Missouri GOP attacks prosecutor, linking governor's indictment to NY billionaire
- Author: Joey Payne Feb 25, 2018,
Feb 25, 2018, 1:21
House Republican leaders announced they were forming a group of lawmakers to investigate the charges "and answer the question as to whether or not the governor can lead our state while a felony case moves forward".
Most Missouri Republicans seem to at least demand that a fair investigation take place.
"Given his desire to focus his full attention on moving forward in Missouri, he also no longer intends to serve on the Executive Committee of the RGA", the statement said.
With his police booking photo plastered across the front pages of Missouri newspapers on Friday, Mr. Greitens sought to portray the indictment as a politically motivated miscarriage of justice orchestrated by Kimberly M. Gardner, the Democratic prosecutor in St. Louis who brought the case before a grand jury.
Cooper notes that Gardner received more than $200,000 from groups tied to George Soros, a prolific Democratic donor.
The second-highest ranking member of the Missouri Senate is questioning whether Gov. Eric Greitens can effectively keep leading the state following his indictment on a felony charge.
Edward Dowd, an attorney for Greitens, said the governor will cooperate with that investigation.
Several reports indicate officers took Greitens into custody earlier on Thursday.
The quick injection of politics suggested that Greitens' potentially prolonged legal battle stemming from an extramarital affair could have implications in the 2018 elections for fellow Republicans, whom history suggests have a disadvantage as the party in power during the midterm of Donald Trump's presidency.
In a statement, they said Missourians should see this for what it is, a political hit job.
The Democratic Governors Association (DGA) called on the Republican Governors Association (RGA) when the charges were filed to remove Greitens from their Executive Committee.
Senator Jeanie Riddle released a statement saying she supports the house investigation and if the allegations against the governor prove to be true, he should resign. The Republican governor was released on his own recognizance after the grand jury found "probable cause" that Greitens broke the law.
Rowden says Greitens should step down for the "sake of our state".
State Reps. Kevin Corlew of Kansas City, Kevin Engler of Farmington and Becky Ruth of Festus all said on Friday that Greitens should resign. Greitens is further alleged to have blackmailed the woman - a local hairdresser - by threatening to make the photo public should she divulge the existence of their affair. He has admitted to the affair but denied criminal wrongdoing.
"I'm disappointed, first of all, in what came out a few months ago with the governor because that's not what he ran on", Henderson said. An investigation into his behavior opened in January.
"I made a personal mistake before I was Governor", he said.
Greitens' campaign for governor had access to the donor list for The Mission Continues, a veterans' charity he founded, and raised $2 million from individuals and entities that had given the charity significant contributions.
Gardner's spokeswoman says the facts will be argued in court, not in the media.