February 6, 2004 - Posted at 7:27 a.m. CDT
JEFFERSON CITY, MO - Republican Senator Peter Kinder has officially thrown his hat in the ring as a candidate for his party's nomination for lieutenant governor. The 49-year-old lawmaker from Cape Girardeau has been the Senate's top-ranking member for the past two years.
The current lieutenant governor, Democrat Joe Maxwell, is not running due to his wife's illness. Kinder at one point was thinking of running for governor, but decided instead to support the candidacy of Matt Blunt, now the secretary of state. Kinder's primary opponent is expected to be Pat Secrest, a former House member from Manchester.
Talking about his candidacy yesterday, Kinder cited steps he initiated to reduce the Senate's budget and overall state spending. He also touted a proposed constitutional amendment that would bar a governor from including tax increases in his budget proposals.
Kinder works for Rust Communications, which owns seven daily newspapers in Missouri. He says that as the election nears he'll stop writing opinion pieces and editorials for the newspapers.