Primary Coverage 2018 | St. Louis Public Radio

Primary Coverage 2018

Floyd Blackwell, Lee Smith and Raychel Proudie face each other in an Aug. 7 Democratic primary for Missouri House District 73.
David Kovaluk | St. Louis Public Radio

Three Democrats in north St. Louis County are seeking to take embattled state representative Courtney Curtis’ seat in Missouri’s 73rd district.

Curtis has served in the Missouri House since 2012 and was eligible to run for a final term. However, he chose not to file for the state representative race because he intended to run for state Senate.

Those plans changed when Curtis was fined $114,000 for violating state-campaign finance laws. The Missouri Democratic Party blocked his attempt to file because he hadn’t paid the fines.

Florissant resident Cori Bush is an ordained pastor and registered nurse – and is currently running to become a congresswoman.
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

On Wednesday’s St. Louis on the Air, Cori Bush joined host Don Marsh to discuss her campaign for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. St. Louis Public Radio political reporter Jason Rosenbaum also participated in the conversation.

Bush, who lives in Florissant, is challenging incumbent Rep. Lacy Clay (D-University City) in Missouri’s 1st Congressional District. Both Bush and Clay’s names will appear on next week’s Democratic primary ballot.

Bush fielded a wide variety of questions from Marsh, Rosenbaum and listeners during the show. Here are 10 of those exchanges.

Ferguson City Councilman Wesley Bell, left, is challenging seven-term incumbent Bob McCulloch, right, in the Democratic primary for St. Louis County prosecutor.
Jason Rosenbaum and Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Bob McCulloch won a seventh term as St. Louis County prosecutor on Aug. 5, 2014. Four days later, 18-year-old Michael Brown was fatally shot in Ferguson.

Brown’s death at the hands of a white police officer brought the racial disparities in the region’s criminal-justice system to the forefront and made national figures of both McCulloch and his opponent in the Democratic primary, Wesley Bell.

Floyd Blackwell, Lee Smith and Raychel Proudie face each other in an Aug. 7 Democratic primary for Missouri House District 73.
David Kovaluk | St. Louis Public Radio

Taxes on income, fuel and property are driving the Republican contest for the Missouri House seat that covers portions of St. Louis and Franklin counties.

Dottie Bailey and Matt Doell, both of Eureka, are hoping to succeed Kirk Mathews, R-Pacific, who chose not to run for re-election in District 110.

Attorney General Josh Hawley
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley joins Politically Speaking to talk about the nationally watched contest for the state’s United States Senate seat.

Hawley is the most well-known and well-funded Republican seeking to take on U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill in the fall. He’s facing off against 10 GOP candidates in next month’s Aug. 7 primary, including two, Austin Petersen and Tony Monetti, that have been guests on Politically Speaking.

David Kovaluk | St. Louis Public Radio

Two Democrats running for the south St. Louis House seat being vacated by Fred Wessels say the most important issues to address are improving public safety and educational opportunities.

Steve Butz and Travis Estes have similar platforms in the Aug. 7 race for the 81st District, which includes the Holly Hills, Mount Pleasant, Marine Villa, Dutchtown and Carondelet neighborhoods.

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill answers a question from Missouri state Rep. Michael Butler. Jan. 27, 2018
File photo I Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill says she wants the federal government to do more to discourage the type of Russian hacking that was directed at her office computers.

The Democrat told reporters Friday in St. Louis that military-intelligence officials said months ago that they have the tools to block Russian hacking but are waiting for an order from the White House.

Joining Friday’s show via phone, state Sen. Bob Onder (R-Lake Saint Louis), at left, spoke in favor of Proposition A. Jack Cardetti, who was in studio for the conversation, spoke in opposition.
Courtesy of Bob Onder & St. Louis Public Radio

“Do the people of the state of Missouri want to adopt Senate Bill 19 ("Right-to-Work") … ?”

So begins Proposition A, which if passed would make Missouri the 28th right-to-work state in the country, prohibiting labor organizations from mandating union membership or union fees as a condition of employment.

Voters will decide the hotly contested matter during the Aug. 7 primary election. On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh examined both sides of the ballot issue.

David Kovaluk | St. Louis Public Radio

Two St. Louis County attorneys hoping to succeed Democrat Stacey Newman in the Missouri House want to improve K-12 education and curb gun violence.

Ian Mackey and Sam Gladney are seeking the Democratic nomination for the district that includes Clayton and parts of Brentwood, Ladue, Richmond Heights and University City.

St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger confers with Councilman Pat Dolan at a Dec. 19, 2017, meeting of the St. Louis County Council.
File Photo | Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

This week’s Politically Speaking takes a look at three competitive elections in St. Louis County. It comes as relations between St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger and the St. Louis County Council have deteriorated.

Stenger is facing an expensive bid for re-election against businessman Mark Mantovani. St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch is engaged in an increasingly high-profile race against Ferguson City Councilman Wesley Bell. And two Democrats are challenging Councilman Pat Dolan’s bid for re-election.

David Kovaluk | St. Louis Public Radio

The St. Louis area’s 2nd Congressional District, which spans from Jefferson County to St. Charles, has been in Republican hands for more than 20 years.

But a crowd of progressive Democrats are banking that a majority of the district’s voters are ready to choose an alternative to Republican incumbent Ann Wagner, who’s held the congressional seat since 2013.

Lacy Clay, left, and Cori Bush, right, face each other in an Aug. 7 Democratic primary for Missouri's 1st Congressional District.
File photos | Carolina Hidalgo and Kelly Moffitt I St. Louis Public Radio

Congressman Lacy Clay may be the Missouri equivalent of professional-wrestling great Mr. Perfect.

That’s because the St. Louis Democrat has never lost an election for the Missouri Legislature or Congress. In fact, his father, former Congressman Bill Clay, won every aldermanic and congressional race during his long tenure in public service. Many attribute this electoral success to a stout political organization — and decades of loyalty.

St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch. Photo taken July 24, 2018 for his Politically Speaking appearance
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch joined the Politically Speaking team to talk about his bid for re-election to an eighth term.

McCulloch is one of the longest-serving elected officials in Missouri. He’s squaring off against Ferguson City Councilman Wesley Bell in the Aug. 7 primary. Because no Republican filed for the position, the winner of the August contest is all but guaranteed a four-year term.

St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger is going into the 2018 election cycle with few strong allies on the county council.
File Photo | Carolina Hidalgo I St. Louis Public Radio

The race to represent the 5th District on the St. Louis County Council comes amid a backdrop of extreme discord between Council members and the county executive.

County Executive Steve Stenger came into office in January 2015, with most of the Council on his side. As time went on, six out of the seven members -- many of them fellow Democrats -- ended up against him. The upshot is that Councilman Pat Dolan has become Stenger’s lone ally.

Dolan, D-Richmond Heights, is hoping to retain that designation after the Aug. 7 primary election. He’s facing a strong challenge from Lisa Clancy, a Maplewood Democrat who wants to supply a “fresh voice” on the Council.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Cori Bush prepare to take a photo on Saturday, July 21, 2018, at Sqwires Restaurant in St. Louis.
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

A Democrat challenging incumbent Congressman Lacy Clay is getting a boost from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who made national headlines earlier this year by toppling a long-time New York representative.

Ocasio-Cortez was in St. Louis on Saturday on behalf of Florissant Democrat Cori Bush. Her visit comes a day after Ocasio-Cortez joined Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders in campaigning for Brent Welder, a former St. Louis resident is who running for a congressional seat in Kansas.

Democrats Brad Bakker, at left, and Wiley Price IV, right, seek to replace Missouri House Rep. Karla May in District 84.
Jon Saucier Photography, Wiley Price IV via Facebook

In Missouri’s 84th House district two Democrats are competing for Karla May’s term-limited seat as she makes a bid for the state Senate.

Brad Bakker, an attorney, came to St. Louis to attend Saint Louis University; he left to get his law degree before returning to St. Louis with his family several years ago. Wiley Price IV, an events management director, is a lifelong resident of the 84th district, which includes the Forest Park, the Central West End, Dogtown, Wellls-Goodfellow and Hamilton Heights neigborhoods.

Attorney General Josh Hawley shakes hands on Thursday with Vice President Mike Pence. Pence made a speech in downtown St. Louis to bolster President Donald Trump's policies.
Bill Greenblatt I UPI

This week’s election edition of Politically Speaking examines how national and state-based political figures are assisting Attorney General Josh Hawley and U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill’s campaigns.

Hawley received a fundraising boost this week from Vice President Mike Pence, who swung through the St. Louis area on Thursday to promote President Donald Trump’s policies. Meanwhile across the state, House Democrats are trying to a link a 2017 controversy involving Senate President Ron Richard with Hawley.

Ferguson Councilman Wesley Bell
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

Ferguson City Councilman Wesley Bell comes back to the Politically Speaking podcast to talk about the race for St. Louis County prosecutor.

The Democratic official is taking on incumbent St. Louis Prosecutor Bob McCulloch, one of the longest serving local officials in the entire state. Because no Republican signed up to run, the winner of the Aug. 7 primary will serve a four-year term.

14th District state Senate candidates Sharon Pace, Brian Williams and Joe Adams speak at a candidate forum at Beyond Housing. July 17, 2018
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

In many respects, Missouri’s 14th Senate District is one of the most challenging legislative seats to represent.

With some of the state’s richest and poorest cities, the central and north St. Louis County-based district has been ground zero for high profile education and environmental issues. It also includes Ferguson, which became a national focal point for relations between police and African-Americans.

St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger is heading into the final weeks of his primary campaign with a hefty financial edge over Democratic rival Mark Mantovani as the two continue their expensive battle on TV.

And now, U.S. Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Ballwin, is joining them by also going on TV, even though she is expected to easily win the Republican primary.

Wagner’s decision to run ads before the Aug. 7 primary is notable – especially since she didn’t run any TV spots in 2016, according to her campaign staff.

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