Governor Mike Parson’s recent appointment of current state Treasurer Eric Schmitt to replace U.S. Senator-elect Josh Hawley as Attorney General before Thanksgiving was only the latest in what has been a nearly flawless string of appointments the Governor has made since taking office.
Many have noted that he has had many to make, but that is simply the process the state constitution has set forth. The number and seriousness of the appointments have added to the uniquely stressful transition and first few months in office, but the list of decisions have been impeccable by any standard.
The latest in Schmitt, a constitutional conservative, was the top choice in the beginning of the process and was the right choice in the end. His commitment to law and order matches that of a former Sheriff’s.
While there were several options that could have fit for the state’s top law enforcement official, Schmitt was the perfect choice because coming out of the most scandal-plagued administration in nearly 150 years, he has never had even a hint of scandal touch his time in public service.
Also, while many have a clear commitment to law and order, he is someone who has demonstrated a clear ability to be able to work with and listen people of all perspectives.
“I’m a constitutional conservative, but that doesn’t mean you can’t listen to people,” Schmitt said on a recent episode of This Week in Missouri Politics.
Schmitt proved in the state Senate that he listens and is a change-maker when he piloted SB 5 after the Ferguson civil unrest, which limited the percentage of income municipalities can derive from fees. It came to his attention that several cities throughout the state gathered an exorbitant amount of income off of the backs of citizens’ fees from a variety of misdemeanors, ranging from traffic tickets to lawn maintenance. Schmitt created a coalition of a variety of change-agents who helped that bill become a reality.
“That passion I brought to that debate is the same kind of passion I’m going to bring to this office,” Schmitt said.
The appointment of Schmitt was just the latest in a string of appointments that have gone a long way in restoring honor and dignity to the Governor’s Office.
His appointment of Lt. Governor Mike Kehoe set the tone of statesmanship right from the start. The Governor has also went about appointing Missourians to the state’s boards and commissions that are concerned about Missouri and not about the special interests from the coasts.
The choices to lead two of the key commissions, former Senator Ryan Silvey to the chairman of the Public Service Commission and former Representative Robert Cornejo to the Labor and Industrial Relations Commission. Both were praised in all reasonable circles as chairmen who will continue professionalism and reinforces the standard of statesmanship has set for his administration.
With this record, it’s only reasonable to expect the Governor’s appointment to the Treasurer’s Office will be great.