By Scott Faughn
– Republican congressional candidate Rep. Jason Smith raised $308,000 since being nominated Feb. 9, while his Democratic opponent, Rep. Steve Hodges, trailed — raising $121,000 since receiving the nomination Feb. 16.
Smith will report donors from 30 counties throughout the district, following a fundraiser sponsored by several members of southeast Missouri’s delegation to the General Assembly, including Sen. Wayne Wallingford, Rep. Kathy Swan and Rep. Donna Lichtenegger. The event was also sponsored by key Cape Girardeau County Republicans Dr. William Kapp, Dr. Charles Cozean, and Gary Rust, president of Rust Communications.
For running in a heavy Republican district, Hodges was able to pull a significant level of support. His campaign noted that he received donations from more than 250 donors. The full reports for both candidates will be available after April 15.
Southeast Missouri’s special election will be held on June 4 to fill the seat vacated by Jo Ann Emerson — at the time Missouri’s longest-serving member of Congress — who resigned to become chief executive officer of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.
A public forum will be hosted by the the League of Women Voters and KRCU radio April 25 at the Cape Girardeau Career and Technology Center. Smith and Hodges have agreed to attend, along with Libertarian Party candidate Bill Slantz and Constitution Party candidate Doug Enyart.