In the aftermath of Governor Greitens’ indictment last week, several observers have noted that the situation could pose a real problem for Josh Hawley in his run for U.S. Senate. Former MOGOP Chairman John Hancock told the Associated Press that, “the underlying facts of Greitens’ affair pose ‘a real political problem’ for Republicans in the 2018 elections.” As another Republican operative put it, “McCaskill is already a tough beat and we’re not helped by Greitens’ situation. If this isn’t taken care of it runs a good chance of materially hurting our chances to take this Senate seat.”
Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, the presumptive Republican nominee for Senate, could be drawn into the investigation into Gov. Eric Greitens, who was indicted Thursday by a grand jury on charges relating to allegations of sexual impropriety.
Republican insiders are fretting that the Greitens affair could put undo political strain on Hawley’s bid to unseat Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., who is vulnerable in the midterm but is a tough campaigner. Hawley, in his position as state attorney general, could be asked to assist in the Greitens probe by local prosecuting attorneys, and plans to answer the call if it comes.
…But some Republican operatives worry the matter could end up negatively impacting Hawley’s campaign.
“McCaskill is already a tough beat and we’re not helped by Greitens’ situation. If this isn’t taken care of it runs a good chance of materially hurting our chances to take this Senate seat. The situation isn’t yet critical but it shows every sign of moving in that direction,” a Missouri GOP insider said.
…An incumbent governor typically is a help to his party in races such as the Senate, but an indicted one could be a detriment.
…On Friday, The Missouri Democratic Party noted that Hawley had accepted nearly $50,000 in contributions from Greitens in 2016 and has not called on Greitens to resign…
University of Missouri political science professor Peverill Squire said the 38-year-old Hawley is in a “very awkward” spot.
“As the state’s chief legal officer, he has to not appear to question the veracity of the legal process and certainly be supportive of prosecutorial staff,” Squire said. “The other problem is, of course, he’s sort of the other young and up and coming Republican, and although he obviously doesn’t wish to get confused with Greitens, it’ll be hard for him to distinguish himself.”
…Republican consultant John Hancock…added that the underlying facts of Greitens’ affair pose “a real political problem” for Republicans in the 2018 elections.
…Hancock said Greitens’ troubles could provide yet another reason for Republican voters to stay home on Nov. 6.[…]
So people, how do you think the sex scandal in Missouri will affect the Democrats’ attempt to take control of the Senate?
…Attorney General Josh Hawley, has strong connections with Greitens and something of a history of attempting to be holier-than-thou on matters relating to sex.
Hawley has criticized McCaskill for not being faster to call for Senator Al Franken to resign, but he still hasn’t demanded that his governor step down. Just this week he attempted to link McCaskill with Harvey Weinstein, claiming that she gave Weinstein “a taxpayer-funded advertisement for his movie.” This would have been a meeting McCaskill had in 2014 with Philomena Lee, a woman whose attempts to find the baby she’d given up for adoption in her youth had been made into a Weinstein film.
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