(Missourinet) Republicans will control the Missouri House 116-47, when the 2019 session begins in January in Jefferson City.
House Speaker-designee Elijah Haahr, R-Springfield, notes 116 seats is larger than a supermajority.
“We have not only defended a lot of the really tough seats that we had, Steve Helms here in Springfield that a lot of people thought might go down, we protected him,” Haahr says.
State Rep. Steve Helms, R-Springfield, defeated Democrat Rob Bailey on Tuesday for that Greene County House seat.
Haahr says the incoming 116-member House GOP caucus will be one of the largest majorities in House history. During Tuesday’s live Missourinet election night coverage, Haahr notes that Republicans had flipped three Democratic House districts to red.
“Mary Elizabeth Coleman in the 97th (district) in Jefferson County. Mike McGirl in the 118th (district), also in Jefferson County,” says Haahr.
Coleman unseated State Rep. Mike Revis, D-Fenton, and McGirl beat Democrat Barbara Marco in the other race.
While Democrats will be outnumbered in January, they defeated two incumbent GOP lawmakers on Tuesday: State Reps. Kevin Corlew, R-Kansas City and Mark Matthiesen, R-Maryland Heights.
House Republicans caucused Wednesday at the Statehouse, and chose State Rep. John Wiemann, R-O’Fallon, as Speaker Pro Tem. They also re-elected State Rep. Rob Vescovo, R-Arnold, as Majority Floor Leader.
The 36-year-old Haahr is reportedly the youngest House Speaker in the nation, and also will be the first Speaker in history from Springfield. The formal election for Speaker will take place in January, when the full House returns.
House Minority Leader Gina Mitten, D-St. Louis, also appeared live on Missourinet Tuesday night. She says criminal justice reform will be a top priority for House Democrats in 2019, and also wants to see movement on early voting.