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<img src=http://www.kwmu.org/pic/speakersm.gif border=0> VOTE '06: Akin faces first primary challenge since taking office

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Akin, the incumbent, left, and challenger Sherman Parker.

By Matt Sepic, KWMU

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/kwmu/local-kwmu-523352.mp3

St. Louis – In Missouri's second Congressional District, Republican Todd Akin is facing his first primary challenge since winning the seat nearly six years ago.

Sherman Parker has served two terms in the Missouri House representing part of St. Charles County.

Like Akin, he is against abortion and same sex marriage. But Parker does support federal funding for embryonic stem cell research.

Parker said Todd Akin has focused too much on social issues--like keeping the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance.

"I hope that Republicans will be more traditionally focused--be strong on security issues, strong on border issues," Parker said. "And they want someone that will focus on economic development throughout this region and throughout this country."

But Akin said he has a strong track record both as a fiscal conservative and in bringing jobs to the district.

The Congressman said he helped convince the Navy to develop a radar-jamming version of the F/A 18 that will be built in St. Louis.

"The thing that's exciting about that is we're talking about a potential for about 80 aircraft, which would be two years of full production on the F-18 line," Akin said.

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