Trump, Missouri Governor Want to Remove an Elected Prosecutor to Protect the McCloskeys

I don’t know why this isn’t getting more attention. Yes, there are headlines saying that Trump is getting involved in the possible prosecution of the McCloskeys, the famously  toxic couple who pointed guns at BLM protesters walking past their house. But this is the part that set off alarm bells for me: Missouri Governor Parsons spoke to Trump on the phone yesterday, and after that Parsons said,

The governor lamented that it is “very difficult” to remove an elected official from office, apparently meaning Gardner, but said that was something state lawmakers should address in a future legislative session. He added that he explained to Trump that his powers as governor were limited in forcing out officials.

“We got to explain to him why it’s very difficult for an elected official in the state, for a governor … how you can remove someone from office — what powers you have as a governor,” Parson said. “I don’t want to make it sound like he’s going to come in here and remove somebody from office, but I guarantee you the president is focused on what’s happening here.”

Here is the prosecutor Trump and Parsons want removed to protect the McCloskeys:

St. Louis Prosecutor Kim Gardner

Kim Gardner is the Circuit Attorney, or chief prosecutor, for the city of St. Louis. She was elected by the people of St. Louis in 2016 and assumed her duties in January 2017. She is the first African American to hold that position.

Trump and Parsons want to remove her from office because they don’t want her to prosecute the McCloskeys.  Parsons wants to change Missouri law to give the power to remove her to the state government, somehow. Of course Trump has no authority to mess with elected officials of a state, never mind a city,. But it strikes me that for a state government to remove the elected official of a city flies in the face of the principles of republican (small R) government.

There have been some notorious cases of state Repubican governors — it seems it’s always Republican governors — dismissing elected city officials and putting emergency managers in their place. You might recall that emergency managers appointed to run Detroit by then Michigan governor Rick Snyder brought about the Detroit water fiasco.

In this case, I’ve heard nothing about Gardner being corrupt. However, she’s been in the crosshairs of righties because she was instrumental in removing the previous governor, Eric Greitens, for campaign finance violations. She has also been butting heads with the St. Louis Police Department over systemic racism, and given the behavior of the StLPD during the aftermath of the Michael Brown shooting in 2014 — in brief, a police riot — my sympathies are with Kim Gardner on this point. Criminal justice reform was an issue she ran on, after all. And the people of St. Louis elected her.

Yet hardly a week goes by in these parts without some conservative group or rightie politician going on the teevee to complain about Kim Gardner. See Rashad Robinson, The People Who Undermine Progressive Prosecutors, in the New York Times, June 11:

The chief prosecutor in St. Louis, Kimberly Gardner, has made a host of changes — expanding diversion programs, dropping low-level drug cases and refusing cases that rely on untrustworthy police officers, among others.

But after what The Times described as pushback “in a manner that is virtually unheard-of for an elected prosecutor,” now Ms. Gardner is suing her own city, citing “a racially motivated conspiracy to deny the civil rights of racial minorities” by making it harder for her to make the reforms she was elected to make. Her lawsuit is supported by an organization that represents police officers, a majority of whom are black, along with civil rights law firms and many other progressive prosecutors.

If a progressive prosecutor is a black woman like Ms. Gardner, the ploys used by conservatives are shamelessly vicious. Still, no matter how loudly or often police union leaders, and their political allies stoke fear about an impending crime apocalypse if prosecutors carry out reforms, it never comes to pass.

I believe you see the picture here.

As of yet no charges have been filed against the McCloskeys, and perhaps no charges will be filed. According to the local teevee news, St. Louis police have brought a charge of unlawful use of weapons to the prosecutor, but no action has been taken. Missouri gun laws allow white people with guns to pretty much do whatever they want.

Today, Parsons made an announcement that Trump would definitely be getting involved in some punishment of Gardner; but I didn’t catch it all and it’s not online yet. Here is a report from last night’s news:

Here is background on what really happened with the McCloskeys and the protesters. See also this in-depth piece from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch about the McCloskeys and their long history of being perpetually at war with everybody. These two are a walking toxic waste dump.

10 thoughts on “Trump, Missouri Governor Want to Remove an Elected Prosecutor to Protect the McCloskeys

  1. I don't know but there's elements of a replay here. Everyone has some bias in their recollection of history but, it was in the 60s that MLK brought to the public attention the true extent and malice of institutional racism. We saw it. I was too young to understand at the time but my mother, a Republican, admired MLK greatly before he was murdered. 

    My observation is not a conclusion – yet. We saw a LOT of non-blacks marching in support of BLM a month ago. Polls consistently show a massive shift in public opinion about police targeting of minorities. Trump is aligning with old-school racism – the dog whistle is becoming a bullhorn. 

    Joe can't impose much federally on local governments, a limitation Trump is discovering. Joe could form a task force on racial reform for police departments to make recommendations at the federal, state and local level going so far as to (borrowing from ALEC) template legislation that would survive court challenges. Candidates at the state and local levels could run on endorsing those reforms.

    Somebody of national stature who understands working with all levels of government would need to head such a force. Maybe someone with experience from being a Community Organizer all the way to occupying the Oval Office. 

    Just sayin'

  2. She sounds great. I don’t think a specifically crafted law to remove one highly effective individual will pass muster even in Missouri, though.

    And the optics on the whole McClosky stench are too damning. People want those sick f’ers somewhere they can’t shoot their neighbors.

  3. maha, 

    You mentioned something about about "the principles of republican (small R) government."

    The word "principle(s)," is now a furriner wurd to the (Capital R) Republican Party.

    They are the "Might Makes Right" party.  One that's addicted to power for power's sake.

    To Conservatives/Republicans, anything and everything comes in a distant 2nd to getting and keeping "power."  There is nothing, NOTHING, they won't do for power!

    Ok, enough of crappy news – normally, I don't mock the dead, but I'll make an exception in this case:  The good news is that noted bigot, Rachel Dawn Ruit, who assaulted a Muslim woman, and threatened to rape a 14 year-old girl who was with her, has died.

    Apparently, on Monday, she was run over by a fire emergdncy vehicle (a fire-truck, maybe?), and has died!

    Karma can really be a bitch, can't it?!?

  4. It`s because Ms Gardner is a woman of color and in a position of Authority which Mr Trumps HATES .

    • Or maybe it's because she's a racist herself misusing the authority of her office to further both her political agenda and career.  The McClosky persecution is prime example.  Now that it's been exposed that she has committed evidence tampering and blatantly guilty of malicious prosecution, her career as a prosecutor and a lawyer are about to come to screeching halt.  If there's any justice in the world, she also be prosecuted herself.

  5. People trespassed on private property and threatened to kill them and burn down their home. They are lucky they weren’t on my property making threats, several would be in the ground. 

  6. Removing the anti-American, racist Kim Gardner is NOT to protect the McClosky's as this article says.  Gardner is violating their civil rights, their 2A rights, and their state's rights. The McClosky's have a right to expect they be trteated fairly according to the rule of law -NOT according to anarchistic mobs or those who.  wrongfully brandish their power under the color of law. Kim Gardner needs to be prosecuted.

    She has for years shown a pattern. She is in violation of her oath and she needs to. be removed by whatever legal means is available.  She is a danger to the community.

    Every person in power who violates the rule of law and/or violates their oath needs to be removed. 

  7. It's not about removing an elected prosecutor to protect anyone.  It's about removing an unqualified person that is consumed with misusing her office to commit perjury, evidence tampering, and prosecutorial misconduct to further her racist agenda. 

    Kimberly Gardner is unfit to be dog catcher.  And that has absolutely nothing to do with the color of her skin, but the content of her flawed character.  Now that it has come to light that her office tampered with the McClosky pistol in order file a false charging document, the governor doesn't need any new laws to remover her.  She's provided that justification all on her own.  The Missouri Bar will make quick work of her law license as well. 

    • We don’t know that the McCloskeys didn’t tamper with the pistol before it got to the prosecutor, genius. Duh.

      • Beware of those who attack a person's character without strong evidence or really anyone that starts an argument that way.

        Oh how I have seen that worked unfairly in my day.

        Thou shalt not use the name of truth in vain.  So it is written and so it should be IMO.























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