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Politically Speaking: Carpenter Seeks Return As Recorder Of Deeds

Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis Public Radio reporters Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies welcomed former St. Louis Recorder of Deeds Sharon Carpenter to the Politically Speaking podcast. 

Carpenter held the office for 34 years before she was forced to step down in July because she had violated a state nepotism law when she hired a great-nephew to work in her office for two summers. 

She is allowed to seek the post again and handily won the Democratic primary on Aug. 5.  Her opponents in November will include former 15th Ward Alderman Jennifer Florida, who was appointed by Mayor Francis Slay to complete Carpenter’s term.  Florida is running as an independent.

Carpenter grew up in St. Louis, attending Bishop DuBourg High School. She hails from the same 23rd Ward where Slay grew up and spent much of his early political career.

On the podcast, Carpenter said:

  • She didn’t realize that she had broken the state law until she was contacted by Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce (who also grew up in the 23rd Ward).
  • Carpenter last talked to Slay, a former ally, two days before she resigned, when she says Slay told her that he agreed she had to step down, and that he feared she wouldn’t be able to win the general election if she tries to regain the job.
  • She denied accusations from critics who, among other things, alleged that she smoked in her office and used staff and city supplies for political activities.
  • She fears the fall campaign could get nasty, and she plans to run TV ads for the first time ever.

Follow Jo Mannies on Twitter@jmannies

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter@jrosenbaum

Jason is the politics correspondent for St. Louis Public Radio.
Jo Mannies has been covering Missouri politics and government for almost four decades, much of that time as a reporter and columnist at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She was the first woman to cover St. Louis City Hall, was the newspaper’s second woman sportswriter in its history, and spent four years in the Post-Dispatch Washington Bureau. She joined the St. Louis Beacon in 2009. She has won several local, regional and national awards, and has covered every president since Jimmy Carter. She scared fellow first-graders in the late 1950s when she showed them how close Alaska was to Russia and met Richard M. Nixon when she was in high school. She graduated from Valparaiso University in northwest Indiana, and was the daughter of a high school basketball coach. She is married and has two grown children, both lawyers. She’s a history and movie buff, cultivates a massive flower garden, and bakes banana bread regularly for her colleagues.

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