My Perspective on Several Issues in the State Capitol
Several issues have occurred at the State Capitol this week, which need to be promptly addressed. First, a threat was made against a senator at the State Capitol. The second issue surrounds my call for the governor to resign, and for the House to move forward with the impeachment process as soon as possible.
First and foremost, I want all visitors to know, our State Capitol is still a safe place to visit. The first responders, firefighters and law enforcement officials did a magnificent job of quickly responding to the situation. They also were able to quickly determine the package delivered was not of a harmful nature. My fellow colleagues and I held an emergency committee meeting, directing staff to develop proper protocol to lower the risk of this ever happening again. Our State Capitol is still one of the greatest places to visit, and it is also safe and secure.
Secondly, this week I called on the governor to resign from office. If he does not resign, I urge the Missouri House of Representatives to move forward with the impeachment process. Earlier this week, the attorney general, our state’s chief law enforcement officer, stated he believed enough evidence existed to charge the governor with a felony crime for actions that allegedly took place during his campaign. I have full confidence in the attorney general and in his ability to thoroughly investigate and understand the laws surrounding this situation. I fully support the attorney general’s decision to move forward on this issue.
Below are my statements on these issues:
On Wednesday, April 18, an unknown substance was delivered in an envelope to a senator’s office. The envelope with the substance then came in contact with several staff members, and authorities were promptly called to investigate the issue. At this moment, law enforcement believes the substance poses no threat to the public. However, authorities are taking extreme caution with the situation and are working to ensure the State Capitol remains safe for all visitors.
“I wish to thank local first responders and members of law enforcement for their quick reaction to the issue. Early analysis indicates the substance is not harmful and does not present a threat to anyone in the building; however, I am extremely thankful that they continue to monitor the situation in order to guarantee our protection and safety.”
Situation Surrounding the Governor
“For the last several months, I have been in constant contact with the speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives and the Missouri attorney general. We have reached a critical turning point in the allegations made against the governor. The decisions made going forward will have a significant effect on the state of Missouri. After speaking with the attorney general, I believe the governor has no other respectable option than to resign from office.
“We are past the point of concerning and alarming. Since his time in office, the governor has caused tension, conflict and hostility. The weight of his actions are being felt throughout the state. Now, these alleged illegal actions are further harmful to the people of Missouri and do not represent Missouri values. It’s time for the governor to find the courage in his heart and do what is in the best interests of the people he serves and step aside.
“This is not a sentiment held lightly. Serving the people of Missouri is an extraordinary honor, one I believe requires each elected official to rise to the occasion. Sometimes that occasion is knowing when it’s time to step aside.
“Because of the severity of the allegations, it is my wish that we immediately start impeachment proceedings.”
I always appreciate hearing your comments, opinions and concerns. Please feel free to contact me in Jefferson City at (573) 751-2173. You may write to me at Senator Ron Richard, Missouri Senate, State Capitol, 201 W. Capitol Ave., Rm. 326, Jefferson City, MO 65101; email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit me on the Web at www.senate.mo.gov/richard.