Less than two weeks away from Election Day, and the stakes are still high in the races for executive office.
Republicans have the advantage when it comes to raising funds in the race for lieutenant governor, secretary of state and treasurer, but having money doesn’t necessarily guarantee a victory on November 8th.
Here’s the latest from each race this week:
Lieutenant Governor: TOSS UP
Latest Missouri Times Poll: Carnahan 44% – Parson 43%
Parson is leading this race handily in terms of money at hand, but this race is literally too close to call. A recent Missouri Times poll showed Carnahan leading by just one point, with a margin of error at two points.
The state senator and former Polk County sheriff has roughly $500,000 on hand, compared to the son of late Gov. Mel Carnahan, who holds only $200,000. So far, Carnahan has spent more than $825,000 on his campaign, while Parson has only spent $95,923.76.
The contest for lieutenant governor had been low-key, with only a few TV ads mostly visible online, but has turned ugly in the past few weeks. Parson’s campaign put out a TV ad that attacked Carnahan for having a record of supporting President Obama in Congress, which was followed by a response from Carnahan’s camp: a TV ad featuring Parson’s former chief of staff, criticizing Parson for taking gifts from lobbyists and urging Missourians to vote for Carnahan.
— Mike Parson (@MikeParsonforMO) October 24, 2016
— Russ Carnahan (@russcarnahan) October 25, 2016
Former U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan
- Contributions this period: $309,106.06
- Contributions this election: $1,060,437.10
- Cash on hand: $209,793.95
Sen. Mike Parson
- Contributions this period: $525,183.75
- Contributions this election: $538,872.55
- Cash on hand: $501,066.50
Attorney General: LEAN HAWLEY
Latest Missouri Times Poll: Hawley 48% – Hensley 42%
The fight to become Missouri’s next attorney general has been in the spotlight for months now, trailing back to before the August primary. That fight has become an expensive one, with both Hawley and Hensley spending big in advertising to get their message out to voters.
Josh Hawley is still the favorite to win the race, though Teresa Hensley isn’t far behind. The gap seems to keep shrinking as the election draws closer.
This week, Hawley picked up endorsements from the Quincy Herald-Whig, an Illinois newspaper that also covers northeastern Missouri, and News-Press & Gazette Co. in northwest Missouri.
“Josh Hawley has the clearer sense of the attorney general’s responsibilities and how Missouri interests need to be protected. Voters are urged to elect Hawley,” the Herald-Whig wrote.
Hensley, meanwhile, landed the endorsement of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, who wrote: “Hensley’s tempered approach, dedication to fight for greater transparency and history of trial experience earn this newspaper’s endorsement for office.”
- Contributions this period: $1,105,496.76
- Contributions this election: $2,273,839.70
- Cash on hand: $1,148,376.41
- Contributions this period: $3,271,840.81
- Contributions this election: $3,279,965.81
- Cash on hand: $4,323,648.11
Secretary of State: LIKELY ASHCROFT
Latest Missouri Times Poll: Ashcroft 48% – Smith 38%
The son of another political dynasty here in Missouri, Ashcroft is the favorite to win this race. The son of the former U.S. Attorney General is campaigning with former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee this week, talking about Voter ID.
— Jay Ashcroft (@JayAshcroftMO) October 28, 2016
But his opponent has made it very clear she won’t go down without a fight. The Democrat and former KMOV anchor recently picked up the endorsement of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
But the most impressive statistic in this race is the money: Ashcroft has raised $1.2 million for his campaign, while Smith has accrued only half that with $600,000. However, they still have quite a bit left on hand: Ashcroft with nearly $400,000, Smith with $350,000.
- Contributions this period: $63,628.06
- Contributions this election: $603,720.93
- Cash on hand: $349,641.78
- Contributions this period: $367,876.00
- Contributions this election: $1,256,210.72
- Cash on hand: $397,129.28
State Treasurer: LIKELY SCHMITT
Latest Missouri Times Poll: Schmitt 49% – Baker 40%
If this election were to be decided by who could raise the most money, Republican Eric Schmitt would win by a landslide.
Schmitt’s campaign boasts a massive advantage, holding more than $2.5 million in cash on hand, compared to Baker’s $350,000.
Both campaigns released new TV ads this week.
— Judy Baker (@JudyBaker4MO) October 26, 2016
— Eric Schmitt (@Eric_Schmitt) October 26, 2016
Schmitt and Baker have continued on the campaign trail this week, stopping for rallies across the state.
Baker also picked up the endorsement of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the St. Louis American and the Columbia Daily Tribune this week, while Schmitt landed the Quincy Herald-Whig’s endorsement and the support of the Missouri Fraternal Order of Police.
Former Rep. Judy Baker
- Contributions this period: $60,538.73
- Contributions this election: $152,522.16
- Cash on hand: $350,314.78
Sen. Eric Schmitt
- Contributions this period: $158,070.00
- Contributions this election: $166,810.02
- Cash on hand: $2,540,033.26
Benjamin Peters was a reporter for The Missouri Times and Missouri Times Magazine and also produced the #MoLeg Podcast. He joined The Missouri Times in 2016 after working as a sports editor and TV news producer in mid-Missouri. Benjamin is a graduate of Missouri State University in Springfield.