rory ellinger

Missouri House of Representatives

Missouri House member Rory Ellinger, of St. Louis County, has died after a battle against liver cancer.

Lawmakers announced Ellinger's death Wednesday in Jefferson City. He was 72.

The Democrat had announced last month that he would not seek re-election because of his health, and he had not been at the Capitol recently. Ellinger's failing health sparked quick action by lawmakers to pass his legislation that could allow nursing mothers to be excused from jury duty.

rory ellinger
Missouri House of Representatives

An ailing state lawmaker who is leaving office as he battles liver cancer will see one of his legislative priorities signed into law Thursday by Gov. Jay Nixon in the legislator's hometown.

  Legislation to expand legal protections in Missouri for breast-feeding moms is on its way to Gov. Jay Nixon.

missouri capitol
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

Missouri House Democrats have shuffled several of their leadership positions.

Chris Kelly, of Columbia, was elected yesterday as caucus chairman to replace Steve Webb, of Florissant. Webb resigned his House seat last month while facing criminal charges. Kelly had been the caucus vice chairman and served 12 years in the House during the 1980s and 1990s. He also has served in the House since 2009.

The Democrats' new caucus vice chairwoman will be Gina Mitten, of St. Louis. She was elected to the state House in 2012.