State Rep. Mike Bernskoetter is running to succeed Mike Kehoe in the state Senate’s 6th District.
Both men are term-limited in their current jobs and can’t run again.
“I am running for the state Senate to secure the American dream for the next generation,” Bernskoetter said in a news release. “I want to do everything I can to make sure our kids and grandkids have the same opportunities for success that we had growing up. It seems that too often today, politicians are saddling the next generation with additional burdens rather than greater opportunities.”
If elected, Bernskoetter said, he will “continue to invest in the future by investing in education” — including State Technical College of Missouri in Linn.
“As a blue collar worker most of my life, I will work to expand access to great technical programs like we have here in the 6th District at the State Technical College of Missouri,” he said. “Skilled labor accounts for nearly 40 percent of all job growth in this country. In 2017 alone, nearly 2.5 million skilled-labor jobs will have been added to the workforce.
“We need to make sure that we are training our children for the jobs of the future and not forcing them into the traditional four-year bachelor’s degree path that has left so many of our children deep in debt and unemployed.”
Bernskoetter owns Art’s Pest Control in Jefferson City and said, as a small business owner, he “will take his experiences to get government out of the way and give every business the chance to be successful and create the jobs that will grow the economy.”
He said the “administrative and regulatory hurdles of simply starting a business in Missouri have stymied growth and have become a barrier for many young people just starting out.”
He also cited his experience as a fifth-generation farmer, saying he “knows the hard work necessary to run the family farm, especially in the modern economy.”
Even though Missouri has the second most farms in the country, with agriculture the state’s No. 1 industry, he said Missouri still ranks 14th and 15th “when it comes to total products sold and exported.” He added he’ll “work to help our family farmers have the competitive advantage they need to help sell and export more Missouri products.”
Bernskoetter’s supporters include Kehoe, according to a news release.
The Missouri Senate’s 6th District includes Cole, Moniteau, Morgan, Miller, Maries, Osage and Gasconade counties.
Filing for county, state and federal offices on next year’s ballot begins Feb. 27.