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Statewide and House tipsheet: 2020

Statewide Races


With filing closed, the biggest question in the race was answered. And no, former Governor Eric Greitens did not file. If Greitens would have run, he would have instantly been a top contender in an epic race. The biggest winner in that contest would have been Nicole Galloway. If Greitens would have run, then she could have potentially defeated him in a toss-up race. Even if incumbent Governor Mike Parson had won, he would have spent all of his money and had a very divided party.
Now Galloway has to hope that Trump’s numbers continue to tank. She has the best possible top of the ticket she could have hoped for in former Vice President Joe Biden and good fundraising. However, she needs a race-changing event. Coronavirus is potentially that opening if Trump and Parson fumble it. Until more of the race plays out, Parson remains the heavy favorite, but there is plenty of time — and our culture is currently in plenty of flux — to change that.
As for the primary, Rep. Jim Neely is a good person and good legislator and will try and unite some Greitens bros to make it a race, but now he has to fight for that space with the 2018 Auditor nominee Saundra McDowell. Currently, with the pandemic monopolizing all of the public’s attention, it seems unlikely Parson will even have to spend money in the primary. 

(R) Governor Mike Parson
Contributions this election: $2,528,504.50
Cash on hand: $1,389,326.15
Uniting Missouri PAC cash on hand: $5,120,860.89
(R) Rep. Jim Neely
Contributions this election: $88,296.68
Cash on hand: $20,270.67
(R) Saundra McDowell
No filing reports available.
(D) State Auditor Nicole Galloway
Contributions this election: $1,222,986.07
Cash on hand: $730,289.12
Keep Government Accountable PAC cash on hand: $711,072.35

Lt. Governor 

This race was close to going from the most boring possible coronation of Lt. Governor Mike Kehoe to a white-hot primary and general. If Senator Bob Onder would have run then it would have been a tier 1 primary. And if that primary ignited, it’s likely that a top tier Democrat, say Senator Scott Sifton, might have made the general a real race.
As things turned out, it’s back to the coronation everyone thought it would be a month ago. Mike Carter of St. Charles County will be colorful in the primary, but is unlikely to worry Kehoe.
In the general, former Kansas City Councilwoman Alissia Canady will be the Democratic standard-bearer choosing to forego a race for Jackson County prosecutor. However, she begins the race as a decided underdog. 

(R) Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe
Contributions this election: $1,445,196.26
Cash on hand:  $369,600.20
American Dream PAC cash on hand: $580,507.39
(R) Arnie C. AC Dienoff
No filing reports available.
(R) Aaron T Wisdom
No filing reports available.
(R) Mike Carter
No filing reports available.
(D) Gregory A Upchurch
No filing reports available.
(D) Former Kansas City Councilwoman Alissia Canady
No filing reports available. 

Attorney General

If you thought the Lt. Governor race was boring, welcome to the AG race. At least the Lt. Governor race had two weeks of intrigue speculating about a potential primary. Attorney General Eric Schmitt has been the clear leader in the race since the day Governor Parson appointed him. The only interesting part of this race will be the speculation over whether Schmitt runs for U.S. Senate seat if Senator Roy Blunt retires in 2022 or runs for Governor in 2024.
However, it should be noted that Democratic candidate Elad Gross is running very hard. His enthusiasm and aggressive social media efforts are noteworthy. He may have a future in politics after this race. 

(R) Attorney General Eric Schmitt
Contributions this election: $826,861.45
Cash on hand: $632,381.81
MO Opportunity PAC cash on hand: $1,624,904.03
(D) Elad Gross
Contributions this election: $120,374.88
Cash on hand: $34,767.74
(D) Rich Finneran
Contributions this election: $111,460.52
Cash on hand: $84,700.05

Secretary of State

Secretary Jay Ashcroft has put together a string of decisions in office on issues from right-to-work to abortion that has given him a brand of independence and fairminded decisions. He will have no trouble with his re-election. The biggest question for him on the 2020 campaign trail will be: What will he run for in 2022 or 2024?
Even as a very large underdog, Yinka Faleti has impressed nearly everyone he has met. He is another 2020 Democratic candidate that, if he can show well — and the bar for a statewide Democrat running against an incumbent showing well is very low — he is someone who will be mentioned as a top candidate for a future race.  

(R) Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft
Contributions this election: $382,334.82
Cash on hand: $293,388.01
Committee for Liberty PAC cash on hand: $98,527.70
(D) Yinka Faleti
Contributions this election: $109,773.51
Cash on hand: $70,033.81


It’s been thought that Treasurer’s race would be the best chance for Democrats to flip a statewide election. Scott Fitzpatrick has proven, just as when he was House Budget chair, to be competent and serious. He has also begun to show more political savvy in his new role with his “stop socialism” rhetoric that plays very well within the Republican party. He avoided a primary, which wasn’t a foregone conclusion; now he just needs to put together a fundraising operation and he will move this race to safe Republican.
Former State Representative Vicki Englund is a veteran politician who knows how to campaign and has the best chance outside of Nicole Galloway to post a win for Democrats in November. It will likely come down to fundraising — and that is likely to be tied to how President Trump is running in the fall. If he is only ahead in single digits, then Englund could potentially show a path to victory. She needs some external factors to change the dynamic to make this race competitive. 

(R) State Treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick
Contributions this election: $385,427.17
Cash on hand: $261,493.75
Missourians for a Responsible Budget PAC cash on hand: $131,070.00
(D) Former State Rep. Vicki Englund
Contributions this election: $25,393.91
Cash on hand: $14,952.81

House Races

In recent Missouri political history, you could chart who would have the advantage in the House by the national political climate. This is likely no different, however, with Joe Biden as the Democratic standard-bearer, he will be the first Democrat not to be an albatross Missouri Democrats since Barack Obama nearly won Missouri 12 years ago.
While having a clear fundraising advantage and a stronger institutional infrastructure, Democrats should have a little better climate just from Biden leading their ticket. Also, it remains to be seen if the House Republican Leadership Representative in charge of their campaign can effectively manage a successful operation.
As filing closes, there are approximately 15 seats that could be in play depending on the national mood in November. That list contracted as Representative Mary Elizabeth Coleman was able to scare off opposition to run unopposed in a district that is one of the most competitive in the state.
Republicans are likely to target HD 14 where Rep. Matt Sain isn’t running for re-election, HD 35 where Democratic rising star Rep. Keri Ingle just flipped the seat in 2018, HD 70 where Rep. Paula Brown also flipped the seat in 2018, and of course HD 99 where Rep. Trish Gunby flipped the seat in a special election last fall. However, it’s unlikely Republicans can win one, if any of these seats, as it was quite an accomplishment to win any of these except HD 99 in the first place as they are very Democratic-leaning.
Republicans having a supermajority, of course, means they have many more seats to defend. HD 135 is always hotly contested where Rep. Steve Helms will square off against probably the Democrats best recruit of 2020: Betsy Fogle. Also: HD 65 where Rep. Tom Hannegan will face former Rep. Bill Otto; HD 136 where Rep. Elijah Haahr is retiring and the seat isn’t a given; HD 94 where Rep. Jim Murphy will defend his seat. There will also be a tough race in Buchanan County, and Boone County will have real races for Rep. Cheri Toalson Reisch and Rep. Sara Walsh.
It’s still far too early to make an accurate prediction, but look for Democrats to be able to modestly improve on their numbers.