Missouri no longer a swing state - KMOV.com

Missouri no longer a swing state

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The debate at Washington University will likely be the only time the candidates for President visit Missouri during the 2016 campaign season (Credit: KMOV). The debate at Washington University will likely be the only time the candidates for President visit Missouri during the 2016 campaign season (Credit: KMOV).

ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) -- The debate at Washington University will likely be the only time the presidential candidates visit Missouri during the 2016 campaign season.

For decades, Missouri was known as a bellwether state, choosing the winning candidate in most elections.

But in recent election cycles, the politics of the state have leaned heavily for Republicans and that has left many candidates skipping campaign stops in Missouri.

"It's not as crucial as it used to be," said David Kimball, political science professor at University of Missouri - St. Louis. 

According to Kimball, the shift to the right by voters in rural areas has lead to the state no longer being considered a swing state. In the past those rural voters tended to vote independently.

According to the website, FairVote.com, in 2008 Barack Obama and John McCain spent nearly $10 million in Missouri and made 20 campaign stops.

By 2012, both parties wrote off the state to Republicans and Obama and Mitt Romney did not make a single stop in Missouri during the regular campaign.

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