MO House has signatures for special session regarding Gov. Greit - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

MO House has signatures for special session regarding Gov. Greitens

Missouri House has enough signatures to call a special session that could impeach Republican Gov. Eric Greitens (Source: Missouri.gov) Missouri House has enough signatures to call a special session that could impeach Republican Gov. Eric Greitens (Source: Missouri.gov)
JEFFERSON CITY, MO (KFVS & AP) -

The Latest on the investigation of Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens (all times local):

7:58 p.m.
    
The Missouri Legislature has called itself into a special session to consider impeaching Gov. Eric Greitens following allegations of sexual misconduct and misuse of charity resources.
    
House and Senate leaders announced Thursday night that they had gathered petition signatures from more than three-fourths of all lawmakers in each chamber, which is the threshold required in the state constitution.
    
The special session will start at 6:30 p.m. May 18 - just 30 minutes after the regular session ends. It will mark the first time in Missouri history that a Legislature has called itself into a special session.
    
It comes as Greitens is facing two felony charges - one related to a 2015 extramarital affair and the other to using a charity donor list for his political campaign.

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Senate Leader Ron Richard, R-Joplin, said the Senate respects the process outlined in the Missouri Constitution; however, it’s not something that will happen overnight.

“The process has monumental consequences, and the gravity of what we are commencing is not taken lightly,” stated Sen. Richard. “I believe we should give the House Special Investigative Committee on Oversight more time so they can continue their investigation and make sure they have all the facts. The House and Senate both have different roles in this process; however, the Senate stands ready to do our constitutional duty if it becomes necessary.”

House Minority Leader Gail McCann Beatty (D-Kansas City) released this statement on Thursday, May 3:

“In the 30 years since Missourians granted the General Assembly the constitutional authority to call itself into special session, it has never before exercised that power. Given the high threshold for lawmaker support required, successfully doing so was long considered all but impossible. But with the alleged crimes committed by Eric Greitens and his refusal to do the honorable thing and resign, the impossible became possible.

“The House investigative committee has done outstanding work to date, but as we near the end of the regular legislative session, it is clear the committee needs additional time to finish building its case and prepare articles of impeachment for the House to consider. Pursuing impeachment against a Missouri governor is history none of us wants to make, but Eric Greitens’ actions have made it unavoidable.”

6:45 p.m.

The Missouri House has enough signatures to call a special session that could impeach Republican Gov. Eric Greitens.

House Minority Leader Gail McCann Beatty told the Kansas City Star Thursday that 138 members had signed a petition, more than the three-fourths threshold needed in the 165-seat chamber.

Three-fourths of the Senate would also need to agree to a special session. More than one-third of senators from both parties have already called on the governor to resign in the wake of two felony charges. A spokeswoman for the Senate president pro tem confirmed that the Senate has the petition and is collecting signatures.

Greitens faces his first criminal trial May 14 related to an invasion of privacy charge stemming from an extramarital affair he had before he took office. A House report released Wednesday also presented evidence that the governor filed false information with the Missouri Ethics Commission.

4 p.m.

The publisher of a political publication says he paid his own money to buy audiotapes made by the ex-husband of a woman who had an affair with Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens and that he intended to use them to write a book.

Missouri Times publisher Scott Faughn, in a column Thursday, says he bought the recordings from Al Watkins, attorney for the ex-husband who secretly recorded his wife discussing the affair.

Greitens goes to trial May 14 on an invasion of privacy charge stemming from the affair.

Watkins told reporters last week he received two anonymous $50,000 payments in January and deduced they were to pay the ex-husband's legal fees. Watkins declined comment Thursday. Faughn did not immediately respond to questions about whether he provided $50,000 or the entire $100,000.

11 a.m.

Video cameras will not be allowed in the courtroom when Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens goes to trial later this month in St. Louis.

Circuit Judge Rex Burlison on Thursday turned down a request from a lawyer working on behalf of several media outlets. But Burlison says he will consider allowing audio and still photos.

Among other things, Burlison cited security concerns and the fact that the woman involved in the affair opposes video cameras in the courtroom.

Greitens faces trial starting May 14 on an invasion of privacy charge stemming from an extramarital affair in 2015, before he was elected. He's accused of taking a partially nude and unauthorized photo of the woman while she was bound and blindfolded in the basement of his home.

Mark Sableman, the attorney for the media organizations that include The Associated Press, says he is disappointed in the ruling, calling video an "anti-spin antidote."

9:30 a.m.

The Missouri House has spent at least $15,000 on court reporters to transcribe its work as it investigates allegations against Gov. Eric Greitens.

Records provided to The Associated Press under the state Sunshine Law cover the first month of work by a special investigatory committee, from early March to early April.

In addition to hiring court reporters, the records show the House had paid $240 to serve subpoenas to several witnesses.

The House committee has continued to work since then.

The panel released a report Wednesday indicating that Greitens used a donor list from a veterans' charity for his political campaign and then filed an Ethics Commission document falsely attributing its source to a campaign aide.

It also released a report last month related to alleged sexual misconduct by Greitens.

Copyright 2018 KFVS. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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