Meet MO gubernatorial candidate Eric Greitens

Posted at 5:58 AM, Oct 01, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-01 06:58:33-04

The newest candidate for Missouri Governor made his case to voters in Kansas City for the first time during his less than week old campaign Wednesday.

Republican Eric Greitens is a former Navy Seal who served four tours overseas.

During a tour in Iraq in 2007, Greitens says his team was hit by a suicide truck bomb. While Greitens returned to full duty three days later, he says his friend were hurt much worse.

"When I came home, I went to visit them in the hospital and I saw all of these men and women who were once incredible fighters, who had taken on Al Qaeda, who volunteered for hardship, who accepted dangerous missions, they were now being broken and mistreated by our own government," Greitens said.

The republican then founded "The Mission Continues." It's an organization designed to help veterans adjust to life back in America.

Greitens says running this organization for seven years inspired him to do more.

"I think too many career politicians spend all of this time creating problems, but they don't ever spend any time solving problems," Greitens said. "I'm a person of action and as a conservative outsider I know that we can turn this state around. We can turn Missouri around and we can build a Missouri that we are proud to pass on to our children."

While Greitens is a proud Missourian, he says there are some changes we need to make, especially to the culture in Jefferson City, Mo.

"One of the things we are going to do when I'm Governor, we are going to ban gifts from lobbyists. We are going to close the revolving door between special interests and legislators and we are going to demand term limits for every statewide office holder," the candidate said.

Currently, Missouri is the only state in the U.S. allowing unlimited gifts and contributions from lobbyists.
Critics blame the no limits for what they call an "anything goes atmosphere" they believe contributed to recent scandals involving lawmakers and interns.

When he entered the race on Saturday, Greitens joined four other republican candidates. They include former Missouri House speaker and U.S. attorney Catherine Hanaway, Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder and state Sen. Bob Dixon. St. Louis area businessman John Brunner plans to enter the race on Saturday.

Attorney General Chris Koster is the only Democrat currently in the race.

With a crowded field, Greitens says the most important thing for his campaign is to talk to people all across the state.

"People around Missouri are excited to know there is a conservative outsider in the race. They are excited to know I am the only proven leader in the race. I'm the only person who has actually served on the front lines and that's why it's been so inspiring to see all of these people come together."

Current Missouri Governor Jay Nixon cannot seek re-election due to term limits.

To see our full interview with the candidate, click the video above.

(Some of the information in this article was provided by the Associated Press)


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