The Missouri Supreme Court has scheduled oral arguments for next week in the case involving whether Governor Mike Parson has the authority to appoint a lieutenant governor.
Mike Parson took the oath of office as governor on June 1 and appointed Senate Majority Leader Mike Kehoe as lieutenant governor on June 18. The Missouri Democratic Party and Hartville World War II veteran Darrell Cope filed a lawsuit the next day. The Missouri Constitution doesn’t specifically address how the lieutenant governor should be replaced when there’s a vacancy.
Missouri First Assistant Attorney General D. John Sauer says Governor Parson had clear authority under Article 4 Section 4 of the state Constitution to appoint Kehoe. Missouri Democratic Party attorney Matthew Vianello wanted Cole County Judge Jon Beetem to issue a ruling which says the governor cannot appoint a lieutenant governor, when the lieutenant governor position is vacant. Judge Beetem ruled in July that Parson had authority to appoint Kehoe. The Supreme Court will hear the case next Wednesday.