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Pro-Choice Women Take National, State Nominations in Missouri Primary

Missourians gave the green light to five pro-choice women running for state and national posts in Tuesday’s primary. Claire McCaskill beat sitting Governor Bob Holden in the Democratic gubernatorial primary; Nancy Farmer had a landslide victory in the Democratic US Senate race; Linda Jacobsen ran unopposed in the Democratic primary for the US House of Representatives (District 9); Democrat Rebecca (Bekki) McDowell Cook won the primary for Lieutenant Governor; and Robin Carnahan was unopposed in the Democratic primary for Secretary of State. Pro-choice candidate Russ Carnahan also won his Democratic primary for the US House seat to be vacated by Dick Gephardt (District 3). McCaskill’s gubernatorial success marks the first time in state history that a sitting governor has been ousted in the primary, and if McCaskill wins, she will celebrate another state first as its first woman Governor. Governor Holden’s first term in office has been plagued from the beginning with issues surrounding his spending and his antagonism towards a Republican Legislature, reports the Seattle Post Intelligencer. McCaskill received strong support from rural Missouri in the primary campaign, and has been lauded as “an exemplary performer in every public office she has held” by the Columbia Daily Tribune in a campaign that focused heavily on leadership ability. In the race for US Senate Farmer, current state treasurer, will be challenging incumbent Kit Bond in November. Farmer has been endorsed by EMILY’S List and was the first woman treasurer of Missouri. Jacobsen, a businesswoman, will be challenging incumbent Kenny Hulshof (R) for a US House seat. Jacobsen’s platform includes strong support for women’s rights, reproductive rights, and the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). On the state level, both Cook and Robin Carnahan have been endorsed by NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri for their records on women’s issues. Robin and Russ Carnahan are the children of former Senator Jean Carnahan, who was elected to the Senate on her husband’s ticket after his death weeks before the 2000 election. She lost to Jim Talent in 2002. LEARN MORE Click here to read women’s narratives about barriers or successes in accessing reproductive health and family planning services.

Sources:

Columbia Daily Tribune 7/21/04; Seattle Post Intelligencer 8/4/04; State of Missouri unofficial election returns 8/3/04