Republican Primary: TOSS UP
Brunner has proven he wasn’t bluffing when he committed to completely self-fund his race. His follow-through on that declaration likely means there will be a top-of-the-ticket slugfest between Brunner and Greitens right up until the polls close. Brunner’s attacks have blunted Greitens’ momentum and by most actual poll accounts, they are in a neck-and-neck race.
His last week looks to consist of a bus tour, showcasing his manufacturing facility and his endorsement by former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee. His tagline — “Can’t Be Bought” — makes sense in a world where his opponents all have fundraising oddities.
The Brunner campaign seems committed to closing hard, and in a race where literally anyone could win, Brunner has positioned himself as one of the favorites.
Cash on Hand: $76k
Raised this Cycle: $7.1 million
Greitens showed that he means it when he says he is going to do things differently by receiving the largest contribution in state history from a group who is able to conceal it donors. He has built a campaign that gets more attention than anyone else’s and his fundraising has opened up a whole new chapter in state politics.
He has fully committed to a bus tour, and it seems like that will continue through the last week. While he previously decried negative advertising, he has launched attacks on Brunner, not only from the LG PAC – which has also attacked Hanaway, but now directly from his campaign.
Many are saying that while it’s still anyone’s race, that they would take Greitens’ chances over the field. After the last $2 million, he has all the money he needs to flood your web browser and your mailbox. It will be a truly amazing story if he crosses the finish line next week.
Cash on Hand: $628k
Raised this Cycle: $8.75 million
Former House Speaker Catherine Hanaway
The former Speaker has positioned her campaign very strategically and in a ode to her achievements, she has slowly moved up in the polls. Maybe most importantly, Hanaway has put herself in a position where most polls show her as the second choice of those who support other candidates. She caught a tough break in being endorsed by the Post-Dispatch and will likely see web ads hitting her on it.
The proof that she has been moving up in the polls is that LG PAC has now focused ads on her. If she can refrain from being damaged by the negative ads she could be in a place to benefit from the the loss of support by Brunner and Greitens.
Cash on Hand: $696k
Raised this Cycle: $5.8 million
Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder
The scenario has gone like this from the day Kinder filed. He would start in the lead due to his name ID. The other campaigns would go up on TV earlier than him and would steal some of his support. Then at the end Brunner and Greitens’ attacks would damage the other enough that the primary voters would turn to the most familiar name.
Seems like a plan that could be taking shape. His latest ads criticizing his opponents mudslinging seems to be following that theory.
Kinder received the highest ranking of anyone in the race from both the NRA and Missouri Right to Life. He seems to be enjoying the campaign and probably has done everything he needs to do if the aforementioned scenario is going to play out.
Cash on Hand: $256k
Raised this Cycle: $2.7 million
Republican Primary: TOSS UP
Sen. Mike Parson
Parson seemed to start off in the lead in this race when he entered it, but once it became clear that Rex Sinquefield was willing to open up an unlimited budget for his opponent, it was destined to be a close race.
This last week, he has focused on his law enforcement background, at a time when Republican primary voters seem very willing to rally behind the badge. It will be close and unpredictable, but Parson probably has a better claim to undecided voters.
Cash on Hand: $347k
Raised this Cycle: $1.35 million
Randles has secured approximately a $2.5 million to $1.4 million spending advantage and has made the race razor close. A determining factor has been the willingness of the Club for Growth who supports her dropping scorching hits on Parson and his unwillingness to respond in kind.
Randles will be a solid general election candidate and has run a solid campaign. If someone could come from out of nowhere to knock off a senior senator in a statewide race, then it’s 2016. Randles has every opportunity to do so.
Cash on Hand: $80k
Raised this Cycle: $2.5 million
Democratic Primary: SAFE CARNAHAN
Former U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan
This had a chance to be a real race, but the former congressman has done what he needed to do win. Perhaps more importantly, his primary opponents haven’t made him spend his money allowing him to save it for November.
Cash on Hand: $338k
Raised this Cycle: $495k
Republican Primary: LEAN SCHAEFER
Sen. Kurt Schaefer
This week will be the make or break week. Schaefer can compete this week on the airwaves and his attacks on Hawley’s representation of the People’s Mujahedeen of Iran now have had enough points behind them to see if they will work. Schaefer has scored big endorsements from Missouri Right to Life and the NRA.
Many felt that he had the best issue argument, but there was no way he was ever going to match the money spent by the PACs from the East Coast supporting Hawley. This race will be close, very close but many feel that the negative on both sides will be a wash and undecideds opt for the prosecutor argument over the philosophical argument.
Cash on Hand: $796k
Raised this Cycle: $4.8 million
University of Missouri Professor Josh Hawley
He ran a tough race coming from nowhere to actually leading in some polls. He has changed the dynamic of fundraising bringing in lots of East Coast money and skillfully utilizing federal anonymous donor PACs to attack his opponent. Hawley is in a position to win, and if he does, he will have successfully changed the job description from chief law enforcement officer to defender of religion. Very interesting and very close race.
Cash on Hand: $971k
Raised this Cycle: $3.7 million
Democratic Primary: LEAN ZIMMERMAN
St. Louis County Assessor Jake Zimmerman
Zimmerman had the cash advantage and used it to get up on television first and focus on the concept of “fairness.” His cash advantage has been three-to-one, which is why the race leans his way. One interesting note is that he has chosen to respond to being attacked. The race may be close but his cash advantage makes him likely able to withstand the attacks in the closing days. The Post-Dispatch endorsement helped.
Cash on Hand: $765k
Raised this Cycle: $1.5 million
Former Cass County Prosecutor Teresa Hensley
She has used some of her money to attack Zimmerman, likely confirming that she needed to bring his numbers down. She can still win this race because she has the advantage of being a woman in a Democratic primary and she was able to raise a respectable amount of money. However, as it stands today it would be an upset, but not a big one.
Cash on Hand: $44k
Raised this Cycle: $548k
Democratic Primary: LEAN BAKER
Former State Rep. Judy Baker
Baker has her campaign firing on all cylinders at the right time. She has the advantage of being a woman in a Democratic primary.
Now, she is seeing some union backing and scored the influential NARAL endorsement.
Baker should win, but Contreras is working very hard. It could be a win by a closer margin than she originally expected.
Cash on Hand: $131k
Raised this Cycle: $229k
He has been working all over the state and that work was just recognized by scoring the endorsement of the liberal St. Louis Post-Dispatch, which still has stroke in a Democratic primary. He has also been racking up and showcasing the endorsements he has garnered from scores of elected Democrats around the state.
He is the underdog, but we have it a lean because of the outstanding campaign he has run.
Cash on Hand: $59k
Raised this Cycle: $321k
SECRETARY OF STATE
Republican Primary: LEAN ASHCROFT
Ashcroft’s enormous name ID advantage has made him the favorite from the start. While he has a strong opponent in Sen. Kraus, there isn’t a lot of evidence that the attacks are hurting Ashcroft enough to move the race a great deal.
It will be interesting to watch Ashcroft attempt to close this race in a unique environment.
Cash on Hand: $52k
Raised this Cycle: $825k
Sen. Will Kraus
The good news for Kraus is that he has one of the best commercials of the cycle running showcasing his military experience. The bad news is that he not only has to introduce himself to the state, but cut into Ashcroft’s name ID advantage or turn it against him.
That is a tall order, but Kraus knew that going in. It will be interesting to watch for a July surprise to see if this race is altered in the closing days.
Cash on Hand: $3,500
Raised this Cycle: $871k
COMPETITIVE STATE SENATE PRIMARIES
#1 SD 23 TOSS UP
This race could be close to a LEAN EIGEL, but a few weeks ago former Rep. Zerr seemed to throw her campaign into high gear. From what we understand, Zerr started off with a lead, then Eigel passed her building a relatively significant lead and was close to running away with it.
However, since her campaign rebooted, she is gaining ground and has made it a competitive race. There are two factors that will likely determine whether or not she wins 1. Her voter turnout effort, and 2. whether Judge Mike Carter get north of 20% of the vote. Eigel seems to have built a lead, but it’s not insurmountable.
- Michael Carter
Cash on Hand: $100
Raised this Cycle:$100k
- Bill Eigel
Cash on Hand: $164k
Raised this Cycle: $594k
- Rep. Anne Zerr
Cash on Hand: $55k
Raised this Cycle: $510k
#2 SD 15 LEAN STREAM
This race started out as a LEAN STREAM and Rep. Koenig really worked hard to make it a close race, and even a TOSS UP for a long time. While he could still win the race, it appears that Koenig’s attacks on Stream aren’t narrowing the gap fast enough.
These Senate races are known to break late and fast, but it will require a large break to Koenig to win. Further, this will be one of the rare weeks in the campaign that Stream will be able to match Koenig on television and come close in mail. It’s not over, but it’s leaning Stream in the final days.
- Rep. Andrew Koenig
Cash on Hand: $130k
Raised this Cycle: $267k
- Former Rep. Rick Stream
Cash on Hand: $82k
Raised this Cycle: $179k
#3 SD 11 LEAN RIZZO
This race is more heated than competitive. Many were surprised that Podhola, who was seen as a rising star, take on Rizzo in this primary. The race has been Rizzo’s to lose from the start and his fundraising advantage, combined with Governor Nixon’s endorsement, has put him in the lead. Our Missouri Times-commissioned poll put him in the lead with a two-to-one advantage.
Podhola has gone negative against Rizzo, and that could tighten the race. If it does, then the Kansas City Building Trades endorsement would look smart. But if not, it will have a large number of people in labor pointing fingers.
- Jessica Podhola
Cash on Hand: $1,890
Raised this Cycle: $113,140.99
- Rep. John Rizzo
Cash on Hand: $41k
Raised this Cycle: $370k
#4 SD 21 SAFE HOSKINS
Denny Hoskins has done everything he needed to do in order to ensure this race never really took off. He really wasn’t in any danger from the start, and is the only one on this list who can sleep soundly on the night of Aug. 1.
- Rep. Denny Hoskins
Cash on Hand: $109k
Raised this Cycle: $230.5k
- Former Rep. Mike McGhee
Cash on Hand: $772
Raised this Cycle: $12k