Sarah Steelman is counting on Missouri’s recent legislation backing ethanol mandates to gain an advantage on Rep. Kenny Hulshof in Tuesdays GOP gubernatorial primary:
In recent weeks, Steelman has played up one key difference between the candidates. Blunt and the Republican-led Missouri Legislature pushed through a requirement that nearly every gallon of gasoline contain 10 percent ethanol, a biofuel made of corn. Hulshof, who is also a corn farmer, supports the mandate. Steelman initially supported the requirement but now says government mandates often drive up prices.
The injection of the ethanol issue late in the campaign has everything to do with Missouri’s political geography. To win a statewide GOP primary, a candidate must snare a majority of votes from the St. Louis and Kansas City suburbs, the rural middle of the state and southern Missouri, which includes the vast Lake of the Ozarks recreation area.
Hulshof is best known in his northeast and central Missouri congressional district, which includes many corn farmers. Steelman’s base of support is southern Missouri, where there are more farmers raising livestock than growing crops who are paying high prices for corn in part because of the demand created by the increase in ethanol production.
Ethanol is wasteful, and diverts resources from needy populations while causing feed prices to rise on livestock farms. If this article says anything, it’s that Sarah Steelman understands what it means to be fiscally responsible, while Rep. Kenny Hulshof is just going through the motions.
You can donate to Sarah Steelman’s campaign here. If you a in Missouri, make sure to head out to the polls Tuesday and vote for Sarah Steelman.