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St. Louis County Councilwoman Rita Days on lack of rapport with Page

Rita Days, St. Louis County Council chairwoman, addresses the media on Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021, during a press conference on the recent uptick in regional automobile-related crimes at the St. Louis County government building in Clayton.
Brian Munoz
St. Louis Public Radio
Rita Days, St. Louis County Council chairwoman, addresses the media last year during a press conference on the uptick in regional automobile-related crimes.

St. Louis County Councilwoman Rita Days joined St. Louis Public Radio’s Politically Speaking podcast to discuss her bid for a full four-year term to represent the county council’s 1st District, which takes in a slew of municipalities in central and north St. Louis County.

The Bel-Nor Democrat is running against Jennings Councilman Terry Wilson in the primary. Wilson’s episode of Politically Speaking is available here.

Here’s what Days discussed on the show:

  • Why she hasn’t gotten along with St. Louis County Executive Sam Page. She’s served as the leader of an opposition coalition that’s been critical of Page’s administration.
  • The stakes for her contest with Wilson. If she loses, Page would likely have majority support on the council if he wins reelection to a full four-year term.
  • How she handled the public forum section of council meetings during debate over mask mandates. Some speakers expressed misleading or false information about vaccines or the virus.
  • How the county council should spend some of the American Rescue Plan Act funds and money from a settlement over the St. Louis Rams departure.

Days is a Lincoln University graduate who won a Missouri House seat in a 1993 special election. In 2002, Days became the first Black person ever elected to the state Senate from St. Louis County. She served as a senator until term limits forced her to retire from the legislature in 2010.

After working for then-St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley, Days served as Democratic director for the St. Louis County Board of Elections from 2011 to 2015. Before running for the county council in 2019, Days worked for the Missouri Housing Development Commission, which issues tax credits designed to cultivate housing for low-income people.

Days became the 1st District councilwoman in 2019, winning a special election to succeed the late Hazel Erby. She was chosen by the council to be its chair in 2021.

Since the 1st District is heavily Democratic, the winner of the Days-Wilson primary will almost certainly be elected in November to serve on the county council through 2026.

Follow Rachel Lippmann on Twitter: @rlippmann

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter: @jrosenbaum

Follow Rita Days on Twitter: @ritadays1

Rachel is the justice correspondent at St. Louis Public Radio.
Jason is the politics correspondent for St. Louis Public Radio.