The Democratic Party of Missouri has a new chairman.
On Saturday the state party committee picked long-time political strategist Roy Temple to replace Jackson County Executive Mike Sanders, who is stepping down after less than two years and says he may be interested in running for attorney general in 2016.
Even though Democrats have fared well as of late in state-wide elections, Republicans hold supermajorities in both the state House and Senate.
Though he won’t say what districts he believes are in play: “I’m not necessarily going to go through the list and give them warning."
He’s eyeing 2014 to start chipping away at Republican majorities in the legislature.
“There are seats Republicans currently hold that Democrats do very well in, in other levels,” Temple says. “Those are obviously places where we ought to be having strong candidates and looking for opportunities to pick up seats.”
From there, Temple says the plan is to push toward 2016 and 2018 when he says term limits will open up more seats.
“We’ve had a slide on the legislative front for a number of years, from a Democratic perspective,” Temple says. “We want to begin to reverse that trend in 2014, and to make significant gains again in 2016 and 2018 when there are many more open seats because of term limits. It’s a time to begin the turn around and put the building blocks in place for long-term success.”
Temple previously served as chief of staff for former Gov. Mel Carnahan and U.S. Sen. Jean Carnahan.
He also managed a campaign for former Gov. Bob Holden and was involved in U.S. Sen. John Kerry's 2004 presidential campaign.