Expensive primary election down to the wire for Missouri gubernatorial candidates

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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) - It is primary day in Missouri. Voters are choosing candidates to square off in November. Among the hot races: the Republican race for Governor and the Missouri first congressional race. We're also keeping a close eye out to see if there are any problems at the polls.

FOX 2's Paul Schankman is at the St. Louis County Election Board in Maplewood. Betsey Bruce has details on the governor's race and Elliot Davis is in University City with more on the Missouri first congressional race.

You would think the County Election Board would be where the action is. RIght now it is where the action isn't.  It is library-quiet, and that is just fine with them considering how things went last time around.

The pace of voting in St. Louis County is described as a trickle. About 25 percent was the estimate going into this election, which is lower than usual for an August election. This time, however, there are no countywide or statewide propositions on the ballot.

Even though the polls have been quiet this time around, the April 5th general municipal election was a disaster. The county ran out of paper ballots at some polling places and had the wrong ballots in some precincts.

Things are different this time. They ordered lots more paper ballots and they have deployed electronic voting machines, which was not the case in April. So far, so good.

"Nothing out of the ordinary. Every election we have a number of election judges that don`t show up and have voters who complain about electioneers moving in a little too close to the polling place. So we deal with them as they come, in but nothing out of the ordinary." said Eric Fey.

The county is also trying something new this election, voters can check with touch screens at 50 of the county`s 432 polling places. Election board officials visited some of those sites and say they heard nothing but positive commentS. They expect to use them at all polling places in November.

As far as absentee balloting is concerned. The total is around 12,000... which they say is about normal for an August election.
One of the biggest races to watch is the Republican race for governor. After several debates, months of political ads, and plenty of mud-slinging we will soon see who will be going head to head in the November elections.

In many respects this race is a reflection of the national presidential contest. Outsiders are challenging those with government experience. Four strong candidates are vying for the Republican nomination for Missouri governor. The latest poll by our partners at the St. Louis Post Dispatch shows it is a dead heat.

It's one of the most expensive primary races ever seen in Missouri. Pulling in millions of dollars from wealthy donors, out of state contributors and even one of the candidates.

St. Louis Businessman John Brunner argues his CEO experience will give the state an edge in drawing new jobs to Missouri. For the most part he has financed his own campaign.

Eric Greitens, a former Navy Seal and founder of the not-for-profit the Mission Continues, touts his outsider status and military training as the answer to what he claims is corruption in Jefferson City.

Catherine Hanaway, the first woman to serve as Missouri House Speaker and a former U.S. Attorney in St. Louis is projecting herself as tough law and order candidate who will end politics as usual in the state capitol.

Current Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder points to his extensive record in Missouri government as proof voters will know how he will act as Governor. He says Missouri voters are tired of the mud throwing from candidates and he has refused to participate in it.

The polls close at 7:00pm.

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