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Oral arguments set for Thursday in Clean Missouri appeal


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — With absentee ballots set to start going out in little more than a week, it’s little surprise that the appeal in the Clean Missouri case is set to be heard this week.

On Friday, a Cole County ruled that the initiative petition dealing with campaign contribution limits and state legislature redistricting guidelines encompassed more than one subject in violation of the Missouri Constitution. The measure was ordered removed from the ballot.

Before the day was over, Chuck Hatfield, attorney for the Clean Missouri campaign, sent a notice of appeal to the district court.

The Western District Court of Appeals is scheduled to hear the case on Thursday at 2:30 p.m. Absentee voting begins on September 25, 2018.

Three current and former Senators filed a brief in support of Amendment 1 being decided by voters and not in court.

“The voters of Missouri, rather than the courts, should decide the fate of this important initiative,” former-Sens. Jim Lembke, Bob Johnson, and Sen. Rob Schaaf told the court. “The Clean Missouri initiative, if enacted by the voters, would improve democratic accountability of the legislature in very important ways.”  

The Clean Missouri campaign touts bipartisan support, however, the opposition to the measuring is being spearheaded by Republicans.  

“From the beginning, Clean Missouri has used the guise of ethics reform and sleek marketing to distract Missourians from their real aim: radically redistricting Missouri to solely benefit liberal Democrats,” said Chris Nuelle, spokesperson for the Missouri Republican Party, following Cole County Circuit Judge Daniel Green.

“The Missouri Republican Party applauds the court for throwing out Clean Missouri’s subversive attempt to completely change Missouri’s legislative districts to make up for Democrats’ repeated losses at the ballot box, and we hope that any further attempts to trick Missourians like this are thrown out as well.”