Lawmakers: Nixon did not keep his promise
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Lawmakers: Nixon did not keep his promise

Date: May 6, 2015
By: Michael Lindquist
State Capitol Bureau

JEFFERSON CITY - Some lawmakers are saying Gov. Jay Nixon did not uphold a promise he made in his State of the State address in January. 

In the address, the governor promised to have more of a presence at the Capitol.

"Now, I’m willing to do my part," Gov. Nixon said. "Rumor has it that I don’t spend enough time on the third floor. I hear you ... and I’ll be coming around more often."

Sen. Paul LeVota, D-Independence, said he "hasn't see him at all" and that Nixon "hasn't been very involved."

"In fact, even when things came up to override, I haven't heard from him like 'Please don't override' or 'Thanks for not overriding' or anything like that," LeVota said. "So, I think he has continued his very hands off approach to the legislature."

He said Nixon's absence is making lawmakers' jobs harder.

"It makes it a little more difficult to try to have to overcome those things," LeVota said. "I'm still waiting on a decision item that affects my area and I still don't know what he's going to do with the budget."

Sen. Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia, spoke along the same lines, saying he hasn't seen much of the governor either.

"I think I had two meetings with him, which is probably two more meetings than I had with him over the budget last year," Schaefer said. "But, he really hasn't been that engaged other than the past two days."

During the seventeenth week of the eighteen week session, Nixon met with legislators to try to push through the gas tax increase.   

In the aftermath of Ferguson, Sen. Maria Chapelle-Nadal, D-St. Louis County, called for the governor's resignation on the first day of the legislative session in January. She accused him of "failed leadership" and being absent in the activities surrounding the situation in Ferguson.

Gov. Nixon's office did not respond to a request for comment.

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