Marshall Griffin

Statehouse Reporter

Missouri Public Radio State House Reporter Marshall Griffin is a proud alumnus of the University of Mississippi (a.k.a., Ole Miss), and has been in radio for over 20 years, starting out as a deejay. His big break in news came when the first President Bush ordered the invasion of Panama in 1989. Marshall was working the graveyard shift at a rock station, and began ripping news bulletins off the old AP teletype and reading updates between songs. From there on, his radio career turned toward news reporting and anchoring. In 1999, he became the capital bureau chief for Florida's Radio Networks, and in 2003 he became News Director at WFSU-FM/Florida Public Radio. During his time in Tallahassee he covered seven legislative sessions, Governor Jeb Bush's administration, four hurricanes, the Terri Schiavo saga, and the 2000 presidential recount. Before coming to Missouri, he enjoyed a brief stint in the Blue Ridge Mountains, reporting and anchoring for WWNC-AM in Asheville, North Carolina. Marshall lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Julie, their dogs, Max and Mason, and their cat, Honey.

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One of the lawyers who represented former Gov. Eric Greitens before a state House committee investigating his conduct says the state’s rejection of their bills sets a “terrible precedent.”

“If it works this time, then the next time there’s some sort of politically controversial engagement, you’ll have the same thing happen again,” said Kansas City attorney Ed Greim. “We’re going to have to have officeholders who have deep pockets, because they’re going to have to personally pay for state government work.”

The chairman of a Missouri House committee that investigated former Gov. Eric Greitens doesn’t want the state to pay for his lawyers.

Greitens hired attorneys Ed Greim and Ross Garber to represent him in his official capacity as governor. When questioned under oath by the House investigative committee last month, the two confirmed that they were billing the state for their services – Greim was billing the state $340 an hour, while Garber was billing $320 an hour.

The Missouri House committee that's been investigating former Gov. Eric Greitens has done an about-face.

A motion was filed by the House Special Investigative Committee on Oversight late Wednesday to drop its lawsuit seeking records from A New Missouri and Greitens for Missouri.

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson is nearly a week into his new job and is still hosting private meetings with city and state officials – while taking a few minutes to brief the media on those gatherings at least once a day.

Wednesday’s meetings included one with St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson and St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger. Before the meeting, Krewson told reporters she didn’t have any immediate requests for the new governor.

Gov. Mike Parson met Tuesday with several mayors from across Missouri, including Florissant and St. Peters, as part of the transition into his new job.

He called it the first in a series of meetings with mayors, in which he said he wants his office to provide whatever help or assistance cities and towns may need.

Updated at 9:54 p.m. with the hiring of Parson's chief of staff - Mike Parson kicked off his first full week as Missouri’s governor by meeting with the state’s cabinet members, all chosen by his predecessor, Eric Greitens.

The meeting was held Monday in private, inside the governor’s office, but Parson did briefly meet with reporters beforehand. He said he has no intention of replacing any of Greitens’ chosen agency heads.

Today was the actual last day of Missouri’s 2018 legislative session, as the heads of the House and Senate each placed their signatures on every bill that’s headed to the governor’s office.

But it’s unknown which governor will be signing them.

Update 11:20 p.m. with statement from Michelle Nasser -- Rep. Jay Barnes has thrown down the gauntlet, as has the rest of the Missouri House committee investigating Gov. Eric Greitens.

The Republican committee chairman announced Friday that they’ve issued a subpoena for the governor to appear and testify under oath on June 4.

Updated at 8:15 p.m. with comments from the House committee's attorney.

The attorney representing the ex-husband of the woman with whom Gov. Eric Greitens had an affair made an explosive appearance Thursday before the Missouri House committee investigating the governor’s conduct.

St. Louis attorney Al Watkins contradicted testimony given on Wednesday by Missouri Times publisher Scott Faughn.

Faughn said the $120,000 he gave to Watkins in January was his own money. But as Watkins has told St. Louis Public Radio and other media outlets, he said that Faughn told him the money came from a disgruntled political donor.

(Updated at 10:22 p.m. May 18 with the latest on the special session.)

Missouri’s special legislative session to consider whether to impeach Gov. Eric Greitens has officially begun, but so far nothing much has happened.

House and Senate members briefly opened the session Friday to make a few motions, then adjourned until Tuesday to hold technical sessions, which last a couple of minutes and only require two or three lawmakers per chamber. But the committee that’s been investigating Greitens is meeting twice next week.

The committee investigating Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens released two emails this morning, one that suggests he might have tried to hide some campaign donations.

However, Greitens’ use of outside groups to not identify some donors has been known publicly for at least two years. He previously had defended the practice as necessary to protect donors.

The chairman of the Missouri House committee that’s investigating Gov. Eric Greitens said Monday they’re getting pushback from the governor’s camp.

Rep. Jay Barnes, R-Jefferson City, told reporters that they’ve issued a subpoena to Greitens’ advisor Austin Chambers, and to the groups Greitens for Missouri and A New Missouri, via attorney Catherine Hanaway. He said the groups have provided some documents but are refusing to provide others.

A new front has opened up in the battle over whether Missouri should become a right-to-work state.

Under right-to-work, unions and employers would be barred from requiring all workers within a bargaining unit to pay dues or fees. On Friday, the Missouri House passed a measure that would ingrain right-to-work in the state constitution.

Despite distractions and conflict over Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens legal troubles, Missouri lawmakers were able to send him next year’s state budget two days before the mandatory 6 p.m. Friday deadline.

The spending plan for fiscal year 2019, which begins July 1, increases K-12 education funding by more than $98 million. The increase means public schools will be fully funded under the scaled-back definition that became law two years ago.

One of the bigger obstacles to passing this year’s state budget has been resolved.

Missouri’s public school system is set to get a $98 million boost in next year’s state budget, which was what House leaders wanted, under an agreement reached Monday.

Opponents of current ethics laws that allow unlimited gifts from lobbyists to lawmakers on Thursday delivered dozens of boxes of signatures to Jefferson City to change the state’s constitution.

The proposed amendment is sponsored by the group Clean Missouri. It includes limiting lobbyist gifts to $5 in value, expanding the waiting period for former elected officials to become lobbyists from six months to two years, and lowering caps on donations to state House and Senate candidates.

Legislation that would legalize marijuana for medical use in Missouri passed the state House on Tuesday.

The bill originally would have only allowed medical marijuana use for terminally ill patients, but the House added amendments last week to expand access to those with chronic and debilitating, but not necessarily fatal, illnesses.

There are only three weeks left in Missouri’s 2018 legislative session.

Lawmakers are continuing to work on major legislation, including the fiscal year 2019 state budget. But they still have to figure out how much to spend on public schools.

(Updated 2 p.m. Friday, April 27) A Cole County judge has rejected Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens’ request for a restraining order to prevent Attorney General Josh Hawley from being involved in any case against the embattled governor.

The judge's decision, issued Friday, means that the attorney general can continue investigating the governor. Hawley's staff has sent over some information to St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner, who is overseeing the criminal case filed in St. Louis and set to go to trial May 14.

The Missouri House committee investigating Governor Eric Greitens has beefed up its staff.

A spokesman for committee chairman Jay Barnes, R-Jefferson City, said former State Supreme Court Chief Justice Edward “Chip” Robertson, Jr., and Sedalia attorney Mark Kempton will serve as special counsel to the committee as it continues its investigation.

A Missouri Senate committee that handles appointments by the governor has unanimously approved Bill Burkes of Joplin to fill one of the vacancies on the state Ethics Commission.

But he’ll have to wait awhile for the full Senate to confirm him. That’s because Senate President Pro-tem Ron Richard, R-Joplin, wants to keep a 50-50 balance of Democrats and Republicans on the commission.

A House committee has passed a measure that would change the date voters would decide on whether to make Missouri a right-to-work state.

House Committee Resolution 102 would move the right-to-work referendum from the November general election to the August primary, which traditionally draws fewer voters. It’s sponsored by Rep. Holly Rehder, R-Sikeston.

File photo | Tim Bommel | House Communications

Updated at 10 p.m. April 23 with Burns saying he won't resign—The top leaders of the Missouri Democratic Party are calling for a south St. Louis County lawmaker to resign after he praised a radio host who commonly makes racist and misogynist remarks.

At issue are state Rep. Bob Burns’ calls into a radio show hosted by Bob Romanik, a Metro East political figure. He’s often said things on his show that are derogatory to African-Americans and women.

File photo | Bill Greenblatt | UPI

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is still getting some legislative support, despite being charged on Friday with illegally obtaining a list of donors from a charity he founded years ago.

Rep. Diane Franklin, R-Camdenton, who represents portions of Fort Leonard Wood and the Lake of the Ozarks area, said the people she’s talked to in her district think Greitens is doing a good job as governor.

“I guess there’s maybe a rural and city divide on a lot of issues, and this is one of them,” she said. “The folks that I represent – as I’m out and about in the rural area – that’s how they feel about it.”

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is still getting support from some legislators, despite being charged on Friday with illegally obtaining a list of donors from a charity he founded years ago.

Rep. Diane Franklin, R-Camdenton, who represents portions of Fort Leonard Wood and the Lake of the Ozarks area, said the people she’s talked to in her district think Greitens is doing a good job as governor.

With four weeks left in the legislative session, Missouri lawmakers are running out of time to pass bills while keeping

Any remaining support Gov. Eric Greitens may have had from the Missouri legislature’s top Republican leaders is now gone.

Both House Speaker Todd Richardson, R-Poplar Bluff, and Senate President Pro-tem Ron Richard, R-Joplin, say it’s time for Greitens to step down.

Missouri House and Senate members were able to get some work done this week, despite the time and attention paid to the report that came out Wednesday on Gov. Eric Greitens.

Among the measures passed by the Missouri Senate is a proposed constitutional amendment to change term limits for members of the legislature, allowing them to serve up to 16 years in any one chamber or to divide that time between the House and Senate. Currently they can only serve up to eight years in each chamber.

Office of Missouri House of Representatives, file photos | St. Louis Public Radio

The Missouri House committee investigating Gov. Eric Greitens now has more time to do so.

The deadline for the committee to wrap up its investigation and recommend action has been extended to May 18. That’s four days after the Republican governor’s trial for invasion of privacy is set to begin, and the last day of the 2018 legislative session.

Despite the extension, the committee will still issue a report this week, Rep. Gina Mitten, D-Richmond Heights, a member of the Special Investigative Committee on Oversight, said Monday.

The Missouri House committee investigating Gov. Eric Greitens now has more time to do so.

The deadline for the committee to wrap up its investigation and recommend action has been extended to May 18. That’s four days after the Republican governor’s trial for invasion of privacy is set to begin, and the last day of the 2018 legislative session.

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