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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Missouri primary winners continue on to general election

Several amendments were also passed to the Missouri constitution.

Missouri primaries were held August 5 and included several important ballot measures, as well as elections.

Five ballot measures were listed on the primary ballot as amendments to the state constitution and there will be four ballot measures in the upcoming election on Nov. 4.

“There will be several issues on the general election ballot as well, so it was important that that ballot not be overloaded,” said Governor Jay Nixon’s Press Secretary Scott Holste. “This provided balance between the number of issues on the ballot in August and in November.”

Here is a summary of what happened at the primaries.

The Missouri Right-to-Farm, Amendment 1: The measure was passed but by a small margin and there has been consideration of a recount on the votes. There were 498,751 votes in favor of the amendment, while 496,223 votes were cast against it. The Right-To-Farm Amendment would guarantee farmers and ranchers could continue with their livelihoods by producing food for others. However, there has been a lot of debate about how this will actually impact a family farmer because the wording does not have a strict definition of what the right to farm is. Opponents believe the amendment will support big agribusiness, and not aid the average farmer.

The Missouri Right to Bear Arms, Amendment 5: This amendment guarantees the inalienable rights of citizens to own and bear arms and associated accessories such as ammunition. The purpose declared in the Amendment for these arms is for the owner to be able to protect themselves, their family and their property. The amendment also removed the prior right to bear arms exception in the state constitution, which stated the right could not be applied towards concealed carry. This amendment was also approved.

Missouri Temporary Sales and Use Tax Increase for Transportation, Amendment 7: This amendment was shot down by voters. The amendment would have created a 0.75 increase in state sales taxes and would last for no more than 10 years. The increase would have been used to fund transportation projects. There has not been a tax increase for roads since 1992, or statewide tax increase since 1993.

Missouri Veterans Lottery Ticket, Amendment 8: This amendment would have established a lottery from which the revenue would have supported veterans programs in Missouri. However, the measure was defeated. The wording of the measure on the ballot was viewed as unfair by independent organizations. It stated that the new lottery tickets sales could lower sales of other lottery tickets, which fund education.

Missouri Electronic Data Protection, Amendment 9: This amendment was approved by voters. The amendment made it clear that electronic communications and data were protected against unreasonable searches and seizures under the Missouri Constitution.

The primaries also decided the candidates for the Missouri seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. Missouri is one of only 14 states which holds open primaries. This means voters do not need to have registered with a certain party to vote in the primary.

1st Congressional District: Lacy Clay, D. ran unopposed and will face Dan Elder, R. in the November election. Elder won the vote by little more than 550 votes.

2nd Congressional District: Both candidates, Ann Wagner, R. and, Arthur Lieber, D. ran unopposed in the primaries. They will face each other in the fall for the general election.

3rd Congressional District: Courtney Denton won the Democratic nomination, while Blaine Luetkemeyer won the Republican nomination. Luetkemeyer currently holds the 3rd District’s House seat.

4th Congressional District: Republican Vicky Hartzler, the incumbent, won 74.7 percent of the Republican vote, while her Democratic opponent, Nate Irvin, ran unopposed in the Democratic primary. They will face each other in the general election.

5th Congressional District: Emanuel Cleaver, the incumbent, won 82 percent of the Democratic vote, while Jacob Turk won 68.6 percent of the Republican vote, and will be running against Cleaver in the general election. Both candidates ran against an unusually large field of primary candidates, with four for the Republican nomination and five for the Democratic nomination.

6th Congressional District: Sam Graves, the incumbent, won 76.6 percent of the Republican vote, and Democratic candidate Bill Hedge won 51.7 percent of the Democratic ballots to run against Graves in the fall.

7th Congressional District: Billy Long, the Republican incumbent, won 62.4 percent of the Republican primary vote, Jim Evans, D. won 53.8 percent of the vote to run against Long in the fall.

8th Congressional District: Both the Republican and Democratic primaries were uncontested. Barbara Stocker, D. will be running against Jason Smith, R., the incumbent, in the fall.

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