One-third of Mo. lawmakers new faces in Capitol

Thursday, January 10, 2013

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Many of the Missouri lawmakers taking office at the state Capitol will be new, including several from Southeast Missouri.

A combination of term limits that barred more veteran legislators from seeking re-election, a redistricting process that rearranged state legislature seats and a few electoral defeats resulted in the new faces.

In all, there will be 12 state senators and 56 state House members who last year were not serving in their current legislative chamber. Among them are Reps. Kathy Swan, R-Cape Girardeau, Dennis Fowler, R-Advance, and Holly Rehder, R-Sikeston, and Sen. Wayne Wallingford, R-Cape Girardeau.

Some of the new lawmakers have previous legislative experience. Republican House member Kevin Engler of Farmington spent two terms in the Senate and was majority leader. He also previously served one House term. Wallingford was a House member before jumping over to the Senate. In addition, four House Democrats who lost re-election in 2010 are returning after a two-year break.

The 2013 legislative session started Wednesday.

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