Mo. Lawmaker Calls For Gov. Nixon's Impeachment Over Same-Sex Tax Filings

By Matt Lupoli |

Published 02/09 2014 10:24PM

Updated 02/10 2014 04:52AM

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- A Missouri lawmaker moved to impeach Gov. Jay Nixon this week, after the governor issued an order regarding same-sex tax filings.

House Rep. Nick Marshall filed a resolution to impeach Nixon over his order to accept taxes for legally married same-sex couples filed jointly. Marshall called the order a violation of the state's constitution. 

"Most people, even if they're in a same-sex relationship in Missouri, it doesn't apply to them because if they lived in Missouri the whole time, and they weren't legally married somewhere else, it doesn't cover them," Missouri State University professor Brian Calfano said. 

Calfano, who teaches political science, says the governor's order in no way changes Missouri's constitution, which does not allow same-sex marriages. The order only applies to couples who move to Missouri from other states that do marry same-sex couples. 

"If you have a contractual obligation in one state, other states have to recognize that, and that would include marriage," Calfano said. 

In his filing, Marshall calls the governor's order "willful neglect."

"Is this something we should be focusing on, given the economic issues and funding issues for education and other issues in the state? I think for most people, including many conservatives and Republicans, the answer is no," Calfano said. 

Since Missouri's tax code is closely tied to the federal tax code, Calfano points out that challenging it could pose potential problems for the state.

"This would've been a lawsuit," Calfano said. "Given that there has been enormous shifting on the federal level, in reality, state governors are caught in the middle."

That shift continued just recently when Attorney General Eric Holder announced the Justice Department will extend lawful same-sex marriages equal protection under federal law. 

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