Published: Mon, May 07, 2018
Global | By Craig Ferguson

Missouri lawmakers call for special session to weigh governor's impeachment

Missouri lawmakers call for special session to weigh governor's impeachment

Missouri state lawmakers on Thursday called a special session to consider impeaching embattled Republican Gov. Eric Greitens.

The stage for the special session was set after a petition signed by at least three-fourths of the members of the state House of Representatives and the state Senate was presented to the Missouri secretary of state for certification, House Speaker Todd Richardson said.

Per the state Constitution, after the legislative session there are only two ways for the legislature to return: the governor calls a special session, or the House and Senate have a majority vote to hold a special session. No governor has ever been forced from office in Missouri.

Greitens is scheduled to go on trial on May 14 for an invasion of privacy indictment stemming from his encounter with the woman. Two staffers said they abided by Greitens' multiple orders to share the list, which The Associated Press reported yielded nearly $2 million in donations to the campaign.

Greitens is also facing criminal charges in connection with the affair and the handling of the donor list.

The special session can last no more than 30 days.

The session will focus on possible discipline for Greitens in connection with an investigation being conducted by a special committee. First is to give the special investigative committee more time to do their job and the second reason is to consider if articles of impeachment need to be started.

In the filing, Greitens' attorney specifically points to the release this week of the House committee's report about the donor list.

Immediately, Democrats again called for Greitens to step down or be impeached, including Rep. Gail McCann Beatty of Kansas City, who said Greitens "committed this theft to further his political career".

"Members signed this petition because they believe in a fair process that will not be rushed to conclusion by an artificial deadline", says Richardson. He is accused of taking an unauthorized photo of the woman while she was partially nude, blindfolded and bound in the basement of his St. Louis home.

Richardson said he already spoken with retired judges about the process of preparing a potential trial panel.

That committee found Greitens illegally used the list in his campaign. "The governor's legal team has problems with the facts of the public investigations, not the accuracy of the Post-Dispatch reporting".

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