News Briefs

Caleb Rowden met with NRCC about potential Missouri Congressional run

By: - July 14, 2021 7:40 am

Senate Majority Leader Caleb Rowden, R-Columbia (photo courtesy of Missouri Senate Communications).

State Senate Majority Leader Caleb Rowden traveled to Washington, D.C., this week to meet with the National Republican Congressional Committee about a possible run for Missouri’s 4th Congressional District.

Rowden, R-Columbia, has been openly mulling joining the already crowded field to replace U.S. Rep. Vicky Hartzler, who announced she was running for the U.S. Senate last month.

“I had incredibly positive responses from my meetings in Washington,” Rowden told The Independent. “The NRCC needs candidates in open seats like the 4th Congressional District who are governing conservatives with a proven record of winning campaigns and building broad coalitions. This will allow them to focus their resources on winning battleground races and taking back control of Congress.”

There are already four declared candidates for the seat — Former Boone County Clerk Taylor Burks, former state Sen. Ed Emery of Lamar, Cass County Commissioner Ryan Johnson and state Rep. Sara Walsh of Ashland. Several other candidates are considering joining the race.

The meeting with the NRCC, which was first reported by the National Journal, took place Monday.

Rowden said he will not make a final decision about whether to run “until after the birth of our third child in August.”

As he weighs a possible run, Rowden is also facing calls from Johnson to step down from Senate redistricting committee that will have a key role in drawing new Congressional boundaries this fall.

“Sen. Rowden’s flirtation with a congressional race while he is sitting on the redistricting committee is a clear conflict of interest,” Johnson said in a statement posted on social media.

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Jason Hancock
Jason Hancock

Jason Hancock has been writing about Missouri since 2011, most recently as lead political reporter for The Kansas City Star. He has spent nearly two decades covering politics and policy for news organizations across the Midwest, and has a track record of exposing government wrongdoing and holding elected officials accountable.