JEFFERSON CITY — A line of Missourians seeking political office passed through the secretary of state’s office Tuesday morning as candidates waited to get their names on the August primary ballot.
A mix of Oxfords and cowboy boots lay in narrow, crowded hallways. From 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, 336 candidates had submitted.
In a room full of current and potential politicians, an air of confidence was palpable. Yet, as redistricting debates rage on, many are still unaware of the boundaries of the district they seek to represent.
In the August 2 primary in Missouri, one U.S. Senate seat, all eight U.S. House seats, 163 state House seats, and 17 state Senate seats are up for election. Redistricting is still pending for the US State Senate and House districts.
The electoral process is under Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft’s purview, however, and he doesn’t care.
“It will work,” he said. “We’ll just follow the law.”
Although Tuesday is the first day of the filing period, candidates have until 5 p.m. on March 29 to get their names on the ballot in August.
On the first day of filing, candidates choose a random number, which can determine their place on the ballot. Candidates generally hope for a lower number, in the hope that being closer to the top of the ballot increases their chances of winning the job. Candidates who file after Tuesday are listed on the ballot at the time they filed.
Representative Bill Owen, R-Springfield, pulled the lucky number one out of the box on Tuesday. He walked out of the living room waving it above his head like a winning lottery ticket and catching the attention of the other candidates waiting in line.
Owen jokingly proceeded with the auction of the numbered card, calling for bids.
“I guess I don’t have to worry about where I’m going to be placed on the ballot,” said Owen, who is running for re-election.
Middle Missouri Candidates
With all of the State House seats up for grabs, the middle of Missouri will see new and old names on the ballot in August.
Republican John Martin, a Columbia business owner and former pastor, is running in the 47th District, which Rep. Chuck Basye, R-Rocheport, currently represents. Basye reaches his term limit after this year.
One of Martin’s main issues is the low tax rate, which he says allows people to reinvest in their local economy.
As of the close of business Tuesday, two Democrats — Adrian Plank and Chimene Schwach, both of Columbia — had also filed for the 47th District. According to the new map of the House, the district is considered a swing seat – 50% Democrat, 47% Republican and 3% for other parties.
Rep. David Tyson Smith, D-Columbia, is running for State House again, this time in the 46th district instead of the 45th due to redistricting. He also chose to run in the 46th to make room for other Democrats to run in the 45th.
“Hopefully if we play our cards right, we can get four Boone County Democrats here,” he said.
So far, Tyson Smith is the only candidate to have filed in the 46th District.
In the 44th District, Rep. Cheri Toalson Reisch, R-Hallsville, was the only candidate to file.
In the 45th District, Kathy Steinhoff, a Democratic and Columbia public school teacher, had the field to herself starting Tuesday.
In the newly drawn 50th District, candidates include Columbia attorney Douglas Mann and James Musgraves, who currently serve as volunteers for the UM Chancellor’s Standing Committee on Military and Veterans Affairs.
Congressional and State Offices
Near the start of the line as the case opened was Rep. Sara Walsh, R-Ashland. Walsh is running for U.S. Congress this year in the 4th District, currently represented by Vicky Hartzler, who is running for the U.S. Senate.
She touted her experience and work ethic in Jefferson City as a state representative as qualifications for Congress.
“I’m the first congressional candidate in line here today,” Walsh said. “I sat in the front row when I went to college… I was the first to raise my hand to volunteer, and the last, sometimes, out of the Capitol.”
Walsh will compete with six other Republicans in the race for the 4th District, including Sen. Rick Brattin, R-Harrisonville and a current member of the conservative state Senate caucus. No Democrats had filed Tuesday.
Other nominees include former Kansas City news anchor Mark Alford, Jim Campbell of Climax Springs, William Irwin of Harrisonville, Kalena Bruce of Stockton and Taylor Burks, who served as Boone County’s first Republican clerk.
If the redistricting places nominated candidates outside their constituencies and the nomination period has not expired, candidates may withdraw and re-nominate in their new constituency. Otherwise, the legislator is competent to make exceptions.
As Democrat Nicole Galloway’s term expires, Missourians will also vote on the state’s next auditor. Rep. David Gregory, R-Sunset Hills, former Rep. Alan Green, D-Florissant and state treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick all filed at 5 p.m. Tuesday.
Although several of the big names in Missouri politics showed up to file on Tuesday, most of those in line had less name recognition. Lewis Rolen, whose St. Louis Cardinals suit quickly showed off his hometown in a sea of suits, showed up to run in a crowded U.S. Senate field.
He said he will represent honesty and opposition to corporate interests.
“Both of my great-grandparents were slaves in Missouri,” he said. “We have blood in the ground here. People need to express themselves. »
Boone County Depots
Candidates also began filing for Boone County offices on Tuesday ahead of the Aug. 2 primary election.
At 5 p.m. Tuesday, here are the candidates who had announced their intention to run:
- Associate Circuit Judge, Division 5: Kimberly Shaw
- Associate Circuit Judge, Division 9: Tracy Z. Gonzalez
- Associate Circuit Judge, Division 11: Stephanie Morrell
- Presiding Commissioner: Connie W. Leipard, Kip Kendrick
- Circuit Court Clerk: Christy Blakemore
- Recorder of Deeds: Shannon Martin, Bob Nolte
- Prosecutor: Daniel K. Knight, Roger Johnson
- Revenue Receiver: Brian C. McCollum
Xcaret Nuñez and Joy Mazur contributed to this report