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Hough running for Wasson’s seat, will face Burlison in primary


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Greene County Commissioner Lincoln Hough ended months-long speculation he would run for term-limited Sen. Jay Wasson’s seat by confirming that he would seek an office in Jefferson City again, as first reported by the Springfield News-Leader.

Hough left the House in 2016 to run for Greene County Commissioner. As numerous politicians around have put their names forward to run for State Senate seats in 2018, Hough joined them Tuesday with an announcement of his own.

“The community leaders around Springfield and in Nixa and Ozark have been asking if I would do it, if I would consider doing it,” Hough told The Missouri Times. “It’s something my wife and I have been talking about and just had not not pulled the trigger yet. After a number of meetings and quite frankly seeing the support from the community, we decided we’d just go ahead and get in.”

Hough will run against former Rep. Eric Burlison, a leading right-to-work advocate during his tenure in the House. Burlison announced he would run last month. He term-limited out of the House in 2016, while Hough had two years to go before he declined to seek re-election.

Hough says his time as county commissioner has given him a fresh perspective on politics from a local level, particularly the need to support and encourage local control.

“The issues we deal with in Jefferson City have a significant impact on local municipalities, whether you’re county governments or city governments,” Hough said. “I’ve just noticed how vitally important it is we continue to be a party that supports local control for our municipalities.”

That commitment has to include financial support, he said. Counties currently face struggled with overcrowding in their jails and not receiving due per diems from the state for handling prisoners.

Hough added that he would also like to get involved in the appropriations aspect of the capitol, considering he served in the House Budget Committee during his time in Jefferson City. He also wants to focus on tort reform and continue his work on job training that inspired legislation from Wasson, the man he’s looking to replace.

Hough also has substantial financial resources at his disposal. He has roughly $160,000 in his campaign committee, according to the Missouri Ethics Commission, and a newly formed political action committee, called the Lincoln PAC, has already raised another $40,000. Hough is not associated with the PAC that bears his name.