Eric Greitens is the governor of Missouri, having won his election bid in 2016 by a narrow margin. At age 43, he is the second youngest governor in the U.S. Until his bid for governor, he was a democrat, but changed his party affiliation in 2015 when he tossed his hat into the gubernatorial ring, running on a platform of ‘ethics reform’ (remember this one, folks) as a republican. Greitens has been married to his present wife, Sheena, for over six years and they have two sons. Now, why am I wasting my Saturday morning writing about this seemingly innocuous person? Read on …
In 2015, he invited his hair stylist to his apartment for an evening of fun and games. At some point during the evening, he tied the nude hair stylist to the bed, blindfolded her, and proceeded to take photographs. He then told her, “You’re never going to mention my name, otherwise there will be pictures of [you] everywhere.” There is no doubt that this is all true, for Mr. Greitens himself admitted to it publicly, just hours before the investigative story broke on a St. Louis television station.
On February 22, 2018, Greitens was indicted by a St. Louis grand jury on felony invasion of privacy charges. Shortly afterward he was taken into custody by St. Louis sheriff’s deputies. He was released on bond and will appear in St. Louis City Circuit Court on March 16, 2018.
While Greitens’ behaviour is crude and disgusting, and yet another example of a male who feels empowered simply because he happens to possess a certain anatomical appendage, it would not normally give me reason to be pounding the keyboard on a Saturday morning. What added fuel to the fire was Greitens’ response, as well as the reaction of the Missouri Republican Party, who wasted no time coming to Greitens’ defense with an offensive tactic of their own. They claim, according to spokesman Sam Cooper, that it is a ‘political hit job’ and should be disregarded.
The investigation was launched by St. Louis circuit attorney Kim Gardner, newly elected in 2016, whose campaign funding included monies from a Super PAC connected to George Soros — the Safety & Justice Commission – that helped fund advertising. First, Greitens; response …
“As I have said before, I made a personal mistake before I was Governor. With today’s disappointing and misguided political decision, my confidence in our prosecutorial system is shaken, but not broken. I did not commit a crime. I know this will be righted soon. The people of Missouri deserve better than a reckless liberal prosecutor who uses her office to score political points. I look forward to the legal remedies to reverse this action. This will not for a moment deter me from doing the important work of the great people of Missouri.”
A “personal mistake”? He “did not commit a crime”? Excuse me, but I thought invasion of privacy and threats of blackmail were crimes? And, don’t the people of Missouri deserve better than a governor who has no morals, no values? Perhaps Missouri is a world apart from the rest of the U.S. Oh wait … it is 2018, the brave new world of “anything goes” as long as you either, a) have money, b) have power, or c) are a male. And then the Missouri GOP got on the band wagon …
Once again, the GOP takes a firm stand, as they did with Roy Moore in Alabama last year, on the side of injustice and immorality, another sign that women are, in the eyes of the GOP, a substandard segment of humanity. But … there is some good news. Individual republican leaders are appalled and are not playing along with the party line.
“I am disgusted to learn that a grand jury has found sufficient evidence to indict Governor Greitens on a felony charge. The conservative values that put us in office are far bigger than any single person. For the sake of our state, I am calling on Governor Greitens to put an end to this distraction and resign immediately. Should he refuse to step aside, I will call on my colleagues in the house to take all necessary actions to remove the governor from office.” – Republican State Senator Caleb Rowden
“Missouri’s name is being tarnished across the nation. If he doesn’t resign, the state House…should move swiftly to bring this to a resolution.” – Republican State Senator Rob Schaaf
I am thoroughly disgusted, but not surprised, by the actions and subsequent words of Governor Greitens as well as the Missouri GOP. I am, however, encouraged to see at least a few individual republican lawmakers who are as appalled as I at Greitens’ behaviour. This is a case that I will be keeping an eye on. Meanwhile, let us hope that the calls for Greitens’ resignation are successful. We do not need ‘men’ like him in positions of power. He should be put out to pasture.