Missouri lawmaker questions upcoming special session

ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KSDK) – We are just over a day away from another special session of the Missouri legislature. This time, Gov. Eric Greitens is calling lawmakers back to Jefferson City to take on the issue of abortion. Specifically, an ordinance that deals with abortion in the City of St. Louis.

The city passed an ordinance banning employers and landlords from discriminating against any woman who has had an abortion.

"We have these radical politicians in St. Louis that are attacking pregnancy care centers trying to make St. Louis an abortion sanctuary city," Greitens said. "Well, I’m here to tell you, not on my watch."

In the special session Monday, Greitens wants lawmakers to override the St. Louis law and, at the same time, put stricter regulations on abortion providers. The Republican also wants lawmakers to add protections for religious anti-abortion organizations.

"They left for vacation when the session ended and they thought, well, that’s just going to be how it is. It’s just going to be okay," Greitens said. "So you know what? We’re calling them back in to get this done on behalf of the cause of pro-life."

At least one local lawmaker is pushing back against the governor. State Rep. Bruce Franks Jr. (D – St. Louis) says it’s unnecessary to discuss the issue now, considering it was already debated during the regular session.

"This isn’t a special session topic," Franks Jr. said. "This is something that happens. Matter of fact, bills die. Bills die all the time in the legislature."

He says he and fellow representatives would rather spend time on other issues on the ground in their districts.

"Folks go back to work," he said. "Folks go back to the communities, in their disenfranchised communities, economically distressed communities, to do the work. So for the governor to label this, bringing us off our vacations, like I don’t know what vacation. He could come to some of these funerals with me and come on the scenes of some of these kids getting shot and we’ll see how much a vacation this is."

The most recent special session in Missouri lasted a week and cost tax payers about $66,000 dollars.

© 2017 KSDK-TV

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