Sen. Ryan Silvey, R-Kansas City, could be the only Missouri GOP legislator to publicly condemn Republican Governor Eric Greitens for his special session approach. Silvey, who’s the Senate Appropriations Committee vice chairman, tells Missourinet there are more efficient ways Greitens could be calling extraordinary legislative sessions.
“He could issue multiple concurrent calls,” says Silvey. “He could issue another call on the same issue for the legislature to adjourn at the same time. If you were really a fiscal conservative, you would call a special session to run concurrent with veto session.”
Greitens wants lawmakers to block a St. Louis city ordinance that would bar employers from penalizing or firing women who have had an abortion, are pregnant out of marriage or use birth control. It also prohibits landlords from denying housing to women for the same reasons. Greitens’ call also includes passing annual inspection requirements for abortion clinics.
Silvey says the session is a waste of time and money.
“While the political rhetoric and the soundbites are that this is saving lives and this is pro-life, I think the reality is whatever we pass, we’ll probably get sued over, a judge will probably put an injunction on it, and it probably won’t be resolved by January. When January rolls around, my prediction is we won’t have saved any lives,” says Silvey.
He says he’s not attacking abortion measures.
“I’ve got a 13 year legislative record that shows I’m pro-life. That’s not a question,” says Silvey. “But I also think that we should respect our constitution and I don’t believe that we should be called back on every whim.”
Greitens tells Missourinet he hopes the state legislature understands how vital and urgent his call is. He goes on to say that the life and health of thousands of Missourians is at stake.
The Senate’s special session work is underway. The House will begin on June 20.
Meanwhile, the governor signed a bill into law on Monday that gives Missourians the option of a REAL ID to get onto planes, military bases and into federal buildings. Silvey, who co-sponsored the measure, says he was not invited to the bill signing. The House sponsor, Rep. Kevin Corlew, R-Kansas City, attended.
Silvey says the governor has not communicated directly with the legislature very well. According to Silvey, leadership and the Senate learned about this year’s first special session via Facebook. Silvey says he and leadership also learned about the current special session on Facebook.