Another set of proposed ethics reforms is about to be considered by the state House.
The key proposal among the bills the House will debate next would ban gifts from lobbyists to legislators, elected officials, or judges. The sponsor, Representative Justin Alferman (R-Hermann), says a ban would address one of the ethical issues most obvious in the minds of voters.
“The perception is legislators go to Jefferson City and are constantly pampered by lobbyists. I would say for the overarching General Assembly that’s probably a generalization that’s not entirely accurate, but that’s the perception,” Alferman told Missourinet.
Representative Gina Mitten (D-St. Louis) and other Democrats last week criticized ethics reform proposals as not going far enough, and she says she still has that concern.
“I think that the lobbyist gift ban is a baby step,” said Mitten. “I think that there are aspects of that bill that if it were completely up to me I would probably tweak it a little bit differently, but it’s not completely up to me.”
Mitten did not explain exactly what she would change about Alferman’s legislation, describing what she would do differently with that issue as being, “stylistic.”
Democrats including Mitten want Republicans to debate campaign contribution limits, with Mitten even calling the majority party, “afraid” to debate adding that issue to any bills.
House Republicans say they want to keep bills to single topics to give them a better chance of becoming law, and say campaign contribution limits could be considered this session.
Two other bills headed to the House floor would limit how long campaign funds can be invested and how they can be used, and keep people appointed to task forces and commissions from profiting from the recommendations they make.
Those bills could be debated later this week.