JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri Republicans strengthened their hold on the state Senate during elections Tuesday winning a two-thirds majority in the state's higher chamber.
Open races in three districts vacated by Democrats leaving because of term limits went to the GOP.
In the 17th district, Republican Luann Ridgeway defeated Democrat Philip Willoughby by nearly 5,000 votes with 83,252 cast in the contest, a margin of 5.6 percent.
Republican Bill Stouffer was victorious over Democrat Page Bellamy in the 21st district, taking home 51.9 percent of the 72,489 ballots cast.
Chris Koster brought in 62.9 percent of the votes cast in the 31st district, defeating Democrat Larry Snider and Libertarian Len Ludlam.