It was a close race the whole night, with fellow GOP contenders Scott Rupp (R, Wentzville) and Bill Stouffer (R, Napton) occasionally grabbing the lead – but in the end Schoeller came in first with 35.3 percent of the vote. The Secretary of State's office confirmed the unofficial results shortly after 1:00 p.m. today.
“We sensed that we had the number of votes we needed, but we didn’t want to declare victory until the final results came in and we were confident that they would trend our way, and we’re just grateful that they did," Schoeller said.
Rupp came in second with 34.5 percent of the vote, while Stouffer finished third with 30.2 percent. Schoeller says both have called to concede and offer their congratulations; however, there's been no confirmation of that yet from either Rupp or Stouffer. All three voiced support for requiring photo ID’s at the polls throughout their campaigns. In one of his radio ads, Schoeller took aim at incumbent Democrat Robin Carnahan, who's leaving office at the end of the year.
“There’s a number of Missourians who have been very outspoken about their dissatisfaction when it comes to Robin Carnahan’s running of the office, especially when it comes to ballot language," Schoeller said. "We know that in the candidate that they put forth that we’re gonna see the exact same values put forth.”
That candidate is Jason Kander, who won the Democratic primary for Secretary of State last night.
"Whether serving in Afghanistan or pushing for ethics reform in Jefferson City, I think I've demonstrated an ability to do what's right, regardless of who's on the other side," Kander said. "That's the same approach that I'm gonna take when preparing ballot language."
Kander also opposes photo ID requirements for voters. He and Schoeller will face off in the November general election.
- For complete primary results and election information, go to our website, BeyondNovember.org. It's a collaboration with The St. Louis Beacon and Nine Network of Public Media.