Missouri governor defiant after indictment linked to affair

Hawley expects ‘thorough’ House investigation in Gov. Eric Greitens indictment
Hawley expects ‘thorough’ House investigation in Gov. Eric Greitens indictment

25 February, 2018

"Given the way the governor's statement was crafted to note that this indictment was a partisan witch hunt, it actually cast some doubt on the veracity of the charges for some Republicans", she says.

A day after Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens was indicted, some in his party are calling for him to resign.

Ben Trachtenberg, an associate law professor at the University of Missouri, said it would be key to a successful prosecution.

"The people of Missouri deserve better than a reckless liberal prosecutor who uses her office to score political points", Greitens said in a statement Thursday. It alleges Greitens took a compromising photo of a woman without her consent during their affair in March 2015, before he was governor.

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Gardner, who grew up in St. Louis and earned a law degree from St. Louis University, made a decision to run for the job leading an office of about 60 prosecutors when Joyce opted not to seek a fifth term in 2016. The governor allegedly took a photo of his former mistress partially nude and threatened to make the picture public if she exposed their relationship. Some House members were circulating a petition calling for Greitens' resignation, but it was unclear who had signed.

Greitens was elected in November 2016, winning 51 percent of the vote to defeat former Attorney General Chris Koster.

"Kim Gardner has received more than $200,000 from George Soros groups", said Sam Cooper Executive Director of the Missouri Republican Party. It involves a photo allegedly taken of a woman Greitens had an affair with in 2015.

Susan Ryan, the prosecutor's spokeswoman, says Greitens' legal team requested a "secret" meeting involving only attorneys to share what they called the "human" side of Greitens' story.

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He did, however, today step down from a leadership role in the Republican Governors Association.

The number of lawmakers demanding that Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens resign is growing following his indictment stemming from an extramarital affair. Republican Senator Caleb Rowden, of Columbia, and Republican Representative Kevin Corlew, of Kansas City, have both come out to ask that Greiteins step down for the "sake of our state", Rowden said, because he can no longer "effectively perform the duties of his office", according to Corlew.

An indictment released Thursday charges the Republican governor with felony invasion of privacy.

Greitens has repeatedly denied blackmailing the woman. The governor's lawyers said that he violated no laws and that they were seeking to have the case dismissed. He was later released on a personal recognizance bond.

On Thursday, Greitens was indicted on a felony invasion of privacy charge. Greitens has admitted to the affair but denies any crime was committed.

In January, a Poplar Bluff lawmaker called for an investigation into Greitens in light of the allegations against him.

Greitens' charity, The Mission Continues, faced scrutiny during the campaign when Democrats accused him of insider politics for accessing the donor list to raise about $2 million through its top contributors.

In response, Gardner's office said, "Despite the Governor's personal attacks, the Circuit Attorney believes the courtroom is the appropriate place to argue the facts, not the media".

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