ST. LOUIS—The 2024 presidential race isn’t the only one on the ballot that, at this early stage, feels like it’s trending toward a rematch for St. Louis area voters. 

Of the five congressional districts touching the region in Missouri, two could feature the same general election candidates who appeared on the ballot in 2022.

Democrat Bethany Mann, of Brentwood, has filed to run again for the third congressional district seat held by U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-St. Elizabeth. Luetkemeyer won in 2022 with 65% of the vote. The district includes parts of St. Charles, Lincoln and Jefferson counties in the St. Louis area.

In the eighth district, a southeast Missouri district that includes parts of Jefferson County, Republican U.S. Rep. Jason Smith, of Salem, could again face Democrat Randi McCallian, after he won in 2022 with 76% of the vote.  

In the sixth district, which now spans northern Missouri from near Kansas City in the west into Lincoln County on the eastern side of the state, Republican U.S. Rep. Sam Graves could face a new challenger. Erik Richardson, a Democrat from Mexico, Mo. in Audrain County, filed Federal Election Commission paperwork this week to run next year. 

No Republican has announced a candidacy to potentially face U.S. Rep. Cori Bush, D-St. Louis, and no Democrat has announced a bid to try and unseat U.S. Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Ballwin. Former State Rep. Trish Gunby, a Democrat from West St. Louis County who lost to Wagner in 2022 has already said she will not run again.

That “rematch” vibe figures to extend to state legislative races in Missouri as well. 

In 2022, Republican Philip Oehlerking won a Missouri House seat representing the Ballwin area by 181 votes over Democrat Colin Lovett. Both will be back at it in 2024.

“It certainly was one of the closest ones. I now have a voting record that people can decide whether or not I deserve a second term,” Oehlerking told Spectrum News last month. “The house passed every single priority that the Republican caucus had, whether it was a good bill, bad bill, decent bill, we still got it passed and I will run on my voting record every day.“

“We ran a really solid campaign and we saw really great response out of the voters there and it was such a close election,” Lovett said. “We turned what was a 10 point race into a 1 point race and what that says to me is that West St. Louis County is resonating with our message and we're going to go back out there and give it another shot.”

Both candidates look to see heavier turnout in 2024 with it being a presidential year.

Eye on the U.S. Senate race

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Wesley Bell was briefly off the campaign trail due to eye surgery earlier this month.

Bell, the St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney, shared a social media post Saturday saying he was back in the office, with praise for eye doctors at Barnes Hospital. 




A spokesperson for the Prosecuting Attorney’s office said Bell had continued to be involved with case decisions despite the surgery. Bell appeared at a campaign function in Monroe City Monday.

One of Bell’s democratic rivals, State Sen. Karla May, announced her candidacy several weeks ago, but has yet to file paperwork with the Federal Election Commission. “I am absolutely filing the statement of candidacy,” she said in a text to Spectrum News Tuesday.

Bell, May and Lucas Kunce are running to face the incumbent, Republican U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley.

Missouri Supreme Court spot

A field of 22 candidates for the vacancy on the Missouri Supreme Court created by the retirement of Judge George Draper was released earlier this week, and there are some familiar names on the list. 

The group features nearly 10 current appellate court judges, including Judge Kelly Broniec, Chief Judge of the Eastern District Court of Appeals, and Judge John Torbitzky, also of the Eastern District Appellate Court. Torbitzky was the first judge appointed to oversee the quo warranto removal case filed against now-former St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner. Also on the list are St. Louis County Circuit Court judges Stanley Wallach and Thomas Albus.

A former General Counsel to Missouri Gov. Mike Parson, current Cole County Circuit Court Judge Christopher Limbaugh is on the list of applicants, as is State Sen. Tony Luetkemeyer, a Republican just re-elected to represent parts of Buchanan and Platte County in 2022. Luetkemeyer was also rumored to have been considering a run for statewide office next year. 

Candidates will interview in public in front of the Appellate Judicial Commission at the Supreme Court on Aug. 21-22. The panel will narrow the list to three finalists on Aug. 22. Gov. Parson will have 60 days after he gets the list of finalists to make the selection.

Race for Governor

House Minority Floor Leader Crystal Quade, D-Springfield, unveiled her first list of endorsements in her race for Governor Tuesday. The list of dozens of names includes the vast majority of Democratic caucus in the House, and two State Senators from the St. Louis region–Sen. Tracy McCreery, D-Olivette and Sen. Doug Beck, D-Affton. 

Quade is the first major Democrat to announce in the race. She could face a primary field that includes Mike Hamra, a Springfield businessman, who told the St. Louis Business Journal that he’s likely to” have a final decision later in the fall,” he said.

Whoever emerges on the Democratic side will be a decided underdog against the Republican nominee, potentially Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe, Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft, or State Sen. Bill Eigel.