A judge in Jefferson City has dismissed a lawsuit filed against Governor Blunt, alleging that the governor has violated state law in how his office has handled e-mail correspondence.
Cole County Circuit Judge Richard Callahan has ruled that special investigator Mel Fisher lacks standing to bring the lawsuit. Attorneys for Governor Blunt had argued in court yesterday that state law made no provision for the type of special investigative team appointed by Attorney General Jay Nixon. Blunt’s attorney, John Holstein, had argued in court that allowing the lawsuit to go on as is would establish a poor precedent.
Callahan has given the Attorney General ten days to join the lawsuit or for Fisher, the former State Highway Patrol Superintendent, to establish personal standing so that the lawsuit might continue. Callahan has not ruled on the motion to intervene brought by the Associated Press, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and the Kansas City Star. The media have all made various requests for e-mails from the governor’s office.
The lawsuit alleges the governor’s office has violated both the state records retention law and the Sunshine Law by deleting e-mails that should have been retained.