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Kunce touts opposition to corporate power, weighs in on Medicaid expansion


With more than a year to go before the primary elections, Democrat Lucas Kunce is making his case with an emphasis on the power of large corporations in his bid for U.S. Senate

“We absolutely need to end the corporate monopoly domination of our economy, and the reason that we have that is that we have companies that are able to buy off our politicians and use them to write laws that strip our communities for parts,” Kunce said Friday. “I think we need to abolish corporate PACs altogether.” 

Kunce said corporate control harmed the state’s agriculture industry, Black-owned businesses, and Missouri communities as a whole.

Kunce appeared on a virtual event hosted by the Boone County Democratic Club to discuss his background, from his time growing up in mid-Missouri to his 13 years in the Marine Corps and his work as director of national security for the nonprofit Economic Liberties Project. He also outlined his stances on policy issues, from economic development to a proposed shift toward renewable resources for the military. 

Kunce fielded questions on issues related to both the Missouri Legislature and in Congress, supporting President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan as well as funding for Medicaid expansion in Missouri.

“It’s a benefit to everybody to have that,” Kunce said. “It creates jobs, it helps people out. … It’s a politicized issue, but I support everyone having the health care they need.” 

Kunce also voiced his support for universal health care, increased background checks for firearms sales, and the abolishment of the filibuster as a legislative tool. 

Kunce is running for the U.S. Senate seat left open after Roy Blunt announced he would not run for re-election in 2022. Kunce faces former Democratic state Sen. Scott Sifton in the Democratic race, while Attorney General Eric Schmitt, former Gov. Eric Greitens, and Mark McCloskey are among the contenders for the Republican nomination. 

Kunce reported healthy contribution numbers after launching his campaign in March; by the first quarter deadline, his team reported nearly $300,000 in fundraising. Kunce noted Friday he had not taken donations from corporate PACs.