Voters across the state in six legislative districts will head to the polls on Tuesday to cast ballots in races for the Missouri House.
Republicans currently control the House 113-43, with seven vacancies.
Governor Mike Parson called Tuesday’s special election to fill six seats, due to the resignations this year of State Reps. Scott Fitzpatrick, R-Shell Knob, Jean Evans, R-Manchester, Brandon Ellington, D-Kansas City, DaRon McGee, D-Kansas City, Cora Faith Walker, D-Ferguson and Bruce Franks Jr., D-St. Louis.
Of the six seats on Tuesday’s ballot, one is uncontested: Democrat Rasheen Aldridge will be the next State Representative to replace Representative Franks. The district is entirely in St. Louis City. Franks resigned this summer, after an emotional House floor speech in May about his struggle with anxiety and depression. Franks received a bipartisan standing ovation, after that speech.
Three of the other districts are Democratic strongholds, one is a GOP stronghold and another is getting attention from both parties.
Lawmakers in both parties have been canvassing in the 99th district in St. Louis County, a seat formerly held by Representative Evans. Republican Lee Ann Pitman of Ballwin is facing Democrat Trish Gunby of Manchester. This will be the most closely-watched race on Tuesday. Evans won re-election to the House last November but resigned in January to become the Missouri Republican Party’s executive director.
In southwest Missouri’s Barry County and small parts of Stone and Lawrence counties, voters will choose between Republican Scott Cupps of Shell Knob and Cassville Democrat Lisa Kalp, to replace now-Treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick won re-election to a fourth House term last November. However, Governor Parson appointed Fitzpatrick as State Treasurer in December, and Fitzpatrick was sworn-in in January, after Eric Schmitt was appointed as Attorney General.
In Kansas City, voters Tuesday will decide between Democrat Yolanda Young, Republican Tammy Louise Herrera and Green Party nominee Jeff Francis in the race for Ellington’s former House seat. Ellington, the House Minority Whip, resigned from the House this summer, after being elected to the Kansas City Council. This district also includes parts of Jackson County.
In Kansas City’s 36th House district, voters will decide between Democrat Mark Sharp and Green Party candidate Roberta Voorhees for a seat formerly held by Representative McGee. He resigned in April, after allegations of sexual harassment against a former staffer.
In St. Louis County’s 74th District, voters will choose between Democrat Mike Person and Libertarian Nicholas (Nick) Kasoff for a seat formerly held by Representative Walker, who resigned this summer to become St. Louis County’s policy director.
The winners of the races are expected to be sworn-in in January, when the 2020 legislative session begins in Jefferson City.
The seventh House vacancy will be filled at a special election, at a later date. State Rep. Rebecca Roeber, R-Lee’s Summit, died in July. She suffered serious injuries in a March head-on collision on Highway 50 in west-central Missouri’s Syracuse.
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