Tags

, , , , ,

Previously:

HR 380: impeaching Governor Jay Nixon (D) because of teh gay thing (February 6, 2014)

The latest impeachment bill aimed at Governor Jay Nixon, filed today:

SECOND REGULAR SESSION

House Resolution No. 476

97TH GENERAL ASSEMBLY

INTRODUCED BY REPRESENTATIVES MOON (Sponsor), BRATTIN, MUNTZEL, WILSON, POGUE, MARSHALL, HURST, BAHR AND NEELY (Co-sponsors).

5835L.01I

           WHEREAS, when the Second Regular Session of the Ninety-seventh General Assembly convened on January 8, 2014, there were three vacancies in the House of Representatives, and one vacancy in the Senate; and

           WHEREAS, as a result of those four vacancies, approximately 285,000 Missourians are without representation in the Missouri House or Senate; and

           WHEREAS, the 120th House District seat has been vacant since June 5, 2013, with an election date to fill this vacancy recently being called for August 5, 2014. At the time of this election, the 120th House District seat will have been vacant for 430 days; and

           WHEREAS, the 67th House District seat has been vacant since December 2, 2013, with an election date to fill this vacancy recently being called for August 5, 2014. At the time of this election, the 67th House District seat will have been vacant for 246 days; and

           WHEREAS, the 151st House District seat has been vacant since December 18, 2013, with an election date to fill this vacancy recently being called for August 5, 2014. At the time of this election, the 151st House District seat will have been vacant for 230 days; and

           WHEREAS, the 22nd Senate District seat has been vacant since December 18, 2013, with no special election date having been called to fill this vacancy; and

          WHEREAS, on January 2, 2014, a lawsuit was filed in Cole County on behalf of ten people from various House and Senate Districts, stating that Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon has been remiss in his duties as Governor by not setting dates for special elections to fill the four vacant seats; and

           WHEREAS, Article I, Sections 1 and 2 of the Missouri Constitution state foundational principles of Missouri’s form of government:

“Section 1. That all political power is vested in and derived from the people; that all government of right originates from the people, is founded upon their will only, and is instituted solely for the good of the whole.”

“Section 2. That all constitutional government is intended to promote the general welfare of the people; that all persons have a natural right to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and the enjoyment of the gains of their own industry; that all persons are created equal and are entitled to equal rights and opportunity under the law; that to give security to these things is the principal office of government, and that when government does not confer this security, it fails in its chief design.”; and

           WHEREAS, Article I, Section 25 of the Missouri Constitution expressly acknowledges that Missouri citizens have the right of suffrage:

“Section 25. That all elections shall be free and open; and no power, civil or military, shall at any time interfere to prevent the free exercise of the right of suffrage.”; and

           WHEREAS, a representative voice in each house of the Missouri General Assembly is part and parcel of the constitutional right of suffrage. Any delay in securing the citizens’ right of representation in the state legislature should be subject to strict scrutiny by our courts; and

           WHEREAS, Article III, Section 14 of the Missouri Constitution requires the Governor, leaving no discretion with the Governor, to issue writs of election to fill vacancies in the Missouri General Assembly:

“Section 14. Writs of election to fill vacancies in either house of the general assembly shall be issued by the governor.”; and

           WHEREAS, Section 21.110, RSMo, also requires the Governor to issue writs of election:

“21.110. If the governor receives any resignation or notice of vacancy, or if he is satisfied of the death of any member of either house, during the recess, he shall, without delay, issue a writ of election to supply the vacancy.”; and

           WHEREAS, in addition to the April municipal general election, the August primary election, and the November general election, Section 115.123, RSMo, permits special elections to fill vacancies to be held on any Tuesday; and

           WHEREAS, since 2005, elections have been held in February, April, June, August, September, and November; and

           WHEREAS, Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon has refused to set elections to coincide with the earliest possible scheduled election after each vacancy occurred, thereby infringing on the constitutional rights held by not only the 285,000 Missouri citizens who reside in the affected districts, but all Missouri citizens who rely on full representation in the state legislature for all our citizens in order to fairly engage in the people’s business; and

          WHEREAS, the relevant constitutional and statutory provisions make it clear that a governor has no authority to deny or unreasonably interfere, as Governor Nixon has, with the citizens’ right to legislative representation; and

           WHEREAS, Article IV, Section 2 of the Missouri Constitution states:

“The governor shall take care that the laws are distributed and faithfully executed, and shall be a conservator of the peace throughout the state.”; and

           WHEREAS, in knowingly failing to issue writs of election “without delay” as required under Section 21.110, RSMo, when numerous election dates were possible, Governor Nixon has not only violated state statutory law, but has also violated the Missouri Constitution by not taking “care that laws are distributed and faithfully executed” as required under Article IV, Section 2; and

           WHEREAS, most importantly, Governor Nixon’s knowing failure to issue writs of election “without delay” unlawfully prolonged the period of time in which 285,000 Missourians will be deprived of one of their most basic rights as citizens, their right to have representation in their government; and

           WHEREAS, Article VII, Section 1 of the Missouri Constitution states:

“All elective executive officials of the state, and judges of the supreme court, courts of appeals and circuit courts shall be liable to impeachment for crimes, misconduct, habitual drunkenness, willful neglect of duty, corruption in office, incompetency, or any offense involving moral turpitude or oppression in office.”; and

           WHEREAS, with blatant and knowing disregard for the basic right of the citizens of this state to be represented in their state legislature, Governor Nixon’s breach of his constitutional duties to faithfully execute the laws of this state by knowingly failing to issue writs of elections “without delay” as required by law when numerous election dates were possible is grounds for impeachment as willful neglect of duty and misconduct in office; and

           WHEREAS, Article VII, Section 2 of the Missouri Constitution vests the sole power of impeachment in the House of Representatives:

           NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Missouri House of Representatives, Ninety-seventh General Assembly, finds, charges, and presents that Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon, while so acting as the Governor of the State of Missouri, failed to issue writs of election for four vacancies in the Missouri General Assembly “without delay” as required by law when numerous election dates were possible, constituting an act which is an impeachable act under Article VII, Section 1 of the Missouri Constitution, and that by doing such aforesaid act Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon was and is guilty of the commission of willful neglect of duty and misconduct in office; and

           BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Missouri House of Representatives adopts the following:

ARTICLES OF IMPEACHMENT

ARTICLE I

           That the Missouri House of Representatives under the authority of Article VII, Section 2 of the Missouri Constitution does find, charge, and present that Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon, while so acting as the Governor of the State of Missouri, contrary to the standards of conduct prescribed for an elected executive official of the state, committed an act impeachable under Article VII, Section 1 of the Missouri Constitution, in that, Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon knowingly failed to issue writs of election for four vacancies in the Missouri General Assembly “without delay” as required under Section 21.110, RSMo, when numerous election dates were possible.

           That by the doing of the aforesaid act, Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon was and is guilty of willful neglect of duty and misconduct in office, an impeachable offense under Article VII, Section 1 of the Missouri Constitution, and that such act has shaken the faith and confidence of the citizens of the State of Missouri in their ability to have faith in their elected public officials, and has breached the public trust that the laws of this state will be faithfully executed.

ARTICLE II

           That the Missouri House of Representatives under the authority of Article VII, Section 2 of the Missouri Constitution does find, charge, and present that Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon, while so acting as the Governor of the State of Missouri, contrary to the standards of conduct prescribed for an elected executive official of the state, committed an act impeachable under Article VII, Section 1 of the Missouri Constitution, in that, Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon, in knowingly failing to issue such writs of election, deprived approximately 285,000 Missouri citizens of their basic right to representation in their government.

           That by the doing of the aforesaid act, Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon was and is guilty of willful neglect of duty and misconduct in office, an impeachable offense under Article VII, Section 1 of the Missouri Constitution, and that such act has shaken the faith and confidence of the citizens of the State of Missouri in their ability to have faith in their elected public officials, and has breached the public trust that the laws of this state will be faithfully executed.”; and

           BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that upon impeachment by the House of Representatives, Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon shall stand trial before a special commission of seven eminent jurists to be elected by the Missouri Senate in accordance with Article VII, Section 2 of the Missouri Constitution for willful neglect of duty and misconduct in office; and

           BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Chief Clerk of the Missouri House of Representatives be instructed to prepare properly inscribed copies of this resolution for Governor Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon, the Missouri Supreme Court, and the Missouri Senate.

[emphasis in original]

Oh, please, do proceed.

If the special election to replace a gay member of the General Assembly who resigned and had also filed a joint state tax return was not quickly scheduled by the Governor would the two sets of articles of impeachment cancel out? Just asking.