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Politically Speaking: Sen. Nasheed on why Democrats should want Greitens out now

Sen. Jamilah Nasheed
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio
Sen. Jamilah Nasheed

On the latest episode of Politically Speaking, St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies welcome back Sen. Jamilah Nasheed to the show for the fourth time.

Nasheed represents roughly half of the city of St. Louis. The Democratic official was first elected to her state Senate post in 2012, and was re-elected in 2016.

After news broke that Gov. Eric Greitens had an extramarital affair before he was elected to office, Nasheed was one of the first Missouri politicians to call for the GOP chief executive’s resignation. But she said later in February that “Democrats, they want to play it out all the way until November,” a reference to how some in her party want to use the governor’s political woes for their electoral benefit.

Nasheed, however, doesn’t feel that way. And she doesn’t buy the argument that her party would be worse off if Lt. Gov. Mike Parson takes over for Greitens. Some Democrats fear that Parson could unite Republicans, which in turn would make it easier to pass longstanding GOP priorities.

All of this comes as Nasheed and her Democratic colleagues are figuring out ways to stop Senate Republicans from cutting taxes. Sen. Bill Eigel’s tax plan initially passed the Senate but still needs another vote before going to the House.

Here’s what Nasheed had to say during the show:

  • Nasheed said she doesn’t know why Greitens has decided to stick it out — as opposed to resigning, as other Missouri politicians have done after being embroiled in sex scandals. “I don’t know if it’s part of the Navy SEAL mentality that you keep going and going and going and just never give up,” she said. “Or if he just has this self-interest of wanting to continue to go.”
  • She said her reason for asking for Greitens to step down isn’t related to his decision to freeze state low-income-housing tax credits. She added that Parson “would be a friend” to preserving low-income and historic-preservation tax credits.
  • Members of the Missouri House reversed Greitens’ proposed cuts to higher-education institutions. And Nasheed, a member of Senate Appropriations Committee, said she believes the Senate will agree to those budgetary changes — and potentially prevent another year of higher-education cuts.
  • Nasheed is running to become president of the St. Louis Board of Aldermen. If she wins, Nasheed would vacate her Senate seat in 2019. She said she’s endorsing state Rep. Bruce Franks, D-St. Louis, to be her successor.

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter: @jrosenbaum

Follow Jo Mannies on Twitter: @jmannies

Follow Jamilah Nasheed on Twitter: @senatornasheed

Music: “Wolf Like Me” by TV on the Radio

Jason is the politics correspondent for St. Louis Public Radio.
Jo Mannies is a freelance journalist and former political reporter at St. Louis Public Radio.