3 Impeachment Articles Against Nixon in House Committee
March 31, 2014

(AP) – Three articles of impeachment against Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon are now in a state House committee.

Republican lawmakers have raised several complaints against the Democratic governor.

One article seeks to impeach Nixon over an executive order directing state tax officials to accept joint returns from same-sex couples who married legally in other states.

Another asserts Nixon did not move fast enough to call special elections for vacant legislative seats. The third complains there was insufficient punishment of officials involved in a dispute over the handling of concealed gun permits.

The articles of impeachment have been referred to the House Judiciary Committee

MissouriHouse Votes to Triple Waiting Time for Abortion
March 12, 2014

(AP) — Missouri would become the third state to make women wait three days to have an abortion after seeing a doctor under legislation passed by the state House on Tuesday.

The bill would triple Missouri’s current 24-hour waiting period and put the state in line with Utah and South Dakota as the only states to mandate a 72-hour time frame. The Missouri House vote came hours after a few hundred anti-abortion advocates rallied at the state Capitol in support of the measure.

“If you are going to make a decision about life or death, shouldn’t it take more than three days to think about it?” House Speaker Tim Jones, R-Eureka, asked at the rally in the Capitol rotunda.

But opponents said the bill is an affront to women and would push them further into pregnancies before an abortion, which can increase risk.

“Having politicians force women to further delay when they have abortions is wrong and it will force women to undergo more complicated abortion procedures,” said Paula Gianino, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri.

The Missouri House voted 115-39 to send the bill to the state Senate. Nine Democrats joined Republicans in supporting the bill. The final vote tally is six more than would be needed to override a veto from Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon.

Nixon has previously allowed other abortion restrictions to become law without his signature, including a measure last year that requires doctors to be in the room for the initial dose of a drug used in medical abortions. At a Monday news conference, Nixon said only that he would thoroughly review the waiting period bill.

March 15, 2016 Missouri Primary Bill Clears House
March 12, 2014

(AP) — Missouri would hold its 2016 presidential primaries on March 15 of that year under legislation advanced by the state House.

The elections are currently scheduled for February 2016, but the bill’s supporters said Monday that keeping that date could cause Missouri to lose delegates to the national party conventions.

National party rules allow only certain states to hold primaries before the March 15 date.

Sponsoring Rep. Tony Dugger, a Hartville Republican, says moving the elections would avoid a repeat of 2012, when Missouri held a non-binding presidential primary. Faced with losing delegates, state Republican officials decided that year to select convention representatives with a caucus system held after the primaries.

The measure needs one more House vote before moving to the Senate

Mo. House Passes ‘ Medical Conscience’ Bill
February 12, 2014

(AP) – Missouri health care workers could refuse to partake in certain medical procedures that violate their ethical or religious beliefs under legislation endorsed by the Missouri House on Wednesday.

The House voted 116-38 to give first-round approval to the bill, which is sponsored by Republican House Speaker Tim Jones. He said the measure would protect workers from having to engage in procedures that conflict with their beliefs, while also protecting patients.

“This is good for patients in making sure they don’t have people involved in their procedures making second guesses because of their religious beliefs,” said Jones, of Eureka.

Republican Rep. Keith Frederick, an orthopedic surgeon from Rolla, agreed and said it was important that medical personnel are engaged with the patient rather than worrying about religious conflicts.

The measure would apply to procedures such as those involving abortion-inducing drugs, artificial insemination and the withdrawal of nutrition and hydration. It would also let workers opt out of procedures involving cloning and embryonic stem cell research. Religiously-affiliated hospitals would be shielded from liability for refusing to provide medical procedures that conflict with their religious beliefs.

It would require health care workers to give “reasonable” notice to their employers if they are going to opt out of a procedure. Health personnel also could not be fired or demoted for refusing to participate in an operation. The legislation would not permit workers to withhold emergency treatments that could save a patient’s life.

Boeing. Special Session Costs about $90K
December 9, 2013

(AP) – A special legislative session to approve incentives for a Boeing airplane facility cost Missouri taxpayers a little less than $100,000.

The Legislature wrapped up a five-day special session last week after passing a bill authorizing up to $1.7 billion of tax breaks over two decades if Boeing chooses to assemble a new passenger plane in the St. Louis area.

The House clerk’s office said the special session cost about $75,000 for members’ travel and daily living allowances and extra operational costs such as printing.

The Senate administrator’s office said the special session cost that chamber about $17,500.

Senate costs are routinely lower than those in the House, because the House has almost five times as many members.