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Federalist Society holds first meeting in Jefferson City


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Last week, the Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy studies met in Jefferson City for their inaugural meeting, with 75 people attending, including Secretary of State John R. Ashcroft and Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court Zel Fischer, as well as staff representing the Governor, Attorney General, and the Treasurer.

“It was a meet and greet. It was kind of a first event to see who was interested.” David Welch, Federalist Society president said. “We had a great turnout. We had about 75 people there. People were basically talking with each other and talked about the founding ideas of the Federalist Society.”

The group was founded in 1982 to under the conservative philosophy that the state exists to preserve freedom, that the separation of governmental powers is central to the Constitution, and that it is emphatically the province and duty of the judiciary to say what the law is, not what it should be.

Ashcroft, second from right, with meeting attendees

“For a long time, the legal profession has been viewed as very liberal and not necessarily has been that liberal, but that has been the perception,” Welch said. “In this case, it gives people the opportunity to see that there are other people with similar points of view and vibe with the legal profession”

In August, the group met to appoint leaders to the steering committee of the Jefferson City chapter, which includes the Honorable Jon Beetem, Stephanie Bell, Jennifer Bukowsky, Hon. Zel Fischer, Jason Glahn, Daniel Green, Lucinda Luetkemeyer, David Minnick, Evan Rosell, David Welsch, and Hampton Williams.

Until mid-August, Jefferson City did not have a chapter of the Federalist Society. Currently, the organization has seven active chapters in cities in Missouri. There are over 35,000 members nationally.

The Jefferson City chapter plans on meeting in late January 2018 to talk about campaign finance laws and financial transparency regulations. In April, they plan to hold a conference and continuing their legal education program on redistricting issues.