Meet the Candidates: State Senate District 18

Crystal Stephens – D

Local Democratic party leader Crystal Stephens, who hails from Hannibal, said she would prioritize clean water, infrastructure and education if elected. At the candidate forum, she spoke strongly against dark money in Missouri politics, calling it obscene. Stephens also spoke about the importance of broadband and communication access and its effect on economic and community growth, and she said she supports building the Greenwood Autism Clinic. Stephens said she is not a career politician.


Cindy O’Laughlin – R

Cindy O’Laughlin, a businesswoman and first-time candidate from Shelby County, beat out three sitting state representatives for the Republican nomination in August. O’Laughlin branded herself as a political outsider during the primaries. At the Kirksville Area Chamber of Commerce candidate forum, O’Laughlin said she firmly supports the creation of the Greenwood Autism Clinic. O’Laughlin also said she wants to see more widespread access to broadband internet and would work toward entitlement and education reform if elected.