Call makes endorsements for Nov. 8 election

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92nd Missouri House District

Voters in Affton will be deciding between current incumbent Rep. Michael Burton, D-Affton, and Republican Bob Mahacek, a newcomer to public office. Burton did not return The Call’s questionnaire for this race, nor did he return the questionnaire from the August primary earlier this year, making him ineligible for endorsement. However, The Call is familiar with Burton and some of his priorities, having spent several years covering his campaign to save Tower Tee, a run for the County Council and successfully winning election to state representative in 2020.

Mahacek is a newcomer to public office and, in an interview for a candidate profile piece, we like what he said about “attacking problems, not people,” especially in a time when attacking people seems to be the go-to. Constituents in the 92nd District have two strong candidates to choose from depending on what side of the aisle they fall on. We appreciate that Mahacek took the time to respond to his local paper’s questionnaire but ultimately in this race, The Call endorses no one. Let’s hope Burton responds to our questionnaire the next time he chooses to run for office.

93rd Missouri House District

Voters in the 93rd District will decide between current incumbent Bridget Walsh Moore, D-Affton, and another newcomer to elected office, Republican Kenneth Abram.

While we believe both candidates would serve their constituents well in the Missouri House, The Call endorses Walsh Moore in this race for the obvious knowledge that she has about being a representative, and with her emphasis on health care and her own experience with cancer. With health care costs being identified by constituents as one of their concerns, she would be a leader on this issue.

94th Missouri House District

In this race for the 94th District seat representing Oakville, we believe Oakville residents also have two good candidates in Republican incumbent Rep. Jim Murphy and Democratic challenger Kyle Kerns.

Murphy has proven to be an effective legislator during his time in office. He was named the Freshman Legislator of the Year by the GOP in his first year as representative in 2019 and his commitment to the 95th District is obvious, evidenced by the several food drives he sponsored and volunteered at during the pandemic to ensure all 94th District residents had access to food, as well as basically being single-handedly responsible for bringing state-led COVID-19 vaccine drives to South County.

We applaud Kern’s focus on education and support for seniors, but we also can’t deny that Murphy has proven that he is committed to the 94th District and its constituents beyond party lines. The Call endorses Murphy.

95th Missouri House District

This race is a rematch of November 2020, when Michael O’Donnell, R-Oakville, beat former Mehlville School District teacher Ann Zimpfer, a Democrat.

We applaud Zimpfer’s commitment and background in education, and we feel that O’Donnell brings important experience to the Missouri House as a municipal bonding professional and like we said in 2020, we believe Oakville residents have two strong candidates to choose from depending on what side of the aisle you fall on. However, with continued economic impacts from the pandemic, we believe O’Donnell’s background in finances is important at a time like this. The Call endorses O’Donnell.

96th Missouri House District

Voters in this race for the 96th House District have two strong candidates to choose from: Brad Christ and Leslie Derrington. We believe both candidates would serve well in the House. Both candidates are young, enthusiastic, qualified and eager to serve: Christ has been busy knocking on doors and talking with voters, while Derrington has been busy putting together disability-advocacy town halls.

But we believe that voters in this district, which includes Sunset Hills, Crestwood and parts of Fenton, will find Christ’s ideas more appealing, including tackling inflation, which he identified as the single most important issue in this race, and his commitment to law enforcement. The Call endorses Christ.

24th Missouri Senate District

Voters have three viable, energetic candidates running for the 24th District Senate seat. The district is “new” to South County, after redistricting earlier this year. The district now represents Sunset Hills, portions of Fenton and other parts of unincorporated South County.

LaDonna Higgins is the Libertarian candidate running in this race and we appreciate that she took the time to fill out our questionnaire while other third-party candidates running in other races did not.

George Hruza is the Republican candidate in this race. He has not held public office before, but as an immigrant from Czechoslovakia, his upbringing could bring a unique perspective to the legislature and the 24th District.

Tracy McCreery is the Democratic candidate in the race for the 24th and is no stranger to Jefferson City. She was first elected to the House as an independent in 2011 and then ran and won as Democrat in 2014, 2016, 2018 and 2020.

McCreery has endorsements from the St. Louis County Police Association and the Fraternal Order of Police, and during a time when both police accountability and public safety have been identified as priorities by constituents across the county, we believe these endorsement and her background in the legislature make her the strongest candidate in this race. The Call endorses McCreery.

3rd St. Louis County Council District

Voters in the 3rd County Council District are lucky this year: They have two candidates running — Democrat Vicki Englund, a former state representative and Lindbergh school board director, and Republican Dennis Hancock, former mayor of Fenton who served in that position from 2001 to 2013.

Both candidates’ resumes show a strong track record of commitment to public service and both have the knowledge of what being an elected official entails and both would serve well on the County Council as long as either candidate doesn’t get caught up in the bickering that seems to plague county government. However, in this race, The Call endorses Hancock for his familiarity with Fenton and the 3rd District after over a decade as mayor.

5th St. Louis County Council District

Incumbent Lisa Clancy, D-Maplewood, is running against Republican Steven Bailey, a retired professor who has run unsuccessfully for elected office in the past.

We like Clancy for her background in education and advocacy for women, families and minority groups, and her experience can’t be denied since she is the incumbent. We do have some ethical concerns about her tenure however, after it was revealed that she was paid to write grants for a medical marijuana company seeking a license while she was a member of the council. Clancy denies wrongdoing, but both the county and the St. Louis region in general have been plagued by scandals and we would hope that elected officials would carefully scrutinize any of their actions to ensure it didn’t create any conflict of interest, or illusion of.

The Call endorses Clancy, in part for her experience. Hopefully her next term will be free of any conflict-of-interest investigations.”

St. Louis County Executive

Three candidates are running to be St. Louis County Executive: Incumbent Democrat Sam Page. Democrat-turned-recent Republican Mark Mantovani and Green Party candidate Randall Holmes.

Mantovani did not return The Call’s questionnaire by the deadline, which is surprising since he has completed when he has run for office in the past. Because he did not return the questionnaire, he is ineligible for endorsement.

On the other hand, the past several months have seen Page’s administration plagued by scandal, although how much of that can directly be blamed on him in his position as county executive is debatable.

We hope that whoever the next county executive is, they are able to put aside any bickering between the legislative and executive branches of county to ensure that the region keeps moving forward. Dysfunction gets us nowhere.

The Call endorses Page.