COLUMBIA — About 190 people attended the Boone County GOP Annual Chili Supper on Friday night to meet and mingle with local Republicans and listen to speeches by Gov. Matt Blunt and U.S. Rep. Kenny Hulshof, R-Mo.
“We have several things going for us. The party is going in the right direction,” state Rep. Ed Robb, R-Columbia, said in a speech. “I’m very proud to be a Republican.”
The Missouri politicians spoke about myriad topics, such as economic growth and Medicaid reform.
“We’re trying to be innovative in how we spend your tax dollars,” Blunt said.
Blunt, Hulshof and a group of Republican state legislators also spoke about their upcoming re-election campaigns.
“I am much more focused,” said Blunt, who is running for re-election next year against Democratic Attorney General Jay Nixon. “I think we’re doing important things. The state is in a better position than we were in 2005.”
Robb joked about his potential future opponents — namely Chris Kelly, who has served as a state representative and circuit court judge.
“I don’t know what it is about me, but everyone who wants to run against me comes out of retirement,” Robb said. “I’ll tell you what my duty is — to permanently retire them again.”
The event was held at American Legion Post 202 and featured a bowl of chili and desert for $10 per person or $30 per family. There was a silent auction and a raffle. All proceeds from the evening went to various local Republican clubs.
The crowd included members of the county Young Republicans, the Pachyderm Club, the Boone County Republican Women’s Club and the MU College Republicans.
“The other side has been talking about how the conservatives are depressed,” Hulshof said. “I think this crowd is a definitive response: Not here in Boone County.”