William Lacy Clay

Bill Greenblatt | UPI

It is the black-tie event for prominent African Americans, and this year the parents of Michael Brown Jr., the unarmed black teenager killed by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, are scheduled to attend the closing gala of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s annual conference in Washington, D.C. 

After facing intense heat from some of his party’s African-American leaders, Gov. Jay Nixon is tapping a former St. Louis-area senator to serve as a liaison to the state’s poor and minority communities. 

Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus used an hour of so-called special orders on the House floor Monday night to draw attention to troubles confronting minorities across the U.S. with special attention paid to the recent unrest in Ferguson., Missouri. 

U.S. Rep. Lacy Clay, D-St. Louis, opened his comments by saying the pain felt in Ferguson following the shooting death of Michael Brown “has stirred the conscience of the nation and has forced us to confront some very difficult truths.” 

Bill Greenblatt | UPI

Although the Missouri Highway Patrol is overseeing the police presence in Ferguson, it quickly has become apparent that neither the patrol nor Gov. Jay Nixon is in control of all law-enforcement actions.

That lack of control already is leading to unwanted surprises that revolve around a central question:  Who is in charge?

That question also applies to St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley and County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch, who are battling over who should control a local probe into the police shooting of teenager Michael Brown. 

Bill Greenblatt, UPI

St. Louis Board of Alderman President Lewis Reed has an idea about what’s driving the frustration about Michael Brown’s death. 

As federal and local investigations into Brown’s shooting death unfold, Reed said more and more people want details and quick action. They want to know what really happened when a Ferguson police officer shot the 18-year-old last Saturday.

“We need to get some information out, some good solid information out,” said Reed on St. Louis on the Air on Monday. “The people need to know what direction we’re taking. Not we, but the department is taking.”

Every week, St. Louis Public Radio's Chris McDaniel, Jo Mannies and Jason Rosenbaum talk about the week’s politics.  This week, we dive into last night's election results.

The Politically Speaking crew broke down the results from Tuesday's primary elections. Among other things, the trio examined:

State Rep. Joshua Peters, D-St. Louis, campaigns in the Penrose neighborhood of St. Louis. Peters is running for re-election in the 76th District, which encompasses a portion of north St. Louis City.
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

On a slightly overcast day in St. Louis’ Penrose neighborhood, state Rep. Joshua Peters briskly moved from brick bungalow to brick bungalow to get the word out about his re-election campaign.   

Sporting a sky blue polo and dark-rimmed eyeglasses, the 26-year-old exuded the experience of an old political pro when greeting potential voters. Sophia Hubbard told Peters a member of his campaign staff had already come to her door. Oliver Williams told him something similar – and signaled that Peters had his vote on Aug. 5.

File photo

U.S. Rep. William Lacy Clay, D-St. Louis, may be at odds with House Budget chairman Paul Ryan when it comes to many issues – notably, federal spending.

But Clay offered up a written invitation to Ryan, R-Wisc., on Wednesday that’s based on one thing the two do have in common. They’re both Catholic.

Clay cited their faith’s strong focus on helping the poor in a personal invitation – hand-delivered to Ryan – that encourages the 2012 GOP vice presidential nominee to come to St. Louis.

Clay also made clear his motive for the invite.

Rep. Lacy Clay
St. Louis Public Radio

Amidst the dual crises of the partial government shutdown and the swiftly approaching debt limit, Congressman Lacy Clay (D - St. Louis) is addressing the inaction and hearing from constituents.

Before traveling back to D.C. for an evening meeting of the House, Clay stopped by St. Louis Public Radio to discuss the latest on Capitol Hill with St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh.

Here's what he had to say on the partial government shutdown, the debt ceiling and more.

On the inaction of Congress:

(Maria Altman/St. Louis Public Radio)

Big political weight was behind two NorthSide Regeneration bills that went before a St. Louis aldermanic committee Tuesday morning, but no vote was taken after four aldermen failed to attend.

(Adam Allington/St. Louis Public Radio)

Members of Missouri and Illinois' Congressional delegations are weighing in on the U.S. House version of the Farm Bill, which could be voted on before week's end.

Illinois Republican Rodney Davis told reporters today via conference call that the bill is a big improvement over the version passed by the Democrat-controlled U.S. Senate.

(Photo by Bill Raack/St. Louis Public Radio)

Congressman Lacy Clay of St. Louis says the federal government may soon be able to help local police as they try to combat crime in some parts of the city.

The St. Louis Police Department has recently reassigned some officers to so-called “hot spots” where violent crime continues to be a problem. Clay says there should be announcements in the next few months about combined federal-and-local crime-fighting efforts.

Adam Allington / St. Louis Public Radio

Seeking to reassure the public that St. Louis City is taking action to curb a recent spate of gun-related crime, City Hall announced on Monday several measures designed to target problem neighborhoods.

Police Chief Dan Isom has isolated 12 focus neighborhoods, 8 of which are located in North St. Louis, 2 in central city and 2 in the south.

Starting last weekend Isom says he is also shifting work schedules to move officers from day to evening patrol.

(via Flickr/Indofunk Satish)

Clay beats Carnahan

In a battle of political dynasties, Congressman William Lacy Clay emerged victorious over fellow incumbent Russ Carnahan Tuesday.

Clay won the Democratic primary to represent the party in the new 1st Congressional District. In a campaign that was often bitter, Clay repeatedly accused Carnahan of going negative with a string of attack ads, but says the strategy didn't work.

(via Flickr/Indofunk Satish)

Missouri primaries are today

Eight U.S. House members are asking voters for a chance at two more years in Washington. Thanks to new congressional district boundaries, at least one of those incumbents won't prevail. St. Louis Democrats Russ Carnahan and William Lacy Clay Jr. lead a three-way race for their party's nomination in Missouri's 1st District.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

One of the biggest match-ups in next Tuesday’s primary will pit Congressman Russ Carnahan against fellow Democrat William ‘Lacy’ Clay to represent the party in the 1st Congressional District.

The two incumbents are have waged heated, and at times spiteful campaigns. The upshot is one less Democrat in Washington for Missouri, and city voters will choose between two well-established political dynasties.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

The two Democrats battling for the U.S. House seat in the city of St. Louis say they'll put their differences behind them for the good of the party following the primary election next week.

Congressmen Russ Carnahan and William Lacy Clay appeared together on Newsradio 1120 KMOX on Monday for their only debate of the primary season.

The debate covered very little new ground, with Carnahan continuing his claims that Clay actively worked against him to eliminate the 3rd District, the seat Carnahan currently holds.

Adam Allington / St. Louis Public Radio

In the remaining days before the August primary St. Louis City Democrats remain divided between two candidates from well-established political pedigrees.

Democrat Russ Carnahan is challenging William Lacy Clay to represent the 1st Congressional District, which now comprises the entire city of St. Louis.

Carnahan says Clay sold out Democrats by passively endorsing Republican redistricting maps which erased Carnahan’s 3rd District and preserved Clays.

via Clay campaign

Updated 4:35 p.m. with Carnahan response

Missouri Congressman Lacy Clay continues to hurl a number of criticisms at Congressman Russ Carnahan, as they vie for the Democratic nomination for the 1st Congressional District.

During a press conference Friday at the IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) Training Center in south St. Louis, the Democratic incumbent accused Carnahan of selling out workers by voting for the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Missouri congressmen Lacy Clay and Russ Carnahan have some differences of opinion when it comes to the potential political impact of their Democratic primary battle. 

Both are running for the Democratic nomination in the 1st congressional district, which Clay has represented since 2001. Carnahan decided to challenge Clay after Carnahan’s south St. Louis city and county district was split up following the 2010 census. Clay calls the situation “unfortunate".