St. Louis County Executive Sam Page Wins First Elected Term
St. Louis County Executive Sam Page will continue in office after handily winning Tuesday’s election.
Page, a Democrat, defeated Republican Paul Berry III to complete the rest of the term vacated by Steve Stenger when he resigned over federal corruption charges. Page received 58% of the vote.
The position will again be up for election in 2022. The county council appointed Page to serve in April 2019. Page was favored to win Tuesday in a county dominated by Democratic voters.
“With the election behind us, it’s time to talk about what we have in common, a vision of a vibrant, successful, safe St. Louis County,” Page said in a Facebook live stream Tuesday night.
“I’ll be spending the next two years focused on those strengths and especially on ensuring people across the county -- regardless of your race, gender, zip code and tax bracket -- have access to good paying jobs, good healthcare, good childcare, good recreation and a safe neighborhood.”
Page has encountered a number of challenges in his roughly year and a half in office, including a nearly $20 million discrimination verdict involving the St. Louis County Police Department, but the biggest by far was the coronavirus pandemic.
He enacted restrictions on businesses and a mask mandate. He also got the county council to give him control over how federal coronavirus relief funds were spent. The decision sparked criticism from his political opponents, including Berry.
Page said he needed the authority to be able to act quickly in a fast-moving emergency.
Berry, a bail bondsman and business consultant, argued that the Page administration wasn’t quick enough in preparing for the pandemic earlier this year.
This was Berry’s second bid for county executive. Two years ago, he lost by about 20 percentage points to Stenger.
Republican St. Louis County Councilman Ernie Trakas retained his 6th District seat Tuesday by defeating state Rep. Bob Burns.
Trakas was elected in the district, which includes Affton, Lemay and Bella Villa, in 2016. He represents a part of largely unincorporated south St. Louis County, which makes him responsible for many of the development and zoning decisions for the area.
“One of my goals is going to be to try and increase communication and collaboration so that we can focus on what's important and try to find that common ground, when it can be found,” Trakas said.
Trakas became the first Republican to represent the district since 2008. His campaign focused on a bipartisan voting record and his time as head of the county’s ethics committee, which investigated Stenger prior to the former county executive’s federal indictment.
Trakas’ campaign also highlighted economic development in Affton and unincorporated areas of his district.
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