This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Jan. 28, 2013 - With little fanfare, leaders of the Missouri Democratic Party re-elected on Saturday their slate of top officers – keeping on Jackson County Executive Mike Sanders as party chairman and St. Louis Comptroller Darlene Green as the vice chair.
The low-key Democratic elections contrasted with the internal upheaval within the Missouri Republican Party, which elected a new party chairman, Ed Martin, who now is revamping internal operations and personnel.
Sanders has garnered some of the credit for the strong statewide showing by Missouri Democrats, who retained or snagged five of the six statewide offices on the Nov. 6 ballot.
The victors included Gov. Jay Nixon, the titular head of the party, and U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo. Both are close to Sanders.
Democrats didn’t do as well on the legislative level, with Republicans gaining a few seats in the Missouri House. Democrats did cut the GOP edge slightly in the state Senate.
In a statement, Sanders was praised for “a proven record of leadership and winning tough elections.”
“Mike Sanders is a proven leader, both in public office and on the campaign trail,” Nixon said. “I’m pleased that he will continue to serve as the chairman of the Missouri Democratic Party and build on his impressive record of delivering victories at the ballot box. Mike brings a unique level of energy and passion to this job, and he’s unquestionably a rising star in our party.”
Said Sanders in the same release: “I’m humbled and honored to be re-elected as chairman of the Missouri Democratic Party. We won five out of six statewide races because of leaders like Gov. Nixon and Sen. McCaskill. I look forward to working with them, and other leaders across Missouri, to continue building a stronger Democratic Party.”