MISSOURI – We’re less than a week away from the midterm elections. Missourians will select candidates for U.S. Senate, U.S. House, and state legislature seats, among other offices.
Recent election results indicate a Republican stronghold in the Show-Me State. The majority of Missouri voters have sided with the GOP candidate in each of the last six presidential elections, and the GOP governor three of the past five times. All but one current statewide office are also occupied by Republicans.
Before the turn of the 21st century, Missouri had the reputation of being a battleground state. Voters have sided with the eventual president-elect in all but one election since 1904. More Democrat governors (13) have served in terms than Republican governors (8) in that same span. That’s not the case of recent, but some blue-supported spots still emerge in a sea of red.
Ahead of the Nov. 8 general election, FOX 2 compiled results from the November general elections in 2016 and 2020 to determine which counties lean most heavily toward Democrat and Republican candidates.
To determine the reddest and bluest counties, FOX 2 calculated the average margin of victory in each Missouri county using election results in the 2016 and 2020 gubernatorial elections and presidential elections.
The following map displays the average margin of victories for each of Missouri’s 117 polled counties in 2016 and 2020, based on governor and presidential race results. The averages are based on election results from the Missouri Secretary of State’s Office.
The Most "Blue" Counties:
- St. Louis City (64.3%)
- St. Louis County (20.2%)
- Jackson County (20%)
- Boone County (10.8%)
These are the only four counties that have had a blue majority in each of the last two governor and presidential races. These counties represent three of the four most populated metropolitan areas of Missouri (St. Louis, Kansas City and Columbia). St. Louis City is considered the "bluest" county with a 64.3% margin of victory for the Democratic candidates.
The Most "Red" Counties
- Barton County (72.5%)
- Mercer County (67%)
- Bollinger County (66%)
- Wright & Stoddard Counties (65.5%)
- Carter County (64.2%)
Five of the top six GOP-backed counties are based in southern Missouri, including a few in the Missouri Ozarks region. None of these counties have a population higher than 29,000 people. Barton County, located in southwest Missouri just north of Joplin, is considered the "reddest" county with a 72.5% margin of victory for the Republican candidates.
Closest Gap to "Blue" Counties
- Clay County (5.4%)
- Platte County (6.5%)
- St. Charles County (18.5%)
- Buchanan County (21%)
- Greene County (21.7%)
Four of five "red" counties with the closest gap are in western Missouri. Two that appear closest to battleground territory, Clay and Platte counties, are located in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Buchanan County and Greene County represent parts of St. Joseph and Springfield. St. Charles County is the closest with local ties to the St. Louis region. All of these regions are home to somewhere between 80,000-400,000 residents.
The election is on Nov. 8. FOX 2 will provide results and live coverage after the polls close. For FOX 2’s in-depth voter’s guide for what else to expect in the November election, click here.