Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens talks successes, dodges questions over nonprofit group

Posted at 7:42 PM, May 12, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-12 23:37:09-04

Gov. Eric Greitens held his second statehouse press conference since taking office on Friday; the same day the Missouri General Assembly ended its 2017 session.

Greitens used the occasion to tout his successes during his first four months, notably making Missouri a right-to-work state.

"Conservatives have been trying to enact right-to-work for 40 years. We got it done in six weeks," he explained. "We had to fight a corrupt system that was forcing people to pay union dues just so they could keep a job."

Greitens began the meeting focusing on ethics reform in Missouri and brought attention to changes he's made while in office.

"For the first time in Missouri history, I signed a complete ban on lobbyist gifts to the executive branch," the governor said. "For the first time in Missouri history, no lobbyist can ever give a gift to me or anyone who's in my administration."

The governor added he will call on the General Assembly to implement term limits for state leaders.

Watch the full news conference below: 

Greitens also brought up his administration's responses to natural disasters in the state, like the Oak Grove tornado in March, and providing resources and crews to help people impacted.

"As a Navy SEAL, we always prepared for the hardest missions," he said. "I want to tell you that our team was prepared and ready and they worked hard to keep people safe."

Despite the mentions of victories during his term, Greitens could not escape questions over controversies facing his team.

Reporters pressed the governor on his involvement with New Missouri Inc., a nonprofit linked to Greitens as a way to further his agenda.

"I was very clear, sir...I have no day-to-day responsibilities," said Greitens when responding to a reporter's question about the group.

Greitens concluded the press conference hinting at calling a special session for the General Assembly as a way to push forward on issues with the Republican-controlled Missouri House and Senate.

"We're going to keep fighting for the people of Missouri," he explained. "For a lot of these politicians, round two is going to start sooner than they think."