CategoryState

A look at Missouri’s upcoming state legislative primaries and beyond

Thirty-five of the 132 Missouri state legislators who filed for re-election—13 Democrats and 22 Republicans—will face challengers in the upcoming Aug. 2 primaries, the largest number since at least 2014.

More incumbent Missouri legislators are facing challengers in the upcoming Aug. 2 primaries than at any point since at least 2014. 

Thirty-five incumbents running for re-election—13 Democrats and 22 Republicans—are in contested primaries, representing 27% of the 132 legislators who filed for re-election. The remaining 73% of the incumbents are unopposed in their primaries and will advance to the general election.

A primary is contested when there are more candidates running than nominations available, meaning at least one candidate must lose. Historically, however, incumbents tend to win contested primaries in Missouri.

From 2014 to 2020, six state legislative incumbents—four Democrats and two Republicans—lost to primary challengers in Missouri out of the 79 who faced contested primaries during that time. Roughly 92% of all incumbents ultimately advanced to the general election in these contests.

There will be at least one incumbent defeated this year. Two Democratic incumbents—Reps. Mike Person and Raychel Proudie—were drawn into the same St. Louis-area district during redistricting. Only one can advance to the general election.

The total number of contested primaries—including those without incumbents—is also up this year, though lower than in 2018, the peak over the past five election cycles.

There are 69 contested primaries: 15 for Democrats and 54 for Republicans. For Democrats, this is down from 22 in 2020, a 32% decrease. For Republicans, the number increased by 29% from 42 in 2020 to 54 this year.

Looking beyond the primaries, general elections will see less major party competition this year than in recent cycles.

Major party competition refers to legislative districts where both Democratic and Republican candidates are present, meaning voters have a choice between the two parties.

When one major party is absent, a district is all but guaranteed to the other major party. For example, if no Democrats file for a district, it is likely that district will go to Republicans.

This year, 57% of districts are guaranteed to one of the two major parties: 29 (16%) to Democrats and 73 (41%) to Republicans. The remaining 78 districts (43%) currently feature candidates from both major parties.

The amount of major party competition has been decreasing since its high point in 2018 when 74% of districts featured candidates from both major parties. This was largely due to an increase in Democratic candidacies.

The figures for 2022 more closely resemble those from other previous election cycles.

All 163 districts in the House of Representatives are up for election this year, where Republicans currently hold a 107-48 majority with eight vacancies. 

Seventeen of the 34 Senate districts are also up for election. Republicans hold a 24-10 majority in that chamber.

Additional reading:



The top fundraisers among Indiana statewide elected offices

Campaign finance requirements govern how much money candidates may receive from individuals and organizations, how often they must report those contributions, and how much individuals, organizations, and political entities may contribute to campaigns.

While campaign finance is not the only factor in electoral outcomes, successful fundraising can provide a candidate with advantages during a campaign. Fundraising can also indicate party momentum.

This article lists top fundraisers among Indiana statewide officeholders and candidates, overall and by party. It is based on campaign finance reports that officeholders in and candidates for statewide elected offices submitted to the Indiana Secretary of State. It includes activity between Jan. 1, 2022, and June 30, 2022.

Statewide political positions are typically offices in the executive and judicial branches of government rather than the legislative, and they most often represent all citizens in the state, rather than those in a particular district.

Top Indiana statewide fundraisers by party

The top fundraisers among Indiana statewide officeholders and candidates are shown below. Individuals are presented with the office that they are on the ballot for in 2022, if applicable. If no office is indicated, the person was an incumbent and was not on the ballot in 2022.

In the Democratic Party, the only statewide candidate included in the most recent semiannual reporting period was:

  • Destiny Scott Wells (Secretary of State) – $118,333

In the Republican Party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:

  • Suzanne Crouch – $881,672
  • Todd Rokita – $395,125
  • Eric Holcomb – $341,571
  • Holli Sullivan (Secretary of State) – $146,784
  • Tera Klutz (Auditor of State) – $90,532

Fundraising totals

Overall, Democratic officeholders and candidates raised $118,333 in this period. Republican officeholders and candidates raised $2.2 million. Combined, all statewide officeholders and candidates in the Jan. 1, 2022, through June 30, 2022, filing period raised $2.3 million.

These were the only Democratic statewide executive fundraisers during this reporting period. The five largest Republican fundraisers were responsible for 86 percent of all Republican statewide officeholder and candidate fundraising.

The table below provides additional data from the campaign finance reports from the top 10 fundraisers during this period.

TOP 10 FUNDRAISERS – Indiana STATEWIDE OFFICEHOLDERS AND CANDIDATES (Jan. 1, 2022, through June 30, 2022)
Name Party Affiliation Office Sought Raised Spent
Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch Republican Party Not on the 2022 ballot $881,672 $59,756
Attorney General Todd Rokita Republican Party Not on the 2022 ballot $395,125 $352,513
Governor Eric Holcomb Republican Party Not on the 2022 ballot $341,571 $424,750
Secretary of State Holli Sullivan Republican Party Secretary of State $146,784 $336,164
Destiny Scott Wells Democratic Party Secretary of State $118,333 $63,976
Auditor Tera Klutz Republican Party Auditor of State $90,532 $39,196
Diego Morales Republican Party Secretary of State $73,300 $216,564
Pete Seat Republican Party Treasurer $53,031 $70,828
David Shelton Republican Party Secretary of State $33,389 $33,389
Elise Nieshalla Republican Party Treasurer $33,336 $142,333

Campaign finance reporting periods

The data above are based on campaign finance reports that candidate PACs submitted to the Indiana Secretary of State. Candidate PACs represent individuals who have run for state or local office at any point, including past and present officeholders. This article does not include non-candidate PACs. Transparency USA publishes campaign finance data following major reporting deadlines. State or federal law may require filers to submit additional reports.

Report Name Report Due Date
2022 Jan Semiannual 1/19/2022
2022 Statewide Quarterly/Semiannual 7/15/2022
2022 Pre-Election 10/17/2022
2022 Statewide Quarterly 11/1/2022
2022 Annual Report 1/18/2023

This article is a joint publication from Ballotpedia and Transparency USA, who are working together to provide campaign finance information for state-level elections. Learn more about our work here.



The top fundraisers in the Indiana House

Campaign finance requirements govern how much money candidates may receive from individuals and organizations, how often they must report those contributions, and how much individuals, organizations, and political entities may contribute to campaigns.

While campaign finance is not the only factor in electoral outcomes, successful fundraising can provide a candidate with advantages during a campaign. Fundraising can also indicate party momentum.

This article lists top fundraisers in the Indiana House of Representatives, overall and by party. It is based on campaign finance reports that officeholders in and candidates for the House submitted to the Indiana Secretary of State. It includes activity between Jan. 1, 2022, and June 30, 2022.

Top fundraisers in the Indiana House of Representatives by party

The top fundraisers in Indiana House of Representatives elections are shown below. Individuals are presented with the office that they are on the ballot for in 2022, if applicable.

In the Democratic Party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:

  • Mike Andrade (District 12) – $25,224
  • Katherine Rybak (District 76) – $16,768
  • Penny Githens (District 62) – $14,109
  • Kyle Miller (District 82) – $12,647
  • Chris Campbell (District 26) – $12,049

In the Republican Party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:

  • Julie McGuire (District 93) – $572,948
  • Todd Huston (District 37) – $368,800
  • Craig Snow (District 22) – $325,206
  • Daniel Leonard (District 50) – $313,405
  • Martin Carbaugh (District 81) – $273,129

Fundraising totals

Overall, Democratic officeholders and candidates raised $159,105 in this period. Republican officeholders and candidates raised $4.5 million. Combined, all House fundraisers in the Jan. 1, 2022, through June 30, 2022, filing period raised $4.6 million.

The five largest Democratic fundraisers were responsible for 51 percent of all Democratic House fundraising. The five largest Republican fundraisers were responsible for 41 percent of all Republican House fundraising.

The table below provides additional data from the campaign finance reports from the top 10 fundraisers during this period.

TOP 10 FUNDRAISERS – INDIANA HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES (Jan. 1, 2022, through June 30, 2022)
Name Party Affiliation Raised Spent
Julie McGuire Republican Party $572,948 $517,858
Todd Huston Republican Party $368,800 $507,704
Craig Snow Republican Party $325,206 $181,333
Daniel Leonard Republican Party $313,405 $210,468
Martin Carbaugh Republican Party $273,129 $177,626
Matthew Whetstone Republican Party $185,551 $77,880
Robert Behning Republican Party $142,143 $91,757
Craig Haggard Republican Party $122,644 $93,005
Edward Clere Republican Party $104,300 $29,515
Shane Weist Republican Party $100,790 $31,770

Campaign finance reporting periods

The data above are based on campaign finance reports that candidate PACs submitted to the Indiana Secretary of State. Candidate PACs represent individuals who have run for state or local office at any point, including past and present officeholders. This article does not include non-candidate PACs. Transparency USA publishes campaign finance data following major reporting deadlines. State or federal law may require filers to submit additional reports.

Report Name Report Due Date
2022 Jan Semiannual 1/19/2022
2022 Statewide Quarterly/Semiannual 7/15/2022
2022 Pre-Election 10/17/2022
2022 Statewide Quarterly 11/1/2022
2022 Annual Report 1/18/2023

This article is a joint publication from Ballotpedia and Transparency USA, who are working together to provide campaign finance information for state-level elections. Learn more about our work here.



The top fundraisers in the Indiana State Senate

Campaign finance requirements govern how much money candidates may receive from individuals and organizations, how often they must report those contributions, and how much individuals, organizations, and political entities may contribute to campaigns.

While campaign finance is not the only factor in electoral outcomes, successful fundraising can provide a candidate with advantages during a campaign. Fundraising can also indicate party momentum.

This article lists top fundraisers in the Indiana State Senate, overall and by party. It is based on campaign finance reports that officeholders in and candidates for the State Senate submitted to the Indiana Secretary of State. It includes activity between Jan. 1, 2022, and June 30, 2022.

Top fundraisers in the Indiana State Senate by party

The top fundraisers in Indiana State Senate elections are shown below. Individuals are presented with the office that they are on the ballot for in 2022, if applicable.

In the Democratic Party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:

  • Todd Connor (District 4) – $177,328
  • Rodney Pol Jr. (District 4) – $58,360
  • Andrea Hunley (District 46) – $45,584
  • Kristin Jones (District 46) – $41,958
  • Ronald Itnyre (District 27) – $32,265

In the Republican Party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:

  • Ron Turpin (District 14) – $303,424
  • Mike Gaskill (District 25) – $155,728
  • Kevin Boehnlein (District 47) – $97,942
  • Spencer Deery (District 23) – $86,820
  • Alexander Choi (District 29) – $62,475

Fundraising totals

Overall, Democratic officeholders and candidates raised $470,978 in this period. Republican officeholders and candidates raised $984,792. Combined, all State Senate fundraisers in the Jan. 1, 2022, through June 30, 2022, filing period raised $1.5 million.

The five largest Democratic fundraisers were responsible for 75 percent of all Democratic State Senate fundraising. The five largest Republican fundraisers were responsible for 72 percent of all Republican State Senate fundraising.

The table below provides additional data from the campaign finance reports from the top 10 fundraisers during this period.

TOP 10 FUNDRAISERS – INDIANA STATE SENATE (Jan. 1, 2022, through June 30, 2022)
Name Party Affiliation Raised Spent
Ron Turpin Republican Party $303,424 $248,215
Todd Connor Democratic Party $177,328 $197,022
Mike Gaskill Republican Party $155,728 $106,153
Kevin Boehnlein Republican Party $97,942 $152,371
Spencer Deery Republican Party $86,820 $50,663
Alexander Choi Republican Party $62,475 $20,820
Rodney Pol Jr. Democratic Party $58,360 $25,458
Kyle Walker Republican Party $46,923 $9,074
Andrea Hunley Democratic Party $45,584 $29,153
Kristin Jones Democratic Party $41,958 $48,301

Campaign finance reporting periods

The data above are based on campaign finance reports that candidate PACs submitted to the Indiana Secretary of State. Candidate PACs represent individuals who have run for state or local office at any point, including past and present officeholders. This article does not include non-candidate PACs. Transparency USA publishes campaign finance data following major reporting deadlines. State or federal law may require filers to submit additional reports.

Report Name Report Due Date
2022 Jan Semiannual 1/19/2022
2022 Statewide Quarterly/Semiannual 7/15/2022
2022 Pre-Election 10/17/2022
2022 Statewide Quarterly 11/1/2022
2022 Annual Report 1/18/2023

This article is a joint publication from Ballotpedia and Transparency USA, who are working together to provide campaign finance information for state-level elections. Learn more about our work here.



California ballot initiative to repeal PAGA qualifies for 2024 ballot

On July 22, the secretary of state reported that a ballot initiative to repeal the Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) had qualified for the 2024 ballot after missing the signature verification deadline for the 2022 ballot.

In California, the number of signatures required for an initiated state statute is equal to 5% of the votes cast in the last gubernatorial election. Signatures need to be verified at least 131 days before the election. The deadline for the November ballot was June 30.

The campaign announced on May 12 that it would target the 2024 ballot after missing the April 30 signature submission deadline. On June 9, the campaign filed signatures. The final random count of signatures concluded that 700,008 signatures of the 962,224 submitted were valid. 

The initiative proposes repealing PAGA, which allows employees to sue employers and collect a share of monetary penalties for state labor law violations, and replacing it with a new law that would:

  • require the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) to be a party to all labor complaints;
  • double statutory and civil penalties for willful violators;
  • require that 100% of monetary penalties be awarded to harmed employees; and
  • provide resources to employers to ensure labor compliance.

According to the California Legislative Analyst’s Office, approximately 5,000 PAGA notices are filed annually. Any penalties won under PAGA must be split between the employees (25%) and the state of California (75%). 

During the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2021-2022 term, the court partially struck down PAGA in Viking River Cruises, Inc. v. Moriana by prohibiting workers to join together to sue their employer because it violated an employer’s right to arbitration under federal law.

The initiative has received endorsements from the California Chamber of Commerce, Western Growers Association, California New Car Dealers Association, and the California Restaurant Association.

The California Chamber of Commerce said, “The California Fair Pay and Employer Accountability Act is an opportunity to reform labor law enforcement to prevent frivolous litigation while ensuring that workers receive the wages they are owed in a timely manner, plus any penalties.”

Two other ballot initiatives have also qualified for the 2024 ballot. The first would create a state Pandemic Early Detection and Prevention Institute, and the second would increase the state’s minimum wage to $18 by 2026. All three ballot initiatives originally targeted the 2022 ballot before qualifying for 2024.

Additional reading:

California 2024 ballot propositions



Seven candidates running in Democratic primary for governor of Hawaii

Seven candidates are running in the Democratic primary for governor of Hawaii on Aug. 13. Incumbent David Ige (D) is term-limited.

Vicky Cayetano, Joshua Green, and Kaiali’i Kahele lead in polling and media attention.

Cayetano co-founded Hawaii’s largest laundry company and served as president and CEO for 34 years. Cayetano said, “My record of building a business of a thousand employees and supporting our community is one of action and results.” She said, “I have a vision, I make payroll, know how to be a CEO. Government should be run like business. We keep talking about the same issues, and we need a new perspective. It’s time for a new perspective to solve the problems.” In 1997, Cayetano married Hawaii Gov. Ben Cayetano (D), who served as governor until 2002.

Green is Hawaii’s current lieutenant governor and an emergency room physician. He said, “I’m running for Governor because Hawaii needs elected leaders we can trust — to tell us the truth, keep us safe and informed, to care about working families, and to be transparent and accountable to the people.” Green highlighted his role serving as COVID liaison while lieutenant governor. A campaign ad said, “Hawaii got through COVID with the lowest infection rate in the nation.”

Kahele, a veteran and lieutenant colonel in the Hawaii Air National Guard, was elected to represent Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2020. Kahele said, “Congress established our great state in 1959 on the condition that the State of Hawaiʻi would establish and manage the ceded Public Land Trust for the benefit of Native Hawaiians and the general public. Ensuring that the state restores its kuleana to manage this public trust is a foundation of my platform for governor.” Kahele says he is “running for governor on a grassroots, publicly funded campaign[.]” He said, “While other candidates are taking corporate money and checks of up to $6,000, I will not accept donations from any individual of more than a hundred bucks.”

Affordable housing has been a central theme in the race. Cayetano’s campaign website said, “[I]n addition to accelerating housing projects that are specific to Native Hawaiians and are taking place within the Department of Hawaiian Homelands (DHHL), I would make the availability of affordable rental housing my highest priority. I propose a massive five year recurring statewide affordable rental housing plan to significantly increase the number of affordable rental housing units for Hawaii’s families.” 

As part of Green’s 10-point housing plan, he said that he would “[i]mmediately issue an executive order to all state and county housing agencies to speed up construction of affordable housing by eliminating red tape, streamlining processes and approvals, and coordinating efforts to address the crisis.” 

Kahele said he would “[build] targeted workforce housing; [develop] fee mechanisms through tax-exempt bonds and bond activity caps; and [build] out housing plans specific to urban Honolulu and the rest of the state.”

Cayetano, Green, and Kahele disagree on the proposed Thirty Meter Telescope project, a plan to construct a $2.65 billion telescope on the summit of the Mauna Kea volcano. Cayetano supports the project, Kahele opposes the plans as they stand, and Green expressed disappointment in the handling of the project, saying he supported large projects like the telescope if they were done with respect between cultures.

According to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser‘s Dan Nakaso, the candidates also disagree on the legalization of recreational marijuana. Nakaso wrote, “Kahele and Green support legalizing recreational marijuana, with caveats, while Cayetano is opposed.”

Major independent observers rate the general election as solid Democratic or safe Democratic. Ige was first elected in 2014 and won re-election in 2018 by a margin of 29 percentage points. Democrats have had trifecta control of Hawaii state government since 2011.

Also running in the primary are David “Duke” Bourgoin, Richard Kim, Clyde Lewman, and Van Tanabe.



Four candidates running in Democratic gubernatorial primary in Florida

Charlie Crist, Cadance Daniel, Nikki Fried, and Robert Willis are running in the Democratic primary election for Governor of Florida on August 23, 2022. Crist and Fried have received the most media attention and endorsements.

Crist was elected to the U.S. House in 2016. He served as governor from 2007 to 2011, attorney general from 2003 to 2007, state education commissioner from 2001 to 2003, and in the state senate from 1992 to 1998. Crist was elected to state office as a Republican before becoming an independent in 2010 and a Democrat in 2012. Crist has campaigned on five steps he says would make it easier to vote in the state, including reversing 2021 changes to the state’s mail ballot policies, providing clean water, and easing transitions for out-of-state transplants. Three members of Florida’s U.S. House delegation, 22 members of the state legislature, the Florida Education Association, and the Florida AFL-CIO endorsed Crist.

Fried was elected as agriculture commissioner in 2018. Fried is the only Democrat to hold statewide elected office in Florida. Prior to holding elected office, she worked as a public defender, attorney in private practice, and government affairs advocate for the marijuana industry. Fried has campaigned on reducing housing costs, lowering the price of homeowner’s insurance, a $15 minimum wage, and creating a small business growth fund as key issues. Four members of the state legislature and the Democratic Black Caucus of Florida endorsed Fried.

Crist’s campaign has focused on restoring civility, ending divisive politics, and working across the political aisle. CNN’s Steve Contorno compared his campaign strategy to that of President Joe Biden (D) in 2020. Fried’s campaign has focused on the idea of electing a new face in Florida politics and has cited Crist’s loss in 2014 to then-Gov. Rick Scott (R) and Biden’s three-point 2020 loss in the state as reasons voters should nominate her.

Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) is running for re-election. Republicans currently hold both a trifecta and a triplex in the state, meaning they hold majorities in both chambers of the state legislature along with the positions of governor, attorney general, and secretary of state. Florida is one of 20 states to have both a Republican trifecta and a Republican triplex.



Missouri’s average gas price falls to $4.18

As of July 20, Missouri’s average gas price according to AAA was $4.18 for regular gas, which was below the national average of $4.47. Gas prices fell from the previous week’s average of $4.37 and were below the June average of $4.66. On July 20, 2021, the state’s average price was $2.84.

Joplin was the metro area in the state with the lowest average price at $3.96. Jefferson City was the metro area in the state with the highest average price at $4.38.

Missouri has a gas tax of $0.1742 cents per gallon, making it the fourth-lowest in the United States. The lowest is Alaska ($0.0895) and the highest is Pennsylvania ($0.586). The average across the country is $0.2885.

The price of gasoline is affected by several factors. Gas prices are primarily driven by crude oil prices, which are in turn affected by supply and demand, financial markets, international politics, environmental regulation, taxes, weather, and other factors. When the supply of oil increases due to increased production, the price will likely decrease. When demand increases—either from individual consumers or oil-dependent industries—the price will likely increase. Production may increase or decrease depending on advances in technology, changes in industry regulation, policy changes, political forces, and more.



Missouri celebrates the 202nd anniversary of their first constitution

202 years ago, the first constitution of Missouri was signed on July 19, 1820. 

At the time that the constitution was signed, Missouri had not yet gained statehood. The territory first applied in 1817, but was unable to obtain statehood due to the debate in Congress over slavery. In 1820, Maine applied for statehood with the intention of outlawing slavery. Congress passed the Missouri Compromise in March 1820 that would allowed both Maine and Missouri to gain statehood. 

On June 12, 1820, Missouri held its first constitutional convention in St. Louis at the Mansion House Hotel. The convention of 40 men met over 38 days. The preamble read, “We, the people of Missouri, inhabiting the limits hereinafter designated, by our representatives in convention assembled, at St. Louis, on Monday the 12th day of June, 1820, do mutually agree to form and establish a free and independent republic, by the name of ‘the State of Missouri;’ and for the government thereof, do ordain and establish this constitution.”

The constitution was ratified on July 19, 1820, and Missouri was the 24th state admitted to the Union on Aug. 10, 1821. 

Throughout the last two centuries, Missouri has adopted three more constitutions. The second constitution was ratified in 1865 following the end of the Civil War. The third was adopted ten years later in 1875 during the Reconstruction Era. The fourth version was ratified in 1945. The fourth constitution is the current constitution. It has been amended 119 times as of June 2022. Every 20 years, Missourian voters have the option to pass a referendum calling a constitutional convention. The referendum will be on the ballot this November.



Gov. Parson granted the fewest pardons in 2022 in June

In June, Gov. Michael Parson (R) granted nine pardons. June had the fewest pardons this year. Parson granted the highest number of pardons in February with 29 pardons. In 2022, 97 pardons have been issued in Missouri and four sentences have been commuted. 

The nine individuals pardoned were James Griggs, Kenneth Moss, Donald Craft Jr., Brent Sisk, Dustin Barnes, Burke Stephens, Rita Miller, Scott Carver, and Patricia Putnam. 

In Missouri, the governor is given the power of pardons, commutations, and reprieves through the Constitution. There are two types of pardons, full and partial, resulting in four different types of clemency the governor may grant. A full pardon restores all citizenship rights and removes collateral consequences but does not remove the conviction from the record of the individual. A partial pardon removes certain collateral consequences depending on the individual’s circumstances. A commutation can either end the individual’s sentence or reduce it. A reprieve is a stay of execution.

In order for a confined individual to apply for clemency, he or she must either claim innocence, have served 25 or more years, or be 70 or older and have served 12 or more years. Additionally, the individual must have exhausted all other judicial routes. An individual with a conviction of treason cannot receive clemency.