The final countdown has begun until Governor Mike Parson will have to select a replacement for current State Treasurer Eric Schmitt who, last month, he announced would be named Attorney General.
Here is a collection of a few of the people who are being mentioned inside the second floor or are mentioning themselves for the position, broken down by those actively interested, those who haven’t ruled it out, and those who have indicated they are not interested.
State Representative Jean Evans – The first term representative from St. Louis County is a rising star inside a Republican Party without a particularly deep bench of women candidates. Evans has been a proven fundraiser who has won a tough district, combined with a background in business gives her both the political chops and business acumen to be a qualified choice. She would excel in campaigning statewide.
Renee Hulshof – An excellent communicator, Hulshof would immediately be someone in-demand on the campaign trail among Republican circles. Being the wife of former Congressman Kenny Hulshof, she could likely raise the money for the race and might be the one of the best people the Governor could pick on the trail.
State Representative Shamed Dogan – Rep. Dogan is the only African-American Republican in the General Assembly and has a large base of influential supporters in the St. Louis business community. The Ivy League-educated Dogan as a background working for Washington University and is someone who would be a historic choice.
Former State Senator David Pearce – Former Senator Pearce currently works in the Treasurer’s office and is probably the person who could do the job best on day one. He has a longtime friendship with Governor Parson and is someone respected by most everyone in the administration.
Judge Becky Borthwick – Many outside of Springfield may not have yet heard of Judge Borthwick, but she is one of the most impressive people in the Republican Party, man or woman. She is being considered and is a name that you will hear again regardless of whether she receives this appointment or not. Keep this column, one day it will be where you first heard of this star of the modern Missouri Republican Party.
Carrie Almond – The past president of the National Federation of Republican Women, Almond has legitimate connections to the Trump administration and has impressed many, not only in Missouri but throughout the county. It’s pretty clear that the Governor is giving every possibility to appointing a woman to the position and she would clearly be a boost to the administration on the campaign trail, especially considering her vast banking and finance experience.
State Representative Holly Rehder – Rep. Rehder is an active legislator with a business background who has been long rumored to be interested in seeking higher office. Earlier this week, she indicated that she was interested in the job.
Those who haven’t ruled it out:
House Budget Chairman Scott Fitzpatrick – The chairman would be imminently qualified, and as he is an aggressive budget chairman might even be a relief to see him in the administration. He is completely qualified and a terrific campaigner who won a tough primary in his first race. An appointment of this magnitude would set him on a course for an incredibly bright future.
Congresswoman Ann Wagner – The Congresswoman might be the biggest surprise on the list, but most everyone in the state expects her to look at the U.S. Senate seat in 2022 if Senator Blunt declines to run. Serving as State Treasurer would be one way to give her the chance to be in the state for four years and build the statewide profile that could help.
State Senator Sandy Crawford – Senator Crawford has a background in finance and would be someone who would leave a safe Republican state senate seat, a seat that happens to be the one left open when then Senator Parson was elected Lt. Governor.
Those who have indicated they are not interested:
Brenda Talent – The wife of former Senator Jim Talent, the woman who has been running the conservative Show-Me Institute has said that she isn’t interested, but is someone who was at the front of many people’s minds when the process started.
Congresswoman Vicki Hartzler – Many have long thought that Congresswoman Hartzler would at some point run for governor or U.S. Senate and serving as State Treasurer would be an instant statewide profile, but he has apparently turned down the offer of being considered.
Rachael Herndon was the editor at The Missouri Times and also produced This Week in Missouri Politics, published Missouri Times Magazine, and co-hosted the #MoLeg podcast. She joined The Missouri Times in 2014, returning to political reporting after working as a campaign and legislative staffer.
Rachael studied at the University of Missouri – Columbia. She lives in Jefferson City with her husband, Brandon, and their two children.