Mike Parson

The candidates for lieutenant governor are Republican Mike Parson, left, and Democrat Russ Carnahan.
File photos | St. Louis Public Radio

For the first time in 12 years, someone besides Peter Kinder will be lieutenant governor of Missouri.

Kinder jumped into the governor's race and lost in a crowded Republican primary, coming in third in a contest won by Eric Greitens. The major party candidates on the Nov. 8 ballot are Democrat Russ Carnahan and Republican Mike Parson.

Now that the 2016 primaries are in the books, most people are looking ahead to what could be an expensive and contentious general election cycle.

But before Tuesday becomes part of Missouri political history, perhaps it’s worth answering the 10 questions posed before voters went to the polls. After all, it wouldn’t be very useful to throw out errant questions without answering them.

Top row, Russ Carnahan, Tommie Pierson, Winston Apple. Bottom row, Bev Randles, Mike Parson
Jason Rosenbaum and campaign photo

Let’s get something out of the way: Missouri’s lieutenant governor doesn’t have a lot of power or many defined responsibilities.

The lieutenant governor is charged with presiding over the Senate, serving on boards and commissions, and assuming the governorship if the state’s chief executive dies. That reality has often under whelmed people elected to the office: The late U.S. Sen. Thomas Eagleton once quipped that the lieutenant governor’s office is only good for standing at an office window and watching the Missouri River flow by.

Mike Parson May 2016
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

On the latest edition of the Politically Speaking podcast, St. Louis Public Radio's Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies are pleased to welcome state Sen. Mike Parson to the program for the first time.

The Bolivar Republican is one of two major candidates from that party running for lieutenant governor. The other is Kansas City native Bev Randles, who was a guest on the podcast a few weeks ago. The two Democratic aspirants for the office — former U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan and state Rep. Tommie Pierson — have also appeared on the show.

Bev Randles
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

On the latest edition of the Politically Speaking podcast, St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies welcome lieutenant governor hopeful Bev Randles to the show.

The Kansas City Republican is one of four major candidates from both parties seeking the statewide office, which is being vacated by Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder. Randles is squaring off against state Sen. Mike Parson in the GOP primary, while former U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan and state Rep. Tommie Pierson are seeking the Democratic nomination.

snebtor | Flickr

Owners of the best agricultural lands in Missouri will not see their taxes going up in 2017 and 2018.

The Missouri House and Senate have both passed a measure blocking a 5 percent tax hike on lands graded "1 through 4." That amounts to one-third of the state's most productive farmlands. The increase was authorized in December by the State Tax Commission and would have automatically taken effect without legislative action to stop it.

Russ Carnahan
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio | File photo

Former U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan, a member of arguably Missouri’s most prominent Democratic family, has ended months of speculation by filing paperwork to run for lieutenant governor.

On Friday, Carnahan set up a campaign committee with the Missouri Ethics Committee.

Republican GOP - RIGHT WIDTH - also avail. gopelephantleft

(Updated 2 p.m. Mon., July 27)

Missouri’s Republican contest for governor has gotten less crowded — at least for now — as state Sen. Mike Parson has decided to run for the state’s No. 2 post instead. And on Monday, he released a list of supporters, including the state Senate's leadership.

Meanwhile, the GOP’s newest gubernatorial candidate — state Sen. Bob Dixon of Springfield — offered some details about his previously acknowledged past in the 1980s when he lived several years as a young gay man.

In an emailed statement to St. Louis Public Radio, Dixon blamed child abuse for what he called “teenage confusion.” He now is married, has three children and is a staunch social conservative who believes in traditional marriage.

Missouri Sen. Mike Parson, R-Bolivar
MoHorizonNews | Flickr

(Updated, 9:40 p.m. Thursday, April 30)

In a move long expected, Missouri Sen. Mike Parson, R-Bolivar, announced today that he’s running for Missouri governor in 2016.

And his top issue, he said in his kickoff address, "will be about protecting and fighting to expand the number one industry in our state - agriculture."

His entry also is expected to kick off a likely parade of rural GOP rivals.


It appears that Democrats in the Missouri Senate have successfully stopped legislation that would have redefined what constitutes a maintenance project and exempted those being done on public property from the state's prevailing wage requirement.

Mo. Senate

The leader of the Missouri Senate is denying reports from some conservative bloggers that top Republicans are planning an about-face on Medicaid expansion.

In particular, Red State published a report Monday that President Pro-tem Tom Dempsey (R, St. Charles) and Senator Mike Parson (R, Bolivar) were backing a so-called “shell bill” that would be used to add Medicaid expansion to next year’s state budget.  Dempsey denies that report.

s_falkow | Flickr

The Humane Society of the United States and two Missouri-based non-profit animal groups are waiting to hear if the State Supreme Court will take up their appeal on what they describe as a crippling regulation.

The plaintiffs say the animal adoption tax levied on non-profit shelters and rescue groups can cost them up to $2,500 a year, making it hard to feed and find homes for the animals in their care.  Amanda Good is the HSUS State Director for Missouri.

“For the smaller shelters, that’s actually a significant chunk of their budget, money that should be spent on helping the animals and caring for the animals," Good said.

The Missouri Senate Chamber
Marshall Griffin | St. Louis Public Radio | file photo

The Missouri Senate will be led by new people when it convenes for the 2013 session.

Majority party Republicans on Thursday nominated Sen. Tom Dempsey, of St. Charles, to serve as president pro tem - the top position in the chamber. Dempsey still must be elected by the full Senate when it convenes in January, but that is expected to be a mere formality.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Legislation that would have moved back Missouri’s filing period for the August 7th primaries has been withdrawn from consideration by the State Senate.

Instead of debating the bill itself, some St. Louis-area Senators began criticizing the citizens’ commission that drew up the latest State Senate district map Jim Lembke (R, Lemay) and Jane Cunningham (R, Chesterfield) both had harsh words for the proposed map, which would move Cunningham’s 7th District to the Kansas City area.

(via Flickr/hlkljgk)

The Missouri Senate has unanimously passed legislation to move the filing period for the state’s party primaries back by one month.

The bill is moving rapidly because the filing period is currently set to begin February 28th and end March 27th, and because of the lack of new State House and Senate district maps.  The Missouri Supreme Court tossed out the Senate map, which now has to be redrawn, and a legal challenge to the new House map is also being appealed to the High Court.  Senate President Pro-tem Rob Mayer (R, Dexter) says those facts alone make it necessary to push back the filing period.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

The Missouri Senate has given first-round approval to legislation that would push back the filing period for the state’s August primaries by one month.

The bill’s backers say the filing period needs to be moved forward to March 27th through April 24th, due to legal uncertainty over the State House and Senate district maps.  Currently, the filing period begins February 28th and ends March 27th for all state and federal races this year.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Legislation is awaiting action in the Missouri Senate that would change the filing period for candidates planning to run in the state’s Democratic and Republican primaries in August.

(via Flickr/jennlynndesign)

Missouri is one of 24 states where citizens who gather enough signatures can put a question on the ballot.

They’re called voter initiatives.

While voters have the ability to enact laws in Missouri, those laws can be changed or even overturned by legislators.

This year, two voter-approved laws, one on puppy mills, the other on the minimum wage, have been targeted at the state capitol.

St. Louis Public Radio’s Maria Altman reports.

Marshall Griffin, St. Louis Public Radio

The Missouri Senate has passed controversial legislation that would reverse portions of Proposition B

Voters narrowly approved the ballot measure last November, which limits dog breeders to 50 dogs per operation and requires adequate food, water and outdoor access.

The Missouri Senate has given first-round approval to a bill that would reverse portions of Proposition B, a ballot measure narrowly approved by voters last year to regulate dog breeders.

The bill would do away with Proposition B’s limit of 50 dogs per breeder, and changes the name of the law from “Puppy Mill Cruelty Prevention Act” to “Canine Cruelty Prevention Act.”