Representative Nick Marshall (R-Parkville) filed 2 articles against Nixon, accusing him of misleading Missourians and violating the state Constitution when he instructed the Missouri Department of Revenue to accept joint tax returns filed by same-sex couples legally married in other states.
In an e-mail, Press Secretary Scott Holste dismisses the filing, calling it a ”publicity stunt.”
Holste writes, “The Governor will continue to focus on the issues that matter to Missouri families: quality schools for our kids, good jobs in our communities and health care for working Missourians.”
The Minority Leader in the House, Representative Jake Hummel (D-St. Louis) called the articles of impeachment “bogus.”
In a statement, Hummel says the filing is, “further proof, as if any was needed, that the crazy wing has taken over the House Republican Caucus. There are many serious issues facing Missouri that will require serious people to solve. These aren’t serious people.
“If House Republicans insist on embarassing themselves with sham election-year proceedings, then, by all means, they should have at it,” writes Hummel. “When Missouri voters see how far down the path of extremism House Republicans have gone, there will be a lot fewer of them serving in the House of Representatives come November.”
House Speaker Tim Jones (R-Eureka) was asked in a conference with Capitol reporters about the issues raised by Marshall and Representative Mike Moon (R-Ash Grove), who has said he plans to file multiple articles of impeachment against Nixon alleging he hasn’t acted quickly enough in calling special elections to fill vacant House seats, and for not having called one to fill a vacant seat in the Senate.
Jones tells reporters, “They’re very serious charges, however the governor has made some very serious actions.”
“Impeachment is also a very serious remedy,” Jones continued. “I think we’re going to look at past history in the House … we’re going to back and examine that process … and move forward cautiously from there.”
Representative Mike Colona (D-St. Louis) says he doesn’t think there is any legal question about the executive order filed by the governor regarding same-sex joint state tax filings.
Colona thinks the legislature is not the place to bring up the issues Marshall seeks to raise.
“I’m from St. Louis,” Colona asserts, “and we might have a few things going on here like, oh I don’t know, a school transfer issue, a school district that’s about to go bankrupt, we’ve had two public health clinics closed because we haven’t expanded Medicaid, yet we’re supposed to take the time to do something like this in the General Assembly?
“If Representative Marshall thinks that this is truly an issue where the Governor has overstepped his bounds, then the true forum for this should be the courts, not in an impeachment hearing in the General Assembly.”
Colona, who is openly gay, says he doesn’t feel personally slighted by the actions of his fellow lawmaker, Marshall.
“I don’t feel as if I’m being personally attacked. Representative Marshall is an attorney, he’s a prosecutor and to use the vernacular language, he doesn’t pull any cheap shots. I don’t think he holds any animosity toward the LGBT community.”
Colona calls the situation an opportunity for education, particularly if the issue reaches the House Floor, but he questions whether it will go that far.
Listen to the interview with Mike Colona: 9:59