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Majority Leader Patterson says Missouri House agenda includes overhauling ballot items

Brian Munoz
St. Louis Public Radio
Republican Majority Floor Leader Rep. Jon Patterson, R-Lees Summit, on Jan. 4, the first day of the legislative session at the Missouri State Capitol in Jefferson City.

Missouri House Majority Leader Jon Patterson is the latest guest on Politically Speaking, where he talked about the start of the 2023 legislative session and his goals.

Patterson is a Republican from Lee’s Summit who was recently elected majority floor leader. He first won election to the 30th District House seat in 2018 and was subsequently reelected in 2020 and 2022. His district includes a portion of Jackson County.

Here’s what Patterson talked about on the program:

  • Whether acrimony among legislative Republicans would subside in 2023, allowing the party to pass legislation that failed to make it past the finish line over the past two years.
  • The possibility of additional tax cuts and Democratic criticism of the idea. Patterson also discussed whether some of the state’s surplus could be used for one-time grants for local initiatives on crime or education.
  • The prospect of raising teacher salaries and the uproar over school districts adopting four-day school weeks.
  • Efforts to yank away local control from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department. Before a ballot initiative passed in the 2010s, a state-appointed board was in charge of overseeing the department.

Patterson is a surgeon who is originally from Jackson County. He received his bachelor’s and medical degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

While Patterson’s district has historically been fairly Republican-leaning, it’s gotten more competitive in recent years as Democrats have gained ground in suburban areas around the state. He won his first election by about 6 percentage points and prevailed in his subsequent contests by wider margins.

As House majority leader, Patterson has substantial power over what gets debated on the floor. It’s often a steppingstone to becoming House speaker.

Sarah Kellogg is the Missouri Statehouse reporter for St. Louis Public Radio
Jason is the politics correspondent for St. Louis Public Radio.

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