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Partisan Candidates Selected For April 2nd General Election

March 8, 2013 Board of Aldermen, Featured, Politics/Policy 36 Comments

On Tuesday each party selected their candidates to face  each other in the general election.  Apparently we have so many candidates seeking office in St. Louis we must first hold a partisan primary to narrow the field and then a general election where the candidate from each party faces the other and all the independents.

ivotedLet’s take a look at all 17 races to see how who was selected to represent each party in the April 2nd primary:

  • Mayor: James Eldon McNeely (G) received 115 votes, defeating nobody in the primary, will face incumbent Francis Slay (D). In the 3-way primary Slay had a 10 point victory over President of the Board of Aldermen Lewis Reed and Jimmie Mathews barely registered with 1.31% of the vote. No independent or Republican candidates filed. Unless something major happens, Slay will win an unprecedented fourth 4-year term. Reed’s current seat is up again in two years.
  • Comptroller: Jerome Bauer (G)received 108 votes, defeating nobody in the primary, will face Darlene Green (D) who also defeated nobody in the primary. No independent or Republican candidates filed.
  • 1st Ward: None of the three candidates in the Democratic primary received greater than 50% of the 1,676 votes. No independent, Green, or Republican candidates filed. Former alderman Sharon Tyrus will be returning to city hall having received 800 votes. Incumbent Charles Troupe came in second with 570. Yolanda Brown got 306 votes.  Read how Tyus got redistricted out of office here.
  • 3rd Ward: After the 4-way primary race  incumbent Freeman Bosley Sr. (D) will return to city hall, no independent, Green, or Republican candidates filed. Only 1,483 voted in this race with Bosley receiving 799, Anthony Bell (264), Jeffrey Hardin (261), and Maxine Johnson (159). Bosley has held this seat since April 1989.
  • 5th Ward: By far the biggest disappointment of the primary was Tammika Hubbard (D) winning a full term in office, defeating Michelle Hutchings-Medina (713 to 573). No wonder given the family tactics. No independent, Green, or Republican candidates filed.
  • 7th Ward: David Brent Gordon (G) received 1 vote, defeating nobody in his primary, will face Phyllis Young (D) , who defeated nobody in the primary with 1,172 votes. Young is seeking her eighth term, yes eighth. Those 7th ward folks love the status quo! No independent  or Republican candidates filed.
  • 9th Ward: Susie Mayberry Parker (G) received 8 votes, defeating nobody in the primary, faces Ken A. Ortmann (D), who also defeated nobody in his primary with 1,015 votes. No independent  or Republican candidates filed.
  • 11th Ward: Thomas Albert Villa (D) received 1,182 votes, defeating nobody in the primary and faces nobody in the general. No independent or Republican candidates filed.
  • 13th Ward: Fred Wessels (D) received 1,456 votes, defeating nobody in the primary and faces nobody in the general. Like Young, Wessels is seeking an eighth term. No independent or Republican candidates filed.
  • 15th Ward: Incumbent Jennifer Florida (D) defeated Lisa Miller (996-607) in the primary. No independent, Green, or Republican candidates filed.
  • 17th Ward: Joseph (Joe) Roddy (D) received 1,008 votes, defeating nobody in the primary and faces nobody in the general. No independent, Green, or Republican candidates filed.
  • 19th Ward: Marlene E. Davis (D) received 955 votes, defeating nobody in the primary and faces nobody in the general. No independent candidates filed.
  • 21st Ward: Antonio D. French (D) defeated primary challenger Kenneth D. Wilson (1,527-378), faces nobody in the general. No independent, Green, or Republican candidates filed.
  • 23rd Ward: Robert J. Crump (R) received 24 votes, defeating nobody in the primary, faces Joseph (Joe) Vaccaro Jr.(D), who also defeated nobody in the primary 2,418 votes. No independent or Green candidates filed.
  • 25th Ward: Shane Cohn (D) received 830 votes, defeating nobody in his primary and faces nobody in the general. No independent, Green, or Republican candidates filed.
  • 27th Ward: Incumbent Chris Carter (D) defeated Pamela Boyd (1,278-446).  No independent, Green, or Republican candidates filed so Carter will get a full term.
  • 6th Ward (special election): Eugene Frison, Jr. (G), who defeated nobody in the primary, will face Christine Ingrassia (D), who received just over half the votes in the primary (1,043 to Jones’ 541 and Witthaus’ 477).  No independent or Republican candidates filed.

It makes zero financial sense to hold a partisan primary and a general election a month later! Decades ago when we had more people, and more candidates, it made some sense. We need to go to nonpartisan elections and to instant-runoff voting, doing so will level the playing field and get more people involved. Of course the incumbents don’t want to do either.

Six candidates have filed for three seats on the school board and a tax issue will be on the April 2nd ballot, will post about these before the election.

— Steve Patterson


Currently there are "36 comments" on this Article:

  1. JZ71 says:

    Agree competely!

  2. Erik Bates says:

    7th Ward: David Brent Gordon (G) received 1 vote.

    According to Facebook (I’m assuming that the David Brent Gordon from Saint Louis on Facebook is the same David Brent Gordon who ran for alderman for the 7th ward), Mr. Gordon is in a civil union.

    Sad commentary for his campaign that he couldn’t even get his partner/spouse/significant other to vote for him.

    I am assuming, of course, that the single vote he received was the vote he cast for himself.

    • Since you brought it up I looked at ha Facebook profile, his “about” section says he likes women and his partner is listed as “God”. I don’t think any deities are registered to vote in St. Louis.

    • David Brent Gordon is a Tea Party Republican businessman running on the Green Party ticket but recently has been introducing himself as the Libertarian Party candidate. His roofing company is not eco-friendly. Phyllis and Jim Young are far more Green- solar water heater and electric car owners, co-op garden founders, Sierra Club active.- Marie Ceselski, 7th Ward Democratic Committeewoman

  3. RyleyinSTL says:

    I have never been able to understand why there is partisan politics at the municipal level in the USA. Very strange indeed. What possible benefit is there for the candidates? It’s not as if they are strictly following National or State Committee dogma. In my opinion local issues are to complex and unique to be confined in that matter. I’d go so far as to say that partisan politics are a huge reason that political reform has basically been non-existent at city hall (save perhaps some very recant changes).

  4. guest says:

    St. Louis is a Democrat city, bringing big names on the national scene, including former 14th ward alderman Dick Gephardt and Claire McCaskill (yes, St. Louis County, but still a democrat from our region, strongly supporting STL City). You might not like partisan elections at the municipal level, but I like being strongly identified as part of the “Blue” (Democrat party) base, especially when compared to other parts of the state/region.

    • If St. Louis went nonpartisan for local offices we’d still be viewed as a deep blue city based on our voting patterns for state & national offices.

    • samizdat says:

      Both parties are utterly corrupt, at the very least, at the national level.

    • You would still be able to identify yourself as a Democrat, and support those that share your ideals.

      But instead of just relying on the parenthetical letter behind a name to cast their vote, citizens would actually have to participate in the process in order to learn which candidate shares his values and goals for the city.

  5. guest says:

    What about Mike Chance? Or Fred Heitert? Or Ed Martin? or Carol Wilson? Or Gary Stoff?

    • Chance hasn’t run for years, Heitert lost to a democrat a couple of years ago, Martin prefers to lose big races rather than lose small local races, and Stoff is at the election board.

  6. GMichaud says:

    Great idea, consolidate the elections, you’re right, although it is a sad statement for our democracy. I found the little bit of debate there was this election season seemed confined to a few areas of discussion and almost none directed at how to physically rebuild the city.

    To me the core problem for the region is how to integrate transit with the environment and eliminate the need for automobiles. But I guess since there is global warming and oil and energy shortages that idea is a bit too radical to discuss, Hey?

    The recent proposal to run a streetcar line from downtown St. Louis is part of the joke. The real question is how to rebuild a comprehensive transit system that makes automobiles unnecessary, not offer weak solutions so that when they don’t work everyone says I told you so.

    The piecemeal approach of the streetcar proposal outlines the disease of politics that is St. Louis.

    The whole media/political system is set up so we cannot have competitive elections nor real debate. That is the problem.

    • JZ71 says:

      Have to agree. Instead of trying to figure out how to tweak our current transit system to meet our needs better, to make it more attractive than driving, we instead have different groups independently chasing different “new” proposals aimed at narrowly-focused corridors. Rail advocates fail to realize / accept the fact that it’s not the technology that matters, it’s the trip itself. Most of us drive because it’s quick, convenient and not too expensive. Our transit system does a fair job of addressing the cost part of the equation, but does little to address the quick and convenient part, especially outside of downtown. A streetcar may be more “attractive” (and a bit less “scary”) than a bus, but if it still means mastering a schedule and waiting for transfers, it’s not going to function any better than a bus does for daily use. The same goes for our politics. Until we move beyond “all politics is [hyper] local” and start to look at regional solutions, we’ll be stuck with developers playing county governments against each other for TIF’s and race playing too big a role in city issues.

      • I strongly disagree, the technology is critically important. If you were to ask people in a photo survey of options and you showed a bus vs a modern streetcar most, if not all, would pick the streetcar. It’s sexy, it appeals to our desires to not drive everywhere.

        • moe says:

          It’s sexy is no reason to spend hundreds of millions. If we can’t change the minds with what we have, shiny baubbles is not going to do it.

    • Our fragmentation means nobody has to deal with the big picture. Metro is the most regional but they can only do so much — they don’t control land use in the many political jurisdictions they serve. Our government organization isn’t designed to succeed.

  7. samizdat says:

    Non-partisan and run-off, for all elections, local, state, and national. This bidness of basically forcing groups and individuals to buy their way onto a ballot is not exactly democratic.

  8. Any serious attempt to change St. Louis elections to nonpartisan would be perceived as an attempt to dilute minority voting power. The GOP is working on changing county elections in the South to nonpartisan in an attempt to suppress the minority vote.

    Generally, across the country, the issue of partisan or nonpartisan local elections is decided by state legislature not local voters.

    9 of 14 U.S. Cities with a population of 270,000 – 330,000 have Manager-Council governments with nonpartisan municipal elections. Incumbents are favored and turnout is low, just like in partisan local elections.

    If your goal is increased voter turnout, the best thing would be to move municipal elections to the same dates as state-county elections, which would also reduce the local costs for running elections. We’ve been talking about this in our ward organization. It would require action by the Lege. This year’s primary weather is a strong motivator for wanting to swap the primary month from March to August. Until it cleared out early afternoon, our ward was at about a 5% turnout.

    If your goal is to see more Republican candidates on local ballots, the GOP has to quit be so sucky.

    It’s not the fault of a partisan election structure that people who owe city taxes get thrown off the ballot. It’s not the fault of a partisan election structure that people who do not meet the residency or voter registration requirements get bumped off the ballot. -Marie Ceselski, 7th Ward Democratic Committeewoman

    • I’ve never seen nonpartisan elections discussed as a method of voter suppression. Very few would even know the difference. By eliminating the March primary we’d see better turnout in April

        • Read your own link again, no comparison to St. Louis. At issue is diluting minority democratic districts with republican districts. St. Louis has no republican districts. SW City is likely the most white & conservative but nobody from there is going to get elected alderman in a north city ward regardless if we have partisan or nonpartisan elections.

          • As a semi-professional political diversity training counselor to those who have lived sheltered lives, I was gently giving you a heads up about perception.

          • Translation: I need to do everything possible to protect the status quo, we’re already going to 14 wards from 28.

          • Apologies for trying to fool you. You are too smart for us. Me and the Black kid who came in third behind Penny Hubbard, and the independent ward organization for Liberal Democrats we founded this year, we’re all about the status quo. We are so status quo that we are having a school board candidates forum Monday and then we will vote on endorsements by paper ballot, all in a desperate attempt to try and lure people into thinking there is something new and exciting going on the 7th Ward. Next month, the deception continues with guest speakers on marijuana decriminalization and a letter writing party wherein we try to maintain the status quo by asking state and federal lawmakers to change laws.

          • Many municipal & county level offices have been nonpartisan for well over a century, it’s not something new. After Democrat Phylis Young finishes this next term she’ll have been in office for 32 years! We need to shake up the system so credible candidates would be willing to challenge incumbents.

          • and Daniel Inouye served 53 years in Congress, Teddy Kennedy 46 years, Barbara Mikulski and Joe Biden 36 years, John Lewis 26 years, our Illinois neighbor Paul Simon 22 years. Sue Shear served 26 years in the Missouri House. Your point is what? Why is longevity alone a bad thing?

          • Local office isn’t the same as the state legislature or congress. Those offices should remain partisan.

          • Our Board of Aldermen serves as our city and county legislature. The Board passes laws, votes on appointments by the executive office, adopts a budget, similar to State Lege and Congress.

          • Many local governments are nonpartisan while all state governments are partisan.

          • moe says:

            Longevity isn’t a bad thing at all. It boils down to how effective are they at serving those that put them into office? doesn’t matter what level it is. But I think the longer one is in office, the harder it is to prove they are still making a difference.

    • JZ71 says:

      Playing the race card is one big reason why the city continues to struggle. “Diluting minority voting power” in the city would mean reducing any power Caucasian voters may have, since it’s African-Americans who are in the majority in the city: http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/29/29510.html

      • branwell1 says:

        According to the 2010 US Census, the City has no racial majority for the first time in its history. In the 2000 census, blacks were 51.2% of the City’s population. With outmigration mostly from North St. Louis, that figure has dropped to below 50%. There are now slightly more blacks than whites, but that does not make blacks a majority overall. There is now a plurality, but not a majority.

        • JZ71 says:

          Semantics. Majority and plurality have specific, nuanced meanings only when it comes to elections. The bottom line is that more black folks than white folks live in the city (and Asians, Hispanics and Bosnians don’t have any designated “representatives”, even though they’re approaching 10% of our population). Elections and political power are “won” by getting out the vote(rs). If race is the biggest predictor of success or the best qualification a candidate may have, then African-Americans should have no problem controlling the city’s destiny.

          Personally, I could care less what race any candidate may be, I just want the best representative of my interests* serving in office, at any level of government. Focusing on race (or gender or sexual orientation or religion) detracts from a candidate’s other, more-important qualifications. Defining wards as “safe” ones for any race just perpetuates the underlying racism that permeates most political discussions in the city.

          *fiscal responsibility, ethics, open communication, sensitivity to land uses, support for transit and cycling, etc.

          • branwell1 says:

            >>Semantics. Majority and plurality have specific, nuanced meanings only when it comes to elections.<>The bottom line is that more black folks than white folks live in the city<>then African-Americans should have no problem controlling the city’s destiny.<<

            It has been established historically and even by landmark court cases that black populations do not vote commensurately with their numbers. That is not exclusively a local phenomenon. This is why when the 20th ward was moved to south St. Louis in 2000, it was redrawn as an "opportunity ward", i.e., to have a black population increased to 60-65%, the standard established in prior litigation, so that a potential black candidate would have a strong chance of winning, based on the standard racial calculus of municipal elections.

            I don't care what color a candidate is either, but I think the fact that there is no racial majority currently in the city is noteworthy and historic.

  9. Chuck Lee says:

    I am not the Charles Troupe who came in second. I didn’t come in at all. But if I had been elected I would refuse to serve. I have no interest in politics, although I don’t think I would mind being the dictator of a small, clothing-optional, Latin American country. What I prefer doing is making up wacky song lyrics, then performing them in front of large crowds while they throw fruit and vegetables at me … thus saving me several dollars on groceries. Examples of my craft can be googled by typing “Chuck Troupe sings.” If you like my song (and me singing it) I might be willing to be talked into coming to your city and running for public office. Or maybe running from public office. It would depend on the offer … which would have to include several free hamburgers with onion rings. I am posted as “Chuck Lee” on FaceBook because I am in the witness protection program … which, because of budget restraints, turned out to be the Jehovah’s Witnesses protection program. Disclaimer: Nothing I just said was meant to be taken seriously … except the music video on Google and the name thing.


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