Candidate Highlight: Governor of Missouri

“It’s a broken system, the old way of doing politics... As auditor I fought it. As governor I’ll end it. I’ll take a new approach, one that’s open, that puts your needs first — your health care, your wages, your family.” -Nicole Galloway

Meet Nicole Galloway, the State Auditor of Missouri and one of the Democratic candidates for governor. Nicole is currently the only woman serving in statewide office, the only Democrat in an elected statewide office, and the only person in Missouri history to have a baby while in statewide office. As auditor, Nicole uncovered hundreds of millions of wasted tax dollars, and is now running on a platform of transparency and anti- corruption. She aims to redirect the money into healthcare and education, and to create jobs and opportunities for rural communities. We reached out and asked Nicole three questions, here are her responses*:

1. What made you decide to run?

I'm running because Missouri's working families deserve a governor who is on their side. For far too long, well connected insiders have contrived deals in backrooms to get what they want, while working families struggle. I'm out to change that.

Electing leaders who are engaged and responsive to the needs of all Missourians truly matters. And never before has it been so clear that the decisions our Governor makes have such a dramatic impact on our day-to-day lives. Especially in times of crisis.

Our state is dealing with so many challenges: a pandemic that has disproportionately impacted our most vulnerable. An economy that even before the last few months was leaving too many behind. And a state government that on issue after issue cares more about what political insiders want than the urgent needs of our communities, our businesses, and our families.

As Missouri's state Auditor, I've never settled on things just being the way they are. I've rooted out waste and corruption, uncovering $350 million in fraud and abuse. My audits have resulted in 50 criminal counts brought against corrupt public officials. As Governor, I won't settle either. I'll put working families at the center of everything we do, with working people at the table.

As a mom of three young boys, I think a lot about their future. I want Missouri to be the best place in America to put down roots and raise a family. Even before this current crisis, far too many families were living right on the edge. Our response to this virus, our recovery from it, will be the defining issue of our times. We have to recover and rebuild in a way that leaves no one behind.

2. What are three qualities that make you better than Eric Morrison (D- primary challenger)or Mike Parson (R- incumbent)?

I haven't been in Jefferson City for decades. I'm not part of the same insider crowd that always seems to get what they want while working families continue to struggle. Right now, the priorities are all wrong. On healthcare, on cuts to education, on community safety.

I've proven that I have what it takes to win statewide in Missouri as a Democrat. In 2018, I won by 6-points in my race for Auditor. I have a brand and a message that connects with the swing voters you have to win to succeed in a statewide campaign.

I've shown I get things done. From passing ten bills in a republican-controlled legislature and seeing them signed into law by republican governors, to forcing policy changes that benefit taxpayers, I have shown the people of Missouri that I get results. It's the same energy I'll bring to the Governor's office.

3. What is the first thing you would do in office?

The first thing I'll do is implement Medicaid Expansion to give more than a quarter million working Missourians the healthcare that they need. Then, I'll get to work on a range of policy measures to lower the costs of prescription drugs and invest in our state's healthcare infrastructure.

As part of my healthcare agenda, I'll replace the state Health Director who launched a political attempt to shut down the last remaining abortion provider in Missouri. He went so far as to keep a spreadsheet to track patients' menstrual cycles, an incredible invasion of privacy. He's also been leading the state's botched response to the COVID pandemic.

Missouri needs a new way forward on healthcare, and that will be my focus on day 1.

“I don’t even know where you come up with that question of personal responsibility as governor of the state of Missouri when you’re talking about a virus. That’s no different than the flu virus or do I feel guilty because we have car accidents and people die every day? No, I don’t feel guilty about that. I don’t know that any person’s responsible for that no more than anyone else standing out here in this hallway.”

-Mike Parson

Meet Mike Parson, the incumbent Republican Governor of Missouri. Parson has served in the army, the Missouri House of Representatives, and the Missouri Senate. Elected as Lieutenant Governor in 2016, he was sworn in as Governor in 2018 following the resignation of Eric Greitens. While in office, Parson has received an A+ rating from the NRA, and signed the Missouri Stands for the Unborn Act in 2019, which criminalizied abortions after eight weeks of pregnancy. This week, he signed a new crime bill that critics say will lock more people up, but will not improve public safety. The governor has also been criticized for opening up the state among a surge of Coronavirus cases.

The primary for the gubernatorial race is August 4th. Here’s how you can support Nicole’s campaign:

*all answers are posted in full, we will never crop or edit a candidate’s words