Greitens files request for temporary restraining order against Hawley

Posted at 4:37 PM, Apr 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-18 23:15:41-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens filed a request for a temporary restraining order against Attorney General Josh Hawley.

The governor filed the request in Cole County on April 16.

According to court documents, Greitens wants Hawley to recuse himself and his office from any investigation or prosecution related to the governor or his office. The documents say if there is an investigation or prosecution "it must be conducted by a court-appointed special prosecutor independent of the [Attorney General's Office.]"

In the court documents, Greitens cites a FOX News interview with Hawley on March 28. During that interview, the host asked Hawley if the governor should resign.

Hawley responded, "I don't want to say anything that would compromise in anyway my investigation, which is ongoing..."

That investigation deals with the governor's alleged use of a donor list from a charity.

Then on April 11, with that investigation still ongoing, Hawley called on Greitens to resign immediately.The statement came following the release of a House report investigating other allegations against the governor. 

In the court documents, Greitens' attorneys argue, "by his own published standards, AG Hawley's official public call for Gov. Greitens to resign compromises the [Attorney General's Office] ongoing investigation of Gov. Greitens."

On Tuesday, Hawley said his office uncovered criminal activity by the Greitens campaign when he used a donor list from a charity for political gain. Hawley turned over the evidence he says his office uncovered to the St. Louis Circuit Attorney. That's because Hawley's office does not have jurisdiction in the case.

Hawley says it's a "frivolous motion."

Following the release of the temporary restraining order request, Park University political science assistant professor Matt Harris said the governor’s legal team was trying to fight multiple battles at once.

“I think anything he (Greitens) can do to hold off one of these cases is what his attorneys are trying to do,” he explained. “He’s feeling it from multiple angles right now. There’s a lot of heat on the governor.”

Harris told 41 Action News that the charity donor case against Grietens brought possible ethics issues into play.

“You’d imagine that people who made a donation probably didn’t expect to be contacted for partisan political purposes,” he explained.

Harris added that the case brought all sorts of political impact, including for Attorney General Josh Hawley.

“Hawley wants to be seen as someone who is not partisan,” he explained.