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From gas station pizza to broccoli, here’s what Missouri politicians eat on the campaign trail

When asked about eating on the campaign trail, Sen. John Rizzo hit the nail on the head: “In a tough race, it’s whatever you can get quickly and then get back in the field.” 

But when Missouri candidates do find themselves with enough time to grab some grub on the road, what are their go-to options? From vegetables to fast food to fried bologna sandwiches, here’s a look at what some 2020 candidates are consuming on the trail this year. 

(Answers have been edited for grammar or style only.)

Jill Schupp, candidate for Missouri’s 2nd Congressional District

Broccoli (steamed or raw)

Ann Wagner, candidate for re-election to Missouri’s 2nd Congressional District

Bite size Snickers

Mike Parson, candidate for governor (current officeholder)


Nicole Galloway, candidate for governor 

Bambinos Cafe in Springfield, Gates BBQ in Kansas City, Fiddlestiks in Hannibal, Pasta House Co in St. Louis, and oranges and trail mix on the campaign bus. And I will always order toasted ravioli if it’s on the menu in any city. 

Mike Kehoe, candidate for lieutenant governor (current office holder)

Fried bologna sandwich 

Alissia Canady, candidate for lieutenant governor

My campaign cravings are gummy bears and French fries — however, not to be eaten together. 

Yinka Faleti, candidate for secretary of state

Campaign trail mix 

Eric Schmitt, candidate for attorney general (current officeholder)

Since I can’t eat pork steak on the road, beef jerky and a Monster Energy drink.

Scott Fitzpatrick, candidate for state treasurer (current officeholder)

Chick-fil-a — #2 meal

Vicki Englund, candidate for state treasurer

Trail mix, of course!

Lauren Arthur, candidate for re-election to SD 17

In the morning (and afternoon and evening), doughnuts from the greatest doughnut place in the world — which just happens to be in my district — Donut King. On Election Night, I’m a traditionalist and must have pizza. The best pizza, and maybe the most delicious thing I’ve ever tasted, is a seasonal pizza that combines Joe’s KC BBQ and Minsky’s. It was around on primary night; sadly, I think it’s gone now, and I’ll have to think of another pizza option.

Judy Baker, candidate for SD 19

I’ve been spending time in Cooper County. I love, love the fried okra at P&P’s Chicken and Fish in Boonville. The shrimp is great too!

Doug Beck, candidate for SD 1

QT breakfast pizza 

Deb Lavender, candidate for SD 15

Peanut butter 

Mike Moon, candidate for SD 29

I think my favorite was the BBQ Station in Cassville. I hadn’t had much to eat one particular day, and I think it was after 3 p.m. when I stopped by the restaurant. I had been going door-to-door, and I was famished.  The sandwich I ordered was beyond delicious!

John Rizzo, candidate for re-election to SD 11

In a tough race, it’s whatever you can get quickly and then get back in the field. You can always tell who’s working hard by sunburns and weight loss. I always liked HiBoy Drive-In for the hamburgers: classic hamburger, locally owned, several locations around Independence, really good Americana fried foods.

Holly Rehder, candidate for SD 27

I would say my favorite is fried Twinkies and fried Oreos. Those you can only get during the fall at the fairs and carnivals so campaignin in September and October and getting to eat those is my favorite!

Steve Roberts, candidate for SD 5

Byrd and Barrel’s chicken nuggets. It’s a local chicken joint that’s just across the street from my campaign office. The food is locally sourced, and they’ve even got a drive through for when I’m in a rush.

Caleb Rowden, candidate for re-election to SD 19

Pretzel bites from Room 38. Our team goes there on Mondays for lunch … and they are incredible. In a normal year, the answer might be different. But this is clearly not a normal election year.

Barbara Washington, candidate for SD 9

Lays potato chips and grapes

Ashley Aune, candidate for HD 14

Since I’m home all the time and often don’t have time to think about food, my go-to quick meal on a busy day has become PB&Js. 

Trish Gunby, candidate for re-election to HD 99


Keri Ingle, candidate for re-election to HD 35

Mexican pizzas from Taco Bell (until Nov. 1) and flat whites from Starbucks.

James Shackelford, candidate for HD 16

Coffee. But if I had to say an actual food it would be bánh mì (Vietnamese sandwich).

Wayne Wallingford, candidate for HD 147

You can’t go wrong eating Taco Bell tacos!

Editor’s Note: The author of this piece has a penchant for eating at Taco Bell so she especially appreciated the answers from Sen. Wayne Wallingford and Rep. Keri Ingle. 

This story has been updated.