Rep. Mike Parson, R-Bolivar, right, hugs Rep. Bill Deeken, R-Jefferson City on the last day of the regular legislative session Friday, May 14, 2010, in Jefferson City, Mo.Both men are leaving the House this term and will run for state senate in their seperate districts.(AP Photo/Kelley McCall)
Later this afternoon, we’ll have a new Governor here in Missouri. As reported previously, Eric Greitens is stepping down (effective at 5:00 pm today). His replacement will be Mike Parson, the current Lieutenant Governor.
Parson, a 62-year-old Republican, originally from Wheatland, Missouri, isn’t exactly an unknown in Missouri — after a 6-year stint in the Army, he served as the Sheriff of Polk County for 12 years. He then moved onto the Missouri House (for 6 years), then the Missouri Senate (also for 6 years.) He was elected Lieutenant Governor in 2016, winning 110 out of 114 counties.
He has, however, maintained a fairly low profile — including being noticeably quiet in the face of the Greitens scandal(s) and fallout. In fact, he was on his farm, moving cattle, when he got the call Tuesday that Greitens was resigning. Following the news, Parson issued the following statement:
“With Governor Greitens’ decision to resign from office, he has put the best interests of our state and all Missourians at the forefront where they belong. This is a decision that will allow our state to heal and move forward from what has been a difficult time. This is an enormous responsibility serving as our state’s next governor, and I am ready to fulfill the duties of the office with honor and integrity, and with a steadfast commitment to making our great state even greater for the people we are entrusted to serve.”
Praise for Parson came swiftly after the Tuesday resignation of Greitens, who is set to step down Friday.
“I am very optimistic about what I am sure will be our state’s continued growth and vitality under Governor Parson’s leadership,” said Springfield Mayor Ken McClure. “On behalf of the City of Springfield, I pledge the City’s full support to Governor Parson and his administration.”
One thing for certain, he’ll be quite different from his brash, “outsider” predecessor. Despite the “R” behind both their names.
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