Jason Kander

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Jason Kander
Jason Kander 2011.jpg
39th Missouri Secretary of State
Assumed office
January 14, 2013
Governor Jay Nixon
Preceded by Robin Carnahan
Member of the Missouri House of Representatives
from the 44th district
In office
January 12, 2009 – January 14, 2013
Preceded by Jenee Lowe
Succeeded by Caleb Rowden
Personal details
Born (1981-05-04) May 4, 1981 (age 34)
Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Diana
Alma mater American University
Georgetown University
Religion Judaism
Website Official website
Official Facebook
Official Twitter

Jason Kander (born May 4, 1981) is the Missouri Secretary of State[1] and the youngest statewide elected official in America. Kander is a former Army Captain who served in Afghanistan as a military intelligence officer,[2] a member of the Missouri House of Representatives, and an attorney from Kansas City, Missouri.[3] During his career in the General Assembly, he represented the 44th district (which includes parts of Jackson County) from 2009 to 2013.[3] He was elected Secretary of State on November 6, 2012.[1] He is running for the United States Senate against Republican incumbent Roy Blunt in the 2016 election.[4]

Early life[edit]

Jason Kander is a fifth-generation Missourian. He was a senior at American University during the September 11 attacks, and soon after decided to enlist in the Army National Guard. He volunteered for a tour in Afghanistan, where "as a lieutenant, he led a team of intelligence soldiers who investigated dirty dealers inside the Afghan government."[5]

When he returned home, Kander took a position as an instructor at the Missouri National Guard's Officer Candidate School at Fort Leonard Wood.[6] In 2010, Kander was named one of 10 finalists for the Army Reserve Association's Maj. Gen. Strom Thurmond Outstanding Junior Officer of the Year Award.[7] As reported by the Missouri National Guard, "In their official evaluations, his commanding officers in Afghanistan described him as an outstanding leader that volunteered for dangerous assignments. The U.S. Director of Intelligence in Afghanistan advised the Army: 'Watch this officer's career closely; he is one of the best.'"[7]

Jason is married to Diana Kander, a businesswoman in Columbia, Missouri.[8]

Legislative career[edit]

Kander was elected to the Missouri House of Representatives in 2008, winning 68% of the vote in a three-way Democratic primary and facing no General Election opposition.[9]

In 2010, Kander worked with Republican State Representative Tim Flook to pass the first major ethics reform bill in Missouri since 1991.[10] The Kander/Flook bill "made it a felony to run campaign contributions through different committees — a form of money laundering that donors and politicians use to make it look like legislation is not bought and sold" and better empowered the Missouri Ethics Commission new powers.[5]

In 2010, he ran for re-election to his State Representative seat and earned 70% of the vote to defeat Republican Sally Miller.

He is the author of Sam and Lindsey's law, which helps authorities prevent kidnapping during custody battles. As a member of the Budget committee, he exposed a no-bid contract and helped balance the budget without raising taxes. He also passed legislation to take Missouri's human trafficking laws from some of the weakest to some of the strongest in the nation.

2012 Missouri Secretary of State's Race[edit]

When Missouri Secretary of State Robin Carnahan announced she would not run for re-election in late 2011, Kander immediately jumped into the race to replace her.[11] Kander faced MD Rabbi Alam in the primary election, winning 87% of the vote - the biggest margin of all statewide candidates in a primary in 2012.[12]

Kander ran against the Speaker Pro Tem of the Missouri House, State Representative Shane Schoeller, in the General Election. As of the October Quarterly Report, Kander had $1,075,000 on hand[13] while Schoeller had $297,450[14] to spend for the rest of the election. However, Schoeller received over $500,000 in the final weeks from a DC Political Action Committee.

On November 6, 2012, Kander narrowly defeated Schoeller and was elected as the next Missouri Secretary of State.[1]

Electoral history[edit]

2012 Race for Secretary of State of Missouri[15]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Jason Kander 1,298,022 48.9%
Republican Shane Schoeller 1,258,937 47.4%
Libertarian Cisse W. Spragins 70,814 2.7%
Constitution Justin Harter 27,710 1.0%
Margin of victory 39,085 1.5%


  1. ^ a b c Jason Hancock (2012-12-04). "KC's Kander now secretary of state, and maybe on the rise". Kansas City Star Midwest Democracy. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  2. ^ September 25, 2012 (2012-09-25). "Candidate Profile: Rep. Jason Kander - KY3". Articles.ky3.com. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  3. ^ a b "Missouri House of Representatives". House.mo.gov. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  4. ^ "PRESS RELEASE: Jason Kander Announces He Will Run for United States Senate". The Missouri Times. February 19, 2015. Retrieved February 19, 2015. 
  5. ^ a b Martin, David. "Jason Kander tried to clean up Missouri politics, but the waters wanted to stay muddy | Martin". The Pitch. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  6. ^ "Officer Candidate School gives Guardsmen chance to achieve goals". Moguard.com. 2010-12-04. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  7. ^ a b "Missouri National Guard Soldier Receives National Recognition". Moguard.com. 2001-09-11. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  8. ^ http://www.sos.mo.gov/sosbio.asp
  9. ^ http://www.sos.mo.gov/Enrweb/allresults.asp?eid=195
  10. ^ TONY MESSENGER tmessenger@post-dispatch.com 573-635-6178 (2010-05-03). "Steve Tilley holds the key to fate of ethics reform bill". Stltoday. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  11. ^ Kraske, Steve. "Steve Kraske | Jason Kander is quickly making his move". KansasCity.com. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  12. ^ "Nov 6, 2012 General Election: Election Night Reporting: Missouri Secretary of State". Enr.sos.mo.gov. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 
  13. ^ http://www.ethics.mo.gov/EthicsWeb/CampaignFinance/CF11_CommInfo.aspx?MECID=C071012&Type=I
  14. ^ http://www.ethics.mo.gov/EthicsWeb/CampaignFinance/CF11_CommInfo.aspx?MECID=C061132&Type=I
  15. ^ Missouri Secretary of State Election Archives, 2012 General Election, Retrieved December 14, 2012

External links[edit]