The Buzz

Jessica Podhola will seek the 11th District state Senate seat along with J.J. Rizzo


Missouri state Rep. J.J. Rizzo won’t get a free ride to the state Senate.

Jessica Podhola, a union official and former executive director of the Jackson County Democratic Party, has announced on Facebook that she’ll seek the Independence-based 11th District state Senate seat as well.

Her motto: “Ready for Jess.”

From her Facebook page:

“Jess currently serves as the Governmental Affairs Director for the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, where she fights every day to make sure Missouri workers and their families have a voice in their state Capitol. She and her family have called Independence home for nearly 15 years.”

Rizzo, who has served in the state House since 2011, announced his intentions on Thanksgiving Day.

The two will meet in the August 2016 Democratic primary. The winner will succeed former state Sen. Paul LeVota, who resigned in August amid sexual harassment allegations involving Statehouse interns.

Gov. Jay Nixon has not called a special election, so the seat remains vacant.