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Missouri Freedom Caucus holds rally at Capitol

Yesterday morning, a large crowd of supporters of the Missouri Freedom Caucus (MOFC) gathered on the second floor of the Missouri State Capitol to protest recent events in the Missouri Senate. 

The last few weeks have been tumultuous for Republicans in the Senate. The Missouri Freedom Caucus continued to filibuster gubernatorial appointments to expedite initiative petition reform. The filibuster resulted in Senate Pro Tem Caleb Rowden stripping Senators Bill Eigel, Andrew Koenig, Rick Brattin, and Denny Hoskins from their respective committees. 

This led to backlash from MOFC members, with Eigel calling the action “punitive, and retaliatory” at the Senate press conference. 

Later, the MOFC called for the resignations of Rowden and Senate Majority Lader Cindy O’Laughlin. 

Yesterday, one week after Eigel was stripped of his committee position, he spoke to the crowd of supporters at the Capitol. 

“I want you to know what keeps us going, is knowing that no matter how many people in this building don’t like what we are doing, you all agree with us,” Eigel said. 

Other members of the MOFC spoke as well, including Hoskins. 

“When we started filibustering a couple of weeks ago, we said initiative petition reform is the number one priority, not just for the Freedom Caucus, but also for the Republican party,” Hoskins said. 

Former Missouri House Speaker and current State Director of the Missouri Freedom Caucus Tim Jones also spoke about the event. 

“When it became obvious to the Senate members of the Missouri Freedom Caucus (MOFC) that Senator Rowden had no interest in moving Initiative Petition Reform, the top priority of the Missouri GOP & Missouri Republican voters, the MOFC sprung into action & used an excellently executed surgical filibuster to force Rowden to advance this legislation,” Jones said. 

“Because of the MOFC, IP Reform has thus far moved faster than it ever has in the previous 5 years and is ready for debate by the Senate as a whole. The massive outpouring of support by hundreds of engaged Missourians at the Capitol today for the MOFC proved that the Caucus is pursuing Republican priorities that the voters want to see passed.”

Currently, legislation regarding initiative petition reform, specifically Senator Mary Elizabeth Coleman’s SJR 74, passed out of the Local Government and Elections Committee with a 5-2 vote.