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In the primary for Missouri’s 7th congressional district seat, Billy Long is the winner of the Republican primary and Scott Eckersley is the winner of the Democratic primary. KSMU’s Adam Murphy reports.
Billy Long won with about 42 percent of the vote in the eight candidate Republican primary. The Springfield auctioneer says the voters showed that they are fed up with Washington.
“People don’t want the same old same old. They’re ready to send businesspeople and citizens to D.C. instead of career politicians, and I think that came out very loud and clear tonight,” said Long.
Long says his campaign will continue much of the same going into November, including grass roots efforts and meeting as many people as possible. He says he was confident going into the primary, and he is confident going into the November elections.
Bruce Barton is the vice-chair of the Greene County Republican Party. He says the party is now going to focus on uniting as Republicans to win the November elections. He says the Democrats will have some trouble in November because of their image.
“The Democratic Party really has an image problem, and I know I’ve walked the neighborhoods and talked to people and people are just like Billy says, they’re fed up, they’re really mad about what’s going on. And so, I think the Democratic Party is going to have a real tough time making inroads, especially in this type of a district,” Barton said.
Long’s November opponent will be Democrat Scott Eckersley. Eckersley received about 72 percent of the votes in his primary against Tim Davis of Branson. He says he appeals to voters because of his integrity and willingness to put his constituents first. Eckersley says that he is ready to go fight in Washington.
“I think folks here are looking for a David to go up there and fight a Goliath, and I’m that guy. I’ve proven it, and I’m humbled by the support, and I plan to proceed exactly that way,” said Eckersley.
The 7th congressional district hasn’t had a Democratic representative since Charlie Brown in 1961. But, Eckersley says people in the district have lost faith in their representatives. He says he is going to get those people off the couch to vote.
Matthew Patterson is the executive director of the Greene County Democratic Party. He says this year’s race looks a lot like the last time a Democrat won in the 7th congressional district. He says history may repeat itself.
“Charlie came out of the primary and worked those voters who voted for the other guy, and that’s exactly what Scott’s going to do. And he’s got a message that I think resonates a lot better than the message we’ve been seeing out of the eight Republicans running,” said Patterson.
For more information on the candidates, visit our website: ksmu.org and click on “Road to the Capitol”.
For KSMU News, I’m Adam Murphy.