Board of Election Commissioners at 8 a.m., Monday — the start of filing for the March Democratic primary.

Left to right. Top, Vernon Betts, Joe Vaccaro, Charley "Big Will" Williams, Bottom: Johnnie M. Chester, Jimmie Matthews
Liz Schlemmer and provided photos

Several candidates are vying to replace long-time St. Louis Sheriff Jim Murphy, who is retiring after holding the office since 1989.

The St. Louis sheriff's office is responsible for the security of the 31 courtrooms of the Twenty-Second Judicial Circuit Court. The office also serves court papers and eviction notices.

(Sean Sandefur/St. Louis Public Radio)

St. Louis voters go to the polls today to decide whether incumbent Mayor Francis Slay deserves a fourth term.

Today's municipal primary was expected to decide who will be mayor. No Republicans were running, and the Democratic nominee will be heavily favored over Green Party candidate James Eldon McNeely.

Candidate Profiles

(Sean Sandefur/St. Louis Public Radio)

On Tuesday, St. Louis voters will go to the polls to select their nominee for mayor. But in the Democratic mayoral primary, former Alderman Jimmie Matthews sometimes seems the odd man out. Unlike his two opponents -- incumbent Mayor Francis Slay and Board of Alderman President Lewis Reed -- he hasn't solicited any campaign donations, and he hasn't spent much money on the race either. That's led some to speculate that he isn't a serious candidate, that he's only in the race to take votes from Reed.

But from Matthews' perspective, there's no difference between Slay and Reed.

(Sean Sandefur/St. Louis Public Radio)

At Monday's forum, the three Democratic candidates made their case for why they should be St. Louis' next mayor. Incumbent mayor Francis Slay is seeking an unprecedented fourth four-year term, while the other two candidates argued it was time for someone else to take the reins.

(Sean Sandefur/St. Louis Public Radio)

Updated 12:45 p.m. following forum - more to come.

Today, "St. Louis on the Air" hosted its St. Louis Mayoral Primary Forum.

(For a full report of the event, see our Chris McDaniel's story here)

Today: St. Louis Mayoral Primary Forum

Feb 11, 2013
(via Flickr/Richie Diesterheft)

The three candidates for the Democratic nomination for St. Louis mayor will take part in a one-hour town hall forum today. 

St. Louis Public Radio will air the forum, which is the second gathering of the candidates ahead of the March 5th primary election.

In liberal territory like St. Louis, the winner of the Democratic primary in March immediately becomes the presumptive favorite to win the general election on April 2nd.

(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

Today on "St. Louis on the Air," we announced that we'll be hosting the St. Louis Mayoral Primary Forum.  Here are some of the details:

(via City of St. Louis websites)

Last week, St. Louis Public Radio took a look at how much money the mayoral candidates have amassed, and where that money is coming from. Today we're looking at how that money is being spent.

(via City of St. Louis websites)

St. Louis's Democratic battle between incumbent Mayor Francis Slay and Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed is now official -- both candidates filed for the March primary this morning.

Slay has never lost a race, and he's taking this challenge seriously. In fact, Slay says he's had paid employees and volunteers standing in line to hold his spot for filing since Sept. 24.

Slay says he wants another term in order to continue improving education and public safety in the city, and points to the recent passage of local control of the police department.