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What’s on the Ballot: 2018 Midterm Election Preview

Zartasha Sani, Reporter

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On Nov. 6, the general midterm election will be held nationwide. What will be on the ballot is unique to the district that a person is registered to vote. For the Parkville area there are a few important decisions to make on Election Day.

Senate

 On the federal level, incumbent Claire McCaskill (D) is up for re-election in the Senate. She is running against Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley (R). This is a pivotal seat because in the 2016 presidential election, President Donald J. Trump won Missouri by 19 points. A Republican win would turn the state red; currently McCaskill is the only democratic senator from Missouri.

Hawley and McCaskill are within one or two points of each other in the polls. Either one of them could win by a narrow margin, depending on how many people from each party turn out to vote.

McCaskill’s platform includes proposals to cut wasteful spending, protect consumers and to expand the job market in the U.S. She is a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Homeland Security Committee. Before being elected to the Senate, McCaskill was a courtroom prosecutor in Kansas City, a Jackson County Prosecutor and Missouri State Auditor.

Hawley calls himself a constitutional conservative. He has litigated at the Supreme Court and the federal court of appeals. He has previously fought against the Waters of the United States Rule and the Clean Power Plan because he believes these are overreaches of the federal government. He is an advocate for religious liberty and was one of the lead lawyers on the Hobby Lobby case. He was also a lead attorney in the Hosanna-Tabor case at the Supreme Court, which protected the right of churches.

There are also three other candidates running for the same senate seat. Japeth Campbell is the libertarian candidate, Jo Crain is the Green Party candidate and Craig O’Dear is the independent candidate.

U.S. House of Representatives

Congressman Sam Graves (R) is up for re-election in the House of Representatives this year as well. He is running against Henry Martin (D) and Dan Hogan (L) for the 6th Congressional District. Missouri currently has eight members in the U.S. House of Representatives, six of whom are Republicans.

Graves has represented Missouri’s 6th Congressional District in the U.S. since 2001. He serves as Chairman of the House Subcommittee of Highways and Transit and is a member of the House Committee on Armed Services. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia and received his degree in Agronomy. Graves supports anti-abortion legislation, lowering corporate taxes as a means of promoting economic growth and supports the repeal of the 2010 Affordable Care Act.

This will be Martin’s first run for the senate. He is an Army veteran and served in the Persian Gulf for Operation Desert Shield as well as Operation Desert Storm. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from Lincoln University. Martin is a proponent of the Second Amendment, but says it should be regulated in order to lessen the amount of gun violence. He supports the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s interpretation of the Second Amendment and its limits. He is pro-abortion rights because he believes family planning is a key to combating poverty. He is a proponent of an affordable secondary education. He believes in a modest tax raise in the top tax bracket to help fund secondary education and make college more affordable. Martin views the immigration problem from a perspective of reform and agrees that those seeking asylum should not be treated as illegal aliens and believes in a pathway to citizenship for DACA recipients while continuing to secure the border.

Hogan is running as an independent candidate. He served as a staff sergeant from 1998-2009 and active duty sergeant from 2009-2012. He graduated from the Community College of the Air Force, received a bachelor’s degree from Ashworth College in 2009, a bachelor’s degree from Peru State College and a master’s degree in Organization Management. He is personally anti-abortion, but his website states that he supports everyone’s individual rights when it comes to abortion. He believes that states should determine what is best for their schools and students. He supports the Second Amendment but is open to discussion on what the best way to reduce firearm violence could be.

State Senate District 34

The State Senate Race is comprised of Tony Luetkemeyer (R) and Martin T. Rucker II (D). Luetkemeyer is a fifth generation Missourian and attended the University of Missouri-Columbia to pursue law. He worked as an intern in the Domestic Policy Council under George W. Bush. He has also served on the University of Missouri Board of Curators to help keep college tuition low for students. Finally, he was a clerk for a Missouri Supreme Court Judge. He believes in keeping taxes low for Missouri families and businesses. He believes states should have more control over education. He supports term limits for statewide offices. He is against sanctuary cities.

Rucker is also a fifth generation Missourian and a University of Missouri graduate. After college, Rucker was drafted to the Kansas City Chiefs and has also played for the Cleveland Browns, Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys. Rucker then became a union craftsman and joined the Heavy Construction Laborers Local 663. He currently works with Kissick Construction Company as a project engineer. He wants to work on healthcare reform because he feels that Missourians deserve affordable healthcare. He supports the expansion of Medicaid. His priority is supporting a plan which makes veterans’ healthcare a priority. He supports legislation that actively advances workers’ right to collectively bargain. He also supports legislation that punishes any kind of discrimination in the workplace. He supports public education, expanded funding for public education and transparency and accountability from charter schools.

State House District 13.

This race is comprised of Vic Allred (R.) and Mitch Weber (D). Incumbent Nick Marshall (R.) is not running for re-election due to terms limits.

Allred is an entrepreneur and small business owner. He is the current owner or co-owner of five New Orleans themed French Quarter café’s, called Jazz, A Louisiana Kitchen. He has served as a board of Director for the National Restaurant Association representing the State of Missouri and also serves on the Executive Committee of Visit KC. He has also a part Chairman of the Missouri Restaurant Association and Past President of the Greater Kansas City Restaurant Associations. Allred believes in creating jobs to promote growth in the economy. He is endorsed by the Missouri Right to Life coalition and the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association.

Weber has grown up in the Midwest and has been a broadcast journalist for 16 years. He is a graduate of Fort Hays State University and has worked with companies like FOX 4, 41 Action News and Kansas City Live. His company Toto TV production is currently producing a documentary on Parkville and Park University. Weber supports Proposition B, which, increases the minimum wage for Missourians, expanded Medicaid coverage and wants to make healthcare affordable for all. He wants to protect and support public school funding, increasing teacher salaries and funding to school districts. He believes all children should have access to a quality public education. He believes in increased funding to Missouri infrastructure to fix roads, create jobs and expand economic growth in Missouri.

The 2018 midterm election sample ballot for Parkville/Kansas City

State Auditor

Saundra McDowell- Republican

Nicole Galloway- Democrat

Sean O’Toole- Libertarian

Don Fitz-Green

Jacob Luetkemeyer- Constituion

Platte County Presiding Commissioner

Ron Schieber

David Park

Platte County- County Auditor

Kevin Robinson

Platte County- County Clerk

Nancy Armstrong

Platte County- County Collector

Sheila L. Palmer

Platte County- County Prosecutor

Eric Zahnd

Judges

Shall Judge W. Brent Powell of the Missouri Supreme Court be retained in office?

Yes

No

Shall Judge Mary Rhodes Russell of the Missouri Supreme Court be retained in office?

Yes

No

Shall Judge Edward R. Ardini, Jr. of the Court of Appeals – Western District be retained in office?

Yes

No

Amendments

Constitutional Amendment No. 1

Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to: -change process and criteria for redrawing state legislative districts during reapportionment; -change limits on campaign contributions that candidates for state legislature can accept from individuals or entities; -establish a limit on gifts that state legislators, and their employees, can accept from paid lobbyists; -prohibit state legislators, and their employees, from serving as paid lobbyists for a period of time; -prohibit political fundraising by candidates for or members of the state legislature on State property; and -require legislative records and proceedings to be open to the public? State governmental entities estimate annual operating costs may increase by $189,000. Local governmental entities expect no fiscal impact.

Yes

No

Constitutional Amendment No. 2

Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to: -allow the use of marijuana for medical purposes, and create regulations and licensing/certification procedures for marijuana and marijuana facilities; -impose a 4 percent tax on the retail sale of marijuana; and -use funds from these taxes for health and care services for military veterans by the Missouri Veterans Commission and to administer the program to license/certify and regulate marijuana and marijuana facilities? This proposal is estimated to generate annual taxes and fees of $18 million for state operating costs and veterans’ programs, and $6 million for local governments. Annual state operating costs are estimated to be $7 million.

Yes

No

Constitutional Amendment No. 3

Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to: -allow the use of marijuana for medical purposes, and create regulations and licensing procedures for marijuana and marijuana facilities; -impose a 15 percent tax on the retail sale of marijuana, and a tax on the wholesale sale of marijuana flowers and leaves per dry-weight ounce to licensed facilities; and -use funds from these taxes to establish and fund a state research institute to conduct research with the purpose of developing cures and treatments for cancer and other incurable diseases or medical conditions? This proposal is estimated to generate annual taxes and fees of $66 million. State governmental entities estimate initial implementation costs of $186,000 and increased annual operating costs of $500,000.

Yes

No

Propositions

Proposition B

Do you want to amend Missouri law to: -increase the state minimum wage to $8.60 per hour with 85 cents per hour increase each year until 2023, when the state minimum wage would be $12.00 per hour; -exempt government employers from the above increase; and -increase the penalty for paying employees less than the minimum wage? State and local government estimate no direct costs or savings from the proposal, but operating costs could increase by an unknown annual amount that could be significant. State and local government tax revenue could change by an unknown annual amount ranging from a $2.9 million decrease to a $214 million increase depending on business decisions.

Yes

No

Proposition C

Do you want to amend Missouri law to: -remove state prohibitions on personal use and possession of medical cannabis (marijuana) with a written certification by a physician who treats a patient diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition; -remove state prohibitions on growth, possession, production, and sale of medical marijuana by licensed and regulated facilities, and a facility’s licensed owners and employees; -impose a 2% tax on the retail sale of medical marijuana; and -use funds from this tax for veterans’ services, drug treatment, early childhood education, and for public safety in cities with a medical marijuana facility? State government entities estimate initial and one-time costs of $2.6 million, annual costs of $10 million, and annual revenues of at least $10 million. Local government entities estimate no annual costs and are expected to have at least $152,000 in annual revenues.

Yes

No

Proposition D

Shall Missouri law be amended to fund Missouri state law enforcement by increasing the motor fuel tax by two and one half cents per gallon annually for four years beginning July 1, 2019, exempt Special Olympic, Paralympic, and Olympic prizes from state taxes, and to establish the Emergency State Freight Bottleneck Fund? If passed, this measure will generate at least $288 million annually to the State Road Fund to provide for the funding of Missouri state law enforcement and $123 million annually to local governments for road construction and maintenance.

Yes

No

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What’s on the Ballot: 2018 Midterm Election Preview