Here’s what happened… See secretary of state’s election results here.
From the Big Stories…
Missouri Club for Growth 0-4
Rex Sinquefield’s $973,000…. Poof. All four of the targeted incumbents won. And most very handily despite being hugely out-spent. Three weren’t even close: Nate Walker won by 17 points; Jeff Messenger won by 3 points; Paul Fitzwater won by 57 points; and Lyle Rowland won by 24 points.
That’s a staggering sum to spend on four House races – and lose. In some sense it’s hard to fathom how you can spend that amount in such a small geographic space – rural places especially where media isn’t particularly expensive – and lose.
If history is any indication though, this will be shrugged off as part of a longer term strategy. Sinquefield’s other big loss tonight was his backing of St. Louis County incumbent Charlie Dooley (see below) to whom he’d contributed $200,000.
The transportation tax sank 59%-41% despite massive spending (estimated $4 million) by a coalition of construction companies and organized labor.
The statement from Sen. Mike Kehoe, who led the charge for the tax proposal in the Senate: Since this process began two years ago, my ultimate goal has been to give Missourians the opportunity to decide how they want to invest in transportation infrastructure. They have done so, and I respect that outcome. I fought for Amendment 7 because I believed it was a good and viable solution that would make Missouri’s roads and bridges safer while putting tens of thousands of Missourians back to work, not because it was a wise political move… As the chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, it is my sincere desire that in the coming days Governor Nixon will begin to lead on this issue and will endeavor to find a solution to a problem that is not going away.
Between the failed early voting effort and this transportation tax, a lot of organized labor money was spent in the cycle that won’t be available to Democrats in the fall…
Right to Farm
The Right to Farm Amendment barely squeaked by passing with 50.1% of the vote. Behind the sudden tightness of the race were the television ads. The US Humane Society came in with late ads, but then the pro-farm coalition’s response seemed to amplify their impact. They ran counter anti-USHS ads everywhere. That’s all fine and good in rural Missouri where USHS is considered fringe. However they also ran the same ads in the urban areas where the Humane Society is viewed very favorably. Attacking USHS in St. Louis and Kansas City probably gave voters a reason to ignore the innocuous ballot language and be skeptical enough to vote No.
Bob Onder won handily, taking the three-way race with 64% of the vote. Bad news for Medicaid expansion…
St. Louis County Executive Race
Steve Stenger stomped incumbent Charlie Dooley 66%-30%. A few observers remarked to me that Dooley appears effectively Harmonized, a reference to former St. Louis City Mayor Clarence Harmon. Harmon was an African American who ascended to his post with white support only to be undone when that support vanished.
Republicans may put on a brave face this morning, but this was not their preferred outcome.
The upset of the night occurred in House 27 where incumbent Democratic Rep. Bonnaye Mims lost to political newcomer India Williams. Some observers say that Mims got crossways with the Freedom organization, which lead to her ouster.
Clay Bests Carter
In House 76 incumbent Rep. Josh Peters with a might hand from Congressman Lacy Clay held off Chris Carter Sr. with a comfortable 9 point win (54-45%).
MCN Misses Targets
Sen. Maria Chappelle Nadal missed both her targets last night with Peters winning re-election (above), and Joe Adams winning the four-way primary to replace the late Rory Ellinger. Bottom line: Adams had decades of name ID against three opponents, two of whom didn’t even take the time to start campaign committees.
Meet the New Ashcroft, Same as the Old Ashcroft?
Jay Ashcroft won, as expected, though his margin of victory wasn’t overwhelming considering his pedigree. He beat Jack Spooner by 54%-36%. Ashcroft won by embracing his last name, we’ll see how that works in a few months…
House 18 – Not even close! Lauren Arthur ran away with this Democratic primary, winning 73% to 26%. Count it up as a big win for the Skaggs faction.
House 98 – Shamed Dogan defeated the incumbent’s wife, and will join the House Republican Caucus as its only African American member in January.
House 157 – Incumbent Rep. Mike Moon overcame the challenge from a former rep’s wife by ten points, winning 55%-45%.
Remington Polls Shows Well
Axiom Strategies Jeff Roe’s polling company Remington Research Group can be proud of their predictions with Stenger demolishing Dooley and the Right to Farm Amendment limping across the finish line.
Primaries With No Generals
These folks won primaries last night and have no general election opposition…
Senate 2 – Republican Bob Onder.
Senate 16 – Republican Dan Brown.
House 3 – Republican Nate Walker.
House 7 – Republican Mike Lair.
House 22 – Democrat Brandon Ellington.
House 27 – Democrat India Williams.
House 28 – Democrats Tom McDonald.
House 62 – Republican Tom Hurst.
House 74 – Democrat Sharon Pace.
House 76 – Democrat Joshua Peters.
House 77 – Democrat Kimberly Gardner.
House 86 – Democrat Joe Adams.
House 98 – Republican Shamed Dogan.
House 103 – Republican John Wiemann.
House 125 – Republican Warren Love.
House 130 – Republican Jeff Messenger
House 139 – Republican Jered Taylor.
House 144 – Republican Paul Fitzwater.
House 148 – Republican Holly Rehder.
House 155 – Republican Lyle Rowland.
House 156 – Republican Jeff Justus.
Sen. Brian Nieves lost his Republican primary to become Recorder of Deeds in Franklin County.
His classy Facebook post upon losing last night: I big congratulations to Franklin County's next Recorder of Deeds, Jennifer Metcalf! She worked hard, is a class act, and will do well as Recorder. I have nothing but good things to say about ALL the people who offered their service to our county as potential Recorders and it was nice to finally experience an election that was clean and civil! Thank you to all Recorder Candidates, I know it's never easy to stand and ask to be elected but you all did it well. Jennifer still has to win in November as I'm confident she will so let's get behind her and make sure she wins!! If you are a Citizens for Nieves supporter or even just a friend, I would love to see you give Jennifer a congratulatory message and support her in November!
For those who like to grade their blogger, I “mis-predicted” three House Republican primaries (House 1, 111, and 120), and three House Democratic primaries (House 27, 76, and 149). 42 out of 48 legislative races correct… an average showing.
From the Gate Way Group website:
John E Bardgett Jr, Andrew B Blunt, and Jay Reichard added Lathrop & Gage LLP.
Rodney R Hubbard added Missouri Deer Association.
John E Bardgett Jr added Missouri AFL-CIO, Ascension Health; and deleted DDC Advocacy, and Missouri Auto Dealers Association.
John E Bardgett Jr, John Parris and Kim Tuttle deleted Missouri Association of Public Administrators.
John E Bardgett Jr, Jacqueline M Bardgett, Carol Kemna, Erika Leonard, and Kimberly Tuttle deleted Daiichi Sankyo Inc.
John E Bardgett Jr and Erika Leonard deleted Kansas City MO School District Board of District.
Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $10,000 from David Steward.
Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $15,000 from Dempsey for Missouri.
Missouri for Excellence In Government - $250,000 from Rex and Jeanne Sinquefield.
MO Republican Party - $10,000 from David Steward.
Happy birthdays to former Reps. Bob Nance (65), and Bryan Stevenson (45).