By Wally Kennedy
Voters in the Missouri House of Representatives 158th District will choose between Scott Fitzpatrick, a Republican candidate, and Sue Beck, a Constitution Party candidate, in the Nov. 6 election.
Fitzpatrick won his primary race in August by defeating two other candidates. He received 41.9 percent of the vote. Beck was unopposed in her race. They are seeking a seat once held by David Sater, who was term-limited in the House and is now unopposed for the 29th Senatorial District seat.
The 158th District takes in parts of Barry, Lawrence and Stone counties.
FITZPATRICK was raised in Shell Knob and attended schools in Cassville. He received a bachelor of science degree in business from the University of Missouri.
In 2003, while still in high school, he founded MariCorp U.S., a dock repair business on Table Rock Lake. While attending MU, he grew the company from six employees to 45. Revenue has increased from $700,000 in 2006 to about $6 million in 2011.
Said Fitzpatrick: “During a time when the federal government is in such a state of dysfunction, as it is now, the role of the state Legislature becomes ever more important. The most important job of a state legislator in the current environment is to protect the state and its people from the ways of a reckless federal government.
“We have to get government out of the way, not just at the federal level but at the state level as well, so that businesses can grow. It is as simple as that.”
BECK grew up in Detroit, Mich., and moved later to Traverse City, Mich., where she graduated from high school. While her husband, Ken, was in the Army as a nurse, she worked as an employee of the Army and Air Force Exchange Service. She worked her way up the career ladder with the Exchange and was exposed to various career fields, such as accounting, in-house buying and customer service. When her husband retired, they moved in 2004 to the Shell Knob area, where she became involved with several community service groups.
Beck said her independent conservative values are best reflected by the Constitution Party.
Beck said she would “promote constitutional legislation that will move us in the direction of state sovereignty. I will examine bills that seem to solve problems but in the end restrict our liberties and cast my vote accordingly, even if it goes against what seems to be popular at the time. Reform our welfare program to include lifetime collection limits and a cap on per-child benefits.
“Lowering tax rates for all is the key ... (along with) inching our way towards state sovereignty and saying ‘no thank you’ to federal government funds that have strings attached in the form of regulations.”