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Crystal Quade thinks Missouri is ready for a Democratic governor

When House Minority Leader Crystal Quade first won election to her Springfield seat in 2016, her fellow Democrats suffered catastrophic losses for posts in the Legislature and statewide.

Now, after eight years of near-total Republican Party control of Missouri’s state government, Quade believes the state’s voters are ready to move on and put Democrats like her in the governor’s mansion. During a performance op The Political Speaking Hour on St. Louis on the Air, Quade claimed that Missourians are dissatisfied with the way Republicans have run the state.

“They are frustrated by the leadership vacuum happening in Jefferson City,” Quade said. “And one of the things I was able to prove in 2016, by becoming the only elected Democrat in the southern half of the state in an area that was red at the time, was because I listened to people and asked what they said. popular.”

Candidates like Quade, one of two who, along with Springfield businessman Mark Hamra, are the leading Democratic contenders to succeed Gov. Mike Parson, will only win in November if they win back rural and suburban parts of the state that Republicans have captured in recent years. have conquered for years. past decade. Since 2016, Democrats in Missouri have often received about 20% of the vote in dozens of rural counties — making it nearly impossible to win statewide.

Why Crystal Quade believes Missouri is ready for a Democratic governor again

Quade said Democrats are trying to dig themselves out of their electoral hole by moving into places where Republicans often dominate.

“Showing up in rural Missouri is step one,” Quade said. “And step two, of course, is listening and talking about the issues that matter to people.”

One of the main proposals Quade is putting forward is eliminating the state tax on groceries, something she said could be helpful for Missouri’s working class as it struggles with higher food prices.

Quade said her plan would include the creation of a fund to ensure municipalities do not miss out on crucial revenue. And it has raised taxes on things like foreign-owned yachts and farms as a way to ultimately make tax losses sustainable in the long run.

“Every day, Missourians struggle with the basics to make ends meet. And we have so many tax cuts in Missouri for the very wealthy,” Quade said. “And I know Missourians everywhere know this is unfair, and they are looking for leaders who are willing to look outside the box to give them a break.”

Reverend Dr.  Love Holt will kick off a rally to collect signatures for a Missouri constitutional amendment that would legalize abortion until fetal viability on Tuesday, February 6, 2024, at The Pageant in St. Louis' West End neighborhood.

Brian Munoz

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St. Louis Public Radio

Rev. Love Holt is launching a rally in February to collect signatures for a constitutional amendment in Missouri that would legalize abortion until the viability of the fetus.

Will voting on abortion rights change the general election?

Unlike her Republican Party opponents, Quade is a strong supporter of a measure that equates language in the Missouri Constitution legalizing abortion with what is known as fetal viability. That’s defined as when a medical professional decides that a fetus can survive outside the womb without extraordinary medical intervention.

Quade said the likelihood that the abortion amendment on the November ballot could be a boon for Democratic state House candidates — so much so that it could erode the Republican Party’s supermajority. But opponents of the amendment counter that the prospect of legal abortion could energize voters who oppose it.

While conceding that some voters may not be persuaded to vote for the abortion legalization measure, Quade said Missourians don’t like the current law banning the procedure except for medical emergencies.

“I really think for many Missourians this amounts to an attack on personal freedoms — and the government telling people what to do,” she said.

Another area where she differs from Republicans is her opposition to having a state board oversee the St. Louis Police Department. The leading Republican candidates, Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe, Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft and Sen. Bill Eigel, all support that idea, saying having the mayor’s office run the department hasn’t made the city safer.

Quade said removing local control of the department is disrespectful to city residents.

“The only thing I would add is that we know that Kansas City has been under state control for quite some time and their crime rate is rising. So it doesn’t work there,” said Quade, who added that she would support ending state control of that police station.

“St. Louis in the air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The performance was produced by Ulaa Kuziez, Miya Norfleet, Emily Woodbury, Danny Wicentowski, Elaine Cha And Alex Heuer. The audio engineer is Aaron Doerr and the production intern is Roshae Hemmings. Send questions and comments about this story to [email protected].

Send questions and comments about this story to [email protected].