Missouri Elections 2018 | KCUR

Missouri Elections 2018

Missouri Senate, Samuel King

Updated at 12:05 p.m. to clarify fundraising totals — Missouri Democrats are hoping to cut into the Republicans’ supermajority in the General Assembly, and the 8th District is a main target.

It’s a rematch for the eastern Jackson County seat that stayed with Republicans in November 2017’s special election, when then-House Majority Leader Mike Cierpiot managed a narrow victory (50 percent) over Democrat Hillary Shields (42.6 percent) and independent Jacob Turk (7 percent).

A man in a black suit and blue tie waved to an unpictured crowd after having just given a speech.
Gage Skidmore / Flickr - CC

Segment 1: Instead of a divided country, Sen. Blunt sees "great capacity to come together."

In a live broadcast from NPR studios in Washington, Missouri's junior U.S. senator weighs in on upcoming midterm elections and the fate of the state's senior senator, who's engaged in one of the hottest midterm races in the country. He also discusses his efforts on the behalf of Missourians in pushing legislation to help ease the opioid epidemic, and on a bill that would make air travel more traveler-friendly.

Luetkemeyer and Rucker
Brian Ellison / KCUR 89.3

The race to replace Missouri Sen. Rob Schaaf has come down to two millennials who knew each other while attending Mizzou.

One is Republican Tony Luetkemeyer, a soft-spoken attorney who’s seeking his first elective office and has deep political connections — he’s close to party leaders and his wife, Lucinda Luetkemeyer, was general counsel in the office of former Gov. Eric Greitens.

The other is Democrat Martin T. Rucker II, a former Kansas City Chiefs and Mizzou football player who co-founded a Democratic-leaning political club in the Northland and ran unsuccessfully for a state House seat in 2016.

file photo / KCUR 89.3

Missouri residents packed the driver's license office near the intersection of Cleaver and Troost Wednesday afternoon to beat the state's voter registration deadline for the November election.

Kyle Duyck moved to Missouri from Oregon two years ago. As someone who has regularly voted in previous years, Duyck said he does not want to miss this year’s midterm elections.

“I think there needs to be checks and balances,” Duyck said. “Keeping a Senate seat so we actually can get more moderate elections and get more moderate bills passed would be very important for me.”

Segment 1: With age comes responsibility, and these 18 year-olds are exercising their right to vote.

We talk with college students who are looking forward to voting for the first time this November. But first, the president of Rock the Vote tells us what it takes to get young people to turn out to the polls.

bigstock.com

Updated at 10:23 a.m. Oct. 10 with state's response — A Cole County judge has rejected a sworn statement that Missouri voters who wanted to use non-photo forms of identification had to sign in order to vote.

But Richard Callahan’s ruling, issued Tuesday, says most of the identification requirement the Missouri Legislature created in 2016 “is within its constitutional prerogative under the Missouri Constitution."

Andrea Tudhope / KCUR 89.3

Terry Chester was 15 when he got his first job at the I-70 Drive-In, making $2.90 per hour. That was minimum wage at the time.

Decades later, after the recession, he found himself working for minimum wage again as a sacker at Sun Fresh. Chester, 53, has been there five years and now makes $9.85 an hour. He said he lives paycheck to paycheck.

Lisa Rodriguez / KCUR 89.3

As the rain fell steadily outside Tuesday morning, a maintenance worker was trying to dry out the carpet in the children’s corner of the Waldo branch of the Kansas City Public Library.

“Water seeping through here is a regular occurrence,” said deputy library director Joel Jones.

Creative Commons

Segment 1: Missourians have the choice this November to gradually raise the minimum wage from $7.85 to $12 an hour by 2023.

Can Kansas Citians live comfortably on Missouri's current minimum wage? What would happen to our economy if it were higher? Can small businesses afford to pay more without laying off workers? Today, we discussed the pros and cons for Propositon B, a statewide minimum wage ballot measure.

As Mary Elizabeth Coleman drives her kids to school, her SUV is a cacophony of chatter. At a stoplight she pulls up behind a car with a "Jesus loves feminists" bumper sticker.

Coleman says to nobody in particular, “Yesterday was the day that women earned the right to vote! 98 years ago … ” She trails off as her footnote to the bumper sticker is drowned out by the shrieking of her baby and a barrage of school drop-off questions from her other kids.

Luetkemeyer and Rucker
Andrea Tudhope / KCUR 89.3

The influence of money in today's politics is undeniable, in Missouri and everywhere else. We explore campaign contributions, PACs, "dark money" groups and more, not only in big races like the U.S. Senate race between Claire McCaskill and Josh Hawley, but also in tight local races like the fight for the Missouri Senate seat in Platte and Buchanan Counties. We talk with Republican Tony Luetkemeyer and Democrat Martin Rucker, and St. Louis Public Radio's Jo Mannies.

Lisa Rodriguez / KCUR 89.3

At more than 60 years old, Kansas City’s Buck O’Neil bridge is nearing the end of its useful life. And it’s one of thousands across Missouri that the state Department of Transportation can’t afford to replace.

In 2017, MoDOT gave the city two options: It could make major repairs, which would mean closing the bridge for two years. Or the city could make smaller repairs but keep it open to limited traffic.

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley is calling for a special counsel to investigate whether U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein and her staff improperly handled sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Hawley, Missouri’s GOP nominee for the U.S. Senate, is joining a number of Republicans who are upset over how the letter from Christine Blasey Ford was leaked to the press several weeks ago.

Aviva Okeson-Haberman / KBIA

Segment 1: Going "Beyond the Ballot" to find what drives Missouri voters to the ballots.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3 / Senator Claire McCaskill / Flickr - CC

Democratic U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill has a clear fundraising edge over her Republican opponent, state Attorney General Josh Hawley, in her re-election race — with about a month left before the Nov. 6 midterm.

McCaskill brought in $22,785,442, as of the July 18 report to the Federal Election Committee, or FEC. In contrast, Hawley had raised $5,320,513.

Jennifer Moore / KSMU

On a recent Thursday evening, as commuters whizzed by on a busy Springfield street, a handful of activists gathered inside the First Unitarian Universalist Church.

“You’ll login with an ID and password, which I’ll give you,” Susan Schmalzbauer instructed the volunteers, who are part of Missouri Faith Voices, a multi-faith organization that pushes for equality across economic and racial lines.

“They’re getting ready to call people across the state,” Schmalzbauer said.

Carolina Hidalgo / St. Louis Public Radio

Less than two miles from the iconic Anheuser-Busch brewery in St. Louis, a startup with 11 employees is brewing small batches of beers with names like Dead Druid King (made with oak leaves instead of hops), Cucumber Pepper Kolsch and Ozark Common.

Earthbound Beer occupies the site of a 19th-century brewery and fills several thousand aluminum cans each month in the limestone cellars 25 feet underground where brewmasters once kept their kegs cool with ice from the Mississippi River.

Samuel King / KCUR-89.3

In the blocks around the square in downtown Liberty, the seat of government in western Missouri’s Clay County, there’s a varied amount of businesses, restaurants and shops.

There’s just as varied an amount of political opinions ahead of the Nov. 6 midterm election. Dustin McAdams tends bar at Rock and Run Brewery and Pub, and while he’s sure he’ll vote in this year’s election, he has no loyalty to one party.

David Kovaluk / St. Louis Public Radio

After the August primaries, it’s clear many people — young, black and progressive — played a major role in helping former Ferguson Councilman Wesley Bell defeat incumbent St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch in the Democratic race.

“We’re saying bye to Bob and ushering in, hopefully, a new era in prosecutor politics,” Rodney Brown said weeks before the primaries. He’s a member of a local committee of young, black progressives called St. Louis Action Council.

Samuel King / KCUR 89.3

Updated Sept. 24 with appeal denied — A ballot measure that would change Missouri's ethics laws and redistricting process will go in front of voters in November, an appeals court panel ruled Friday. And the state Supreme Court confirmed as much Monday in denying an appeal.  

Aviva Okeson-Haberman

It’s been a long week for St. Dominic High School senior Emma Story. But as the sun sets on a Friday night, Story is out knocking on doors in St. Charles for the Missouri GOP.

Story is a first-time voter who spends most of her free time — when she’s not practicing on her high school’s golf team — trying to get Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley and other Republicans elected.

“I’m really excited to really have a direct voice or direct effect in democracy this year,” Story said.

She’s not the only high school senior looking forward to voting this November.

Then-state Sen. Mike Kehoe stands on the Missouri Senate chamber floor of the General Assembly.
Jason Rosenbaum / St. Louis Public Radio

Segment 1: Missourians will vote on the first gas-tax increase in 24 years. 

Aviva Okeson-Haberman / KCUR 89.3 file photo

Missouri U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill won’t vote for President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, the Democrat said in a news release Wednesday.

After weeks of deliberation, McCaskill said she opposes Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court because of so-called dark money — donations to nonprofits that keep the source secret.

Alex Smith / KCUR 89.3

It’s late summer, and the drone of insects is a sound that Lonnie Kessler has come to dread. A similar chirping means he’s minutes away from another seizure.

“It sounds like a thousand crickets all at once in my head. And so that really alerts me this is going to happen right now,” Kessler said. “And then I lose consciousness.”

Both of Missouri’s senators want their colleagues to investigate allegations of sexual assault against President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee.

It comes as Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the high court was expected to get a key vote later this week.

Two Missouri General Assembly candidates sit with headphones on behind microphones for a radio interview.
Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Parkville candidates for Missouri House look to replace term-limited state Rep. Nick Marshall.

Lauren Arthur's big Senate win in Clay County has many Missouri Democrats hoping the same could happen in the neighboring state House race for District 13. We sat down with the two major-party candidates to discuss their proposed policies on a gas tax increase, marijuana legalization, violent crime and more.

K. Trimble / Wikimedia Commons

Updated Sept. 14, 2018, with court ruling — The wide-ranging initiative petition that would change how Missouri draws its legislative districts and effectively ban lobbyist gifts won't be on the Nov. 6 ballot, a judge ruled Friday.

Once again, Republicans are raising questions about U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill’s personal finances – or rather, those of her husband, wealthy businessman Joe Shepard.

But this time, she’s accusing her GOP critics of being hypocrites because they’re not making the same demands of President Donald Trump.

Her Republican rival, Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, contends that McCaskill wants to hide her family’s “dark-money’’ finances.

Andrea Tudhope / KCUR 89.3

Students at the University of Missouri-Kansas City had an opportunity to ask U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill questions during a campaign stop Monday. 

A federal appeals court ruled Monday that Missouri can’t prevent any political action committee from donating to another political action committee.

The decision from the 8th District Court of Appeals could make it permanently more difficult to track the true source of donations to PACs — entities that have become much more powerful since the passage of campaign donation limits.

Pages