Local legislative races taking shape

Sunday, November 11, 2007 | 4:54 p.m. CST; updated 12:30 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 22, 2008

COLUMBIA — Although the deadline for filing is still four months away, the races for local seats in the Missouri House of Representatives are beginning to take shape. All but one of the districts that represent part of Columbia or Boone County include an incumbent seeking re-election. Here’s a list of the candidates who have announced.


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Ninth District

In the Ninth District, which represents parts of Boone, Howard, Chariton, Audrain and Monroe counties, Democratic incumbent Paul Quinn, 64, of Monroe City has confirmed his intention to defend his seat in 2008. As of now, he is running unchallenged. Quinn is a semi-retired professional public servant. Before being elected to the House, he spent 10 years as the Monroe County assessor and 12 years as a Monroe County commissioner. Quinn in 2006 won a primary race against Ewell Lawson of Columbia. In the general election, he defeated Republican Kathyrne Harper of Fayette. Quinn serves on several committees, including the Appropriations and Fiscal Review committees.

For more about Quinn's campaign, go to Quinn’s official Web site.

21st District

The 21st District will see incumbent Republican Steve Hobbs, 47, run for his final term before his career in the House smacks up against term limits in 2010. Hobbs is a farmer who lives in Mexico. He is the chairman of the Conservation and Natural Resources Committee. He is also on the Agriculture Policy and Budget Committees.

Go to Hobbs’ official Web site at Web site.

Boone County Northern District Commissioner Skip Elkin, a Hallsville Democrat, is considering whether to run for the seat a second time. He narrowly lost to Hobbs in 2006.

The 21st District represents parts of Audrain, Boone, Callaway and Monroe counties.

23rd District

With incumbent Democrat Jeff Harris of Columbia running for attorney general, the 23rd District will be an open race. Two candidates are vying for the Democratic nomination in the district, which represents much of western Columbia.

Russ Unger, 45, is an instructor for the apprentice program for the Sheet Metal Workers Local 36. He graduated from Hickman High School in 1981. Although Unger has never held an elected public office, he’s served on several boards and commissions, mostly related to professional programs.

Go to Unger’s campaign Web site.

Cande Iveson, 50, is a lobbyist who has done most of her work for nonprofit children’s advocacy groups, including Citizens for Missouri’s Children. She runs her own firm, Policy Works Inc. Iveson graduated from Rock Bridge High School and holds a master’s degree in social work from Washington University. Iveson does not yet have a campaign Web site.

No Republican candidate has announced intentions to run in the 23rd District.

24th District

Republican incumbent Ed Robb, 65, intends to defend his seat. Robb is a former MU economics professor who was elected to the House in 2004. Robb is the vice-chairman of the Budget Committee and has historically been an advocate of conservative budgetary spending.

You can visit Robb’s official Web site.

After several other people talked about running, one highly experienced candidate has decided to challenge Robb. Chris Kelly, 61, was a state representative from 1982 to 1994. He is also a former associate circuit judge and the Boone County clerk. He served on the House Budget Committee for 10 years as a legislator, four of those years as chairman. Kelly said he is running to reverse huge cuts in higher education funding made during recent years. Kelly does not yet have a campaign Web site.

The 24th District represents much of south Columbia and southern Boone County.

25th District

Democrat Judy Baker, 47, will defend her seat. Baker ran unopposed in 2006. Baker was elected to the House in 2004. She serves on both the Appropriations and Small Business committees. She is a health care consultant and an adjunct professor of managerial economics at Columbia College, according to the Official Manual of the State of Missouri.

Go to Baker’s official Web site.

No GOP candidate has announced intentions to run against her.

The 25th District represents eastern Columbia.

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