Monday, February 10, 2014

Missouri Lawmakers File Articles of Impeachment on Gov. Jay Nixon Over Gay Marriage Income Tax Executive Order

Eight Republican lawmakers have filed two articles of impeachment against Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon because of a November 2013 executive order allowing married same-sex couples to file their state taxes jointly despite a 2004 constitutional ban against the recognition of same-sex marriages:
Representative Nick Marshall (R-Parkville) has filed two articles of impeachment. He says Governor Nixon’s executive order instructing the Department of Revenue to accept joint tax returns filed by same-sex couples legally married in other states “is a direct violation” of Missouri’s Constitution. Further, he says Nixon “misstates and misrepresents the meaning and requirements under Missouri’s constitutional and statutory law and thereby misleads the citizens of this state...”

The articles of impeachment have been co-signed by seven Republican members of the House: Ron Schieber, Ken Wilson, Jeff Pogue, Kurt Bahr, Mike Moon, Rick Brattin & T.J. Berry.

Moon (R-Ash Grove) has said he will seek to impeach Nixon for not acting quickly enough to set special election dates for vacant seats in the House and one in the Senate.  Moon told Missourinet earlier this week he would file articles of impeachment this week, but that has not happened and calls to his Capitol office today have not been answered.

Articles of impeachment move through the legislative process in the House similarly to the way a bill would. They would have to be first referred to a committee. If the the articles are passed in the House, Nixon would be tried by a commission of seven jurists elected by the Senate.
Gov. Nixon justified his executive order by pointing out state tax law that indicates that state tax filing should match what is filed at the federal level. If a married same-sex couple living in Missouri files joint federal tax returns, state law requires that they should also file state taxes jointly.

1 comment:

majii said...

I live in GA, Jon, and I've been following this bit of nonsense. It's a shame when members of state legislatures across the nation don't know/understand the U.S. Constitution. The full faith and credit clause in the Constitution states that each state has to "recognize the legal public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State." These lawmakers' move to impeach Gov. Nixon is not rooted in the law but in their personal beliefs about gay Americans. They should be ashamed of themselves. I was raised under segregation in the South, so I fully understand what it's like to be a citizen and have other Americans use the law to deny others their civil rights. This is wrong, and it's the reason I'm in favor of all Americans being able to exercise their civil rights under the Constitution.

Another crack occurred in the wall of denying gay Americans their rights today when a federal judge in KY ruled that the state must honor the marriages of gay Americans. Hooray! Maybe this ruling will persuade the MO lawmakers to stop impeachment proceedings against Gov. Nixon. One can hope.