Late Night Drives
Two sources – one Republican and one Democrat – tell me that the House is interested in the Post-Dispatch’s recent report on the governor taking a late-night drive without his security detail.
Pull Quote: “Police in the Warren County town of Truesdale pulled Gov. Eric Greitens over Friday night after they caught him speeding, the governor's spokesman told the Post-Dispatch. Greitens, a Republican, owns a vacation house in the resort community of Innsbrook, about 7 miles from Truesdale. Truesdale, with just over 700 residents, is about 60 miles west of St. Louis… Briden said the traffic stop occurred at 11 p.m. Friday. He said Greitens was traveling alone. Briden said Greitens was driving a personal car…”
There’s a question of how often the governor “slips” his security crew, and for what reason he would do that.
Continued Tussle over Lawyers on Public Payroll
Yesterday Michael Martinich-Sauter, general counsel for the attorney general, wrote a letter to Lucinda Luetkemeyer outlining why “the Office of the Governor and the Governor in his official capacity lack authority to retain private impeachment counsel without the consent of the General Assembly or the Attorney General.”
Hanaway Attacks Barnes
Catherine Hanaway, attorney for Greitens’ campaign, political nonprofit and staffers, issued a statement attempting to undermine the integrity of Rep. Jay Barnes. Perhaps fearful of the evidence that the Committee has compiled, the governor’s team has decided an attack on Barnes is their strongest play.
“We learned yesterday that Chairman Jay Barnes received the secret recordings from Scott Faughn well before any criminal charge was brought, and before he was appointed to chair this committee—yet he did not disclose this information.
We learned today that Chairman Barnes knew about cash payments from Scott Faughn to Al Watkins before the public or the committee knew—and he did not disclose this information.
Now, in a desperate attempt to divert attention from these omissions, Chairman Barnes revealed that he's been speaking with the FBI about what he believes are the facts of this case, well before his 'fact-finding' committee reached its conclusion. He's been talking to the FBI about alleged foreign donors to the campaign. That allegation is completely false, and it's based exclusively on the dubious testimony of a single witness. Neither Chairman Barnes nor that witness have provided any proof or evidence. And yet, Chairman Barnes--entrusted with the sacred responsibility of finding facts, not prosecuting a case-- shared information with law enforcement before a full review of the matter….”
It earned a rebuke from Republicans in various positions.
From Republican operative Michael Hafner: My testimony speaks for itself. I had direct conversations regarding foreign contributions with very high net worth individuals that Eric Greitens connected me with. It’s a fact, not “dubious testimony.”
From former Republican Sen. Ryan Silvey: When Catherine was US Atty, she came to speak to the R House Caucus. She lectured us on ethics & public corruption. She told us if approached by Feds to share EVERYTHING you know b/c obstruction was deadly serious. My how times have changed.
From Republican Sen. Mike Kehoe: “I read with great disgust the latest efforts of the PR firm representing the governor to influence members of the house. Personally, I find it insulting… I have known Jay Barnes longer than anyone in the General Assembly - and while we have disagreed on many policy issues, his character and integrity are above reproach. I have also watched Representative Barnes shoulder the burden of chairing this committee cautiously, prudently, and graciously…”
From Chip Robertson, Republican counsel to the House: “[T]he former Speaker wants to impugn the integrity of the committee and the chairman, who are some of the most respected members of the General Assembly… Rather than thanking Chairman Barnes for not using his possession of the tape to attack Mr. Greitens, he is now being accused of keeping quiet about the tape. Rather than expressing appreciation for Chairman Barnes for permitting his fellow Committee Members to make up their own minds in this matter as the evidence unfolded, the Chairman is being accused of withholding evidence that might have unduly influenced them in their own assessment of the sordid situation early in the process... And what cannot be denied is that Eric Greitens has yet to make any statement under oath denying any aspect of Witness #1’s testimony or any other evidence outlined in the Committees’ reports.
Yesterday Ms. Hanaway appeared in the Cole County Courthouse objecting to turning over documents. She surely knows that her objecting to turning over documents that would help the Committee conclude its work runs counter to her previous claims that her client intends to cooperate with the Committee. Ms. Hanaway surely knows that her coordinated efforts with Greitens’ criminal defense counsel raise the specter that she, not the Committee, is at the heart of a conspiracy to hide the truth.”
One of Them Must Be Wrong
Attorney Al Watkins contradicted substantial parts of Scott Faughn’s testimony. Some members of the House Investigative Committee raised the issue of perjury, SuperAttorney Chuck Hatfield offered the possibility that it’s a matter of different recollections.
Most substantially, Watkins said that Faughn told him the $100K cash came from a wealthy Republican. Faughn says that it was his own money. Watkins says that he didn’t sell Faughn the recordings, rather he gave out many copies for free. Faughn says the $100K was to buy the recordings.
There were lesser discrepancies as well. For example, Faughn says he never signed a confidentiality agreement; Watkins says he did.
From a lobbyist: The Greitens team will be highly motivated to expose his lies. It's a great way for them to shift the narrative. Then we'll be talking about the perjury case against Faughn.
Don’t Send Work Texts
The first-rate Jason Hancock reports that training “that Gov. Eric Greitens’ staff got on the state’s Sunshine Law didn’t mince words in regards to sending text messages on their government cellphones. Don’t do it. A PowerPoint presentation created by the lawyers in the governor’s office to train staff on the ins and outs of the state’s open records and record retention law included a page that made that point very clear…” See it here.
Pull Quote: “Why would anybody encourage people in a work environment not to use a work phone?” said Mark Pedroli, a St. Louis attorney suing the governor. “I'll tell you why: to evade oversight.”
Sluts and Nuts
St. Louis Public Radio reports on the common “sluts and nuts” defense to sexual allegations. See it here.
Pull Quote: The defense lawyer is trying to show that the conduct was welcomed, because of how you behave in your life, is the theory. … And the testimony, I mean, no matter what you do in your private life, it doesn't matter, right? You should not be sexually harassed at work. You should not be sexually assaulted. And so it's not relevant. It's not admissible. But it's a technique to yes, make the witness uncomfortable. … The "nuts" defense part of is it that you are mentally unstable and why should we believe anything you say. It’s a technique. It’s not illegal. I don’t think it’s effective, especially in front of a jury. I think people see it as bullying and get upset.
Republican reader: Good Day for Greitens? I don't think so. Any woman who listened to his lawyers humiliate KS was seeing red.
eMailbag on Mantovani
The Mantovani "momentum" email was optimistic in tone but the numbers conflict with the message of a surge. 31% of the electorate strongly supporting any local elected is a solid number. It doesn't include people leaning toward Stenger or who simply are likely to support him. If there is such a surge, why doesn't Mantovani mention his numbers even once in his press release? Further, saying that only 37% give Stenger a positive rating rather than pointing to his negatives (or touting Mantovani's numbers) says that probably another third of people are fine with how things are going but now overwhelmingly positive or negative. Finally, there have been two-three townships that have endorsed. To depict this as a groundswell of support is a stretch.
eMailbag on Senate 17
I’ve gotten 4 Corlew mail pieces and nothing from Arthur. We are long time perfect voters in the district so I’m not sure what list they are using…
I would push back a little on the notion Arthur is doing more than Corlew in SD17. I’ve heard from people who live up there and not one of them have seen an Arthur mailer yet, while getting a couple from Corlew…
Jack Bates formed a candidate committee (Jack Bates For State Representative) to run for House 143 as a Republican.
Kathy Hancock formed a candidate committee (Friends To Elect Kathy Hancock) to run for Montgomery County Clerk as a Republican.
Olympus Political Action Committee was formed. It appears to be for the benefit of Auditor candidate Saundra McDowell. Its treasurer is Linda Ragsdale.
Jane Dueker added Home Builders Association Of St. Louis And Eastern Missouri.
Kaetlin Lamberson deleted Kyna Iman LLC.
Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $50,000 from Citizens for Schatz.
Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $6,000 from Enterprise Holdings Inc. PAC.
Committee for a Healthy Community - $68,450 from American Heart Association.
Citizens for Kurt Bahr - $10,000 from Jennifer Bahr.
Property Casualty Insurers Association of America Political Account - $10,000 from American Family Mutual Insurance Co.
Mantovani For STL - $15,000 from Joseph Koenig.
Mantovani For STL - $20,000 from St. Louis Association of Realtors Political Action Committee.
Happy birthdays to Sen. Ed Emery, Rep. Rebecca Roeber, Tim Jones, Jason Hall, Amy Blouin, and Gus Wagner.
Sunday: Sen. Bob Dixon, KMOX’s Debbie Monterrey, Scott Leiendecker, and Becky Lohmann.
Monday: Rep. Elijah Haahr.
No Who Won the Week or Weekly Summary today, no poll this weekend, taking off Memorial Day (Monday)…. Unless I happen to “clean out the in-box” over coffee from MOScout rural outpost in Potosi in which case you might get some nuggets to scroll through while you barbeque. No promises, see you Tuesday…