KANSAS CITY (AP) — Missouri voters have elected Republican state Sen. Mike Parson lieutenant governor.
Parson defeated Democratic former U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan in Tuesday’s election. Parson, of Bolivar, is a cattle rancher and former sheriff.
He won despite facing an opponent with a considerable advantage in name recognition. Carnahan is the son of former Gov. Mel Carnahan, who died in a plane crash in 2000 while campaigning for a U.S. Senate seat he won posthumously.
Parson replaces Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder, who lost in the Republican primary for governor. Candidates for Missouri lieutenant governor don’t run on a joint ticket with gubernatorial candidates, but the lieutenant governor is next in line to lead the state if the governor no longer can serve.
Parson’s duties will include presiding over the Senate.
Pettis County voters overwhelmingly supported Parson, giving him 11,945 votes (66.95 percent), with only 4,938 votes (27.68 percent) for Carnahan. Libertarian candidate Steven R. Hedrick received 537 votes (3.01 percent) and Green Party candidate Jennifer Leach received 415 votes (2.33 percent).