Primary analysis: ward and township breakouts
It was a bad day for Kratky. His organization also endorsed Mark Abel for State Treasurer and approval of Amendment 1 (Rockaway Beach casino), but did not carry either. Most embarrassing was its endorsement of Joan Barry over the ward's own favorite son Mariano Favazza in the 3rd District congressional contest. Favazza trounced Barry in the 16th by nearly 2-to-1 and carried the ward with 38% of the vote. The ward endorsement, as well as recorded telephone messages from ward icon Jim Shrewsbury, could only garner Barry a weak 2nd-place finish, with 19.3%. District winner Russ Carnahan could only muster a 4th place finish in the conservative ward, the boyhood home of his Republican opponent, Bill Federer.
The 16th wasn't the only ward where Favazza took on the ward organization and won. He also carried the 12th and 23rd, whose ward healers had also endorsed Barry, and also the 10th. Favazza also finished ahead of Barry in two other wards where Barry was endorsed, the 14th and 24th, but which Jeff Smith won.
Of course, Jeff Smith was the real story in the City, carrying nine wards (and just two votes shy of a tenth) and the city as a whole, without a single ward endorsement. He also carried four St. Louis County townships and the county as a whole. His intense and effective grassroots effort almost succeeded in a very high turnout election, where grassroots activities are typically overwhelmed by the influx of marginal voters who are more susceptible to media advertising and bandwagon perceptions. In the end, those dynamics carried Carnahan to victory, though not by much.
Of course, the closeness of wins don't usually matter. Carnahan's squeaker in this contest followed his narrow primary win in his initial run for state representative in 2000. That career start is not unlike that of the seat's current holder, Dick Gephardt, whose first election victory was an approximate 100-vote win over a first-term Republican incumbent for 14th Ward alderman in 1971.