Gov. Eric Greitens struck a defiant tone in a press conference on April 11, 2018, saying he plans to remain in office and thanking people who have stood "firmly behind" him. | Hailey Hofer/Columbia Missourian

Report says Greitens lied to ethics commission, took donor list



Testimony in a new report suggests Gov. Eric Greitens ran an off-the-books political campaign in 2014 and 2015, took a donor list from his veterans charity to raise campaign funds and lied about that list to the Missouri Ethics Commission.

Those allegations are contained in a report released Wednesday by the special Missouri House committee investigating Greitens. They represent the latest accusations of criminal wrongdoing by Greitens, a Republican, who already faces two felony charges and calls from lawmakers in both parties to resign.

The report does not contain a recommendation of whether Greitens should be impeached.

Senate President Pro Tem Ron Richard, R-Joplin, said Wednesday he and House Speaker Todd Richardson, R-Poplar Bluff, had met three times that day and shared concern about the report.

Donor list

Daniel Laub, a Greitens campaign staffer who has claimed responsibility for illegally taking a donor list from the Mission Continues, a veterans charity founded by Greitens, told the Missouri attorney general’s office last month that he was duped into claiming responsibility for taking the list.

Greitens signed a consent decree in April 2017 saying his campaign had received the list as an in-kind contribution from Laub in 2015. But the charity, which could have its nonprofit status jeopardized by contributing the list, has denied that account.

In Wednesday’s report, Laub said Greitens’ version of the story was a lie.

Filing a false campaign disclosure report would be a Class A misdemeanor.

Off-the-books campaign

Also according to the report, Greitens considered running for governor as early as October 2013, and before forming a campaign committee in early 2015, he paid advisers through his companies and with personal money. Campaign committees are required to register with the state ethics commission once they spend more than $500.

Counsel raises issues

Catherine Hanaway, legal counsel for Greitens’ campaign, said the report “does a tremendous disservice to the U.S. and Missouri Constitutions.” She said the House committee didn’t let Greitens’ team testify and didn’t allow Greitens’ lawyers to cross-examine witnesses.

Read more: Columbia Missourian, Kansas City Star, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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