Cleaver’s Lawyers Ask for More Time on Car Wash Suit
February 21, 2013

KC Star:
Lawyers for Rep. Emanuel Cleaver’s company have asked for more time to respond to a request that the firm be ordered to pay $1.6 million on a delinquent car loan.

In January, Bank of America asked a judge to order the immediate payment on the loan, which the company obtained for a car wash in Grandview. Cleaver’s lawyers were to have responded by Tuesday.

But in a motion filed with the court, the lawyers said they have been unable to discuss the case with their clients “due to scheduling matters related to their employment.” That could refer to Cleaver, who often travels to Washington for congressional business, but it may refer as well to Dianne Cleaver, who is a defendant in the case.

No word on whether the judge has granted the motion, which the Bank of America lawyers oppose.

The trial is still set for April 17.

Bank of America Demands Immediate Payment of Cleaver Car Wash Loan
January 18, 2013

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Bank of America has asked a Jackson County judge to order Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, his wife and their company to immediately repay a 2002 loan they received to buy a car wash in the Kansas City suburb of Grandview.

The Kansas City Star reports the bank’s attorneys filed a motion Thursday saying the facts of the case are undisputed, so the lender should immediately recover $1.61 million in outstanding debt, late fees, interest and costs.

When Bank of America sued the Cleavers’ company in March, it said the congressman owed about $1.5 million. Thursday’s filing says that amount has grown by nearly $86,000 because payments still aren’t being made.

The Missouri Democrat’s congressional office says the motion is a personal business matter and another step in the legal process.

Cleaver Asks for Car Wash Suit to be Dismissed
October 2, 2012

KC Star:
Lawyers for U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver’s company have asked a Jackson County judge to dismiss a Bank of America lawsuit that seeks repayment of more than $1.3 million loaned to the company to buy a Grandview car wash.
In papers filed late Monday, lawyers for The Cleaver Co. LLC said the company admits taking out the loan but denies all other allegations in the case. It also stated that the bank hasn’t presented sufficient facts to warrant a decision in its favor.
The filing asked Judge Charles McKenzie to dismiss the case and award legal costs to the company, which is owned by the congressman and his wife.
Bank of America sued The Cleaver Co. LLC in March, claiming default on the loan the Cleavers used to buy the car wash and demanding repayment. The bank also asked the court to appoint a receiver for the car wash, but the judge denied the request earlier this year.
With penalties and interest, the bank said, the debt has now reached more than $1.5 million.
The loan is 75 percent backed by the Small Business Administration. If the loan goes into full default, the SBA and taxpayers could be responsible for more than $1 million in repayments to the lender.
Cleaver, a Democrat, has blamed the car wash’s problems on a “business dispute.” The Monday filing, however, does not contain details of any dispute.

Read more here:

Cleaver Says Voting is Under Attack
September 26, 2012

The Kansas City Congressman who leads the Congressional Black Caucus says the American voting public has come under attack. Congressman Emanuel Cleaver says African Americans were naive to think there would not be a backlash from the 2008 election in which the Latino and Black turnout was the highest ever, and the percentage of African Americans who voted matched the percentage of white voter turnout.
He says those who worked so hard forty years ago never would have predicted that African Americans would be fighting efforts to suppress or to discourage minority voting power. “We’ve had 176 restricted bills regarding voting that have been proposed in 41 states…Understand that we cannot even find an instance of voter fraud. In the last twenty-some years the Justice Department has investigated, like, two. Why should there be such an effort to deter black voting power?” he asked the caucus’ annual legislative conference. .
Cleaver says he’s heard an estimate that “block the vote” efforts, such as the voter photo-ID bills proposed in Missouri, could keep five million African Americans from voting–enough to alter the outcomes of elections nationwide.
The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation is launching a nationwide voter registration drive this week that will put special focus on areas represented by black members of Congress.

Cleaver Introduces Trayvon Martin Resolution
April 5, 2012

KC Star:

U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver has introduced a House resolution condemning “vigilante justice” in the killing of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, and urging states to repeal so-called Stand Your Ground laws.
Martin was shot and killed in an altercation with George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer. Zimmerman remains free in part because Florida authorities determined he acted in self-defense, a decision that has prompted scores of demonstrations and further investigations.
Cleaver, a Kansas City Democrat, is chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus.
The resolution — co-sponsored by three Florida House members — accuses Zimmerman of “racial bias” in the shooting.
In a news release, the former Kansas City mayor criticized the Stand Your Ground concept, which generally allows citizens to legally defend themselves without a requirement to retreat.
“It is imperative that we shine a light on this controversial, dangerous, and sometimes deadly law that has been adopted in over 20 states, to protect our communities, and the integrity of our nation’s legal system,” Cleaver said in the statement.
But Kevin Jamison, a lawyer and board member with the Western Missouri Shooters Alliance, accused Cleaver of political posturing.
“He obviously doesn’t understand what Stand Your Ground law means,” Jamison said. “It does not mean shoot everybody you’re scared of. It is not a big change from traditional self-defense grounds.”

Read more here: