Missouri 9th District
Little Dixie, the swath of northeast Missouri along the Mississippi River, was settled by Southerners from Kentucky and Virginia. Its most famous native son is Mark Twain, born Samuel Langhorne Clemens in Hannibal, then as now a little town on bluffs overlooking the river. Hannibal was the thinly disguised St. Petersburg of Twain’s classics, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Little Dixie was pro-Confederate during the Civil War, and Callaway County in fact declared its independence from the Union. For many years faithfully Democratic, Little Dixie has reared some notable politicians. One was Champ Clark, speaker of the U.S. House from 1911 to 1919 and a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1912. Another was Clarence Cannon, author of the definitive text on the House’s parliamentary procedures and chairman of the House Appropriations Committee from 1941 to 1964, except for four years of Republican control.
2008 Presidential Vote
|Cook Partisan Voting Index|
The 9th Congressional District of Missouri is the descendant of the Little Dixie districts that elected Clark and Cannon, but slow population growth has expanded it far to the south and into the foothills of the Ozarks. It includes Columbia, home of the University of Missouri, and Fulton, home of Westminster College, where former Prime Minister Winston Churchill, accompanied by President Harry Truman, told the world in 1946: “From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the Continent.” The district includes the western edge of the St. Louis metro area, western St. Charles County, and Franklin County south of the Missouri River. Its grain fields have become a center for ethanol production. Despite its Democratic heritage, the 9th votes mostly Republican now. George W. Bush carried the district with 59% in 2004, and John McCain carried it with 55% in 2008.