The Missouri Ethics Commission on Thursday dismissed a complaint leveled against former Gov. Eric Greitens by a federal watchdog last year.
Executive Director Elizabeth Ziegler wrote in the commission’s decision that Greitens’ state campaign account did not violate state law. The nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center filed the complaint with the commission in December alleged that account had spent money directed toward his U.S. Senate campaign, which would have violated a previous agreement between Greitens and the commission.
The state campaign committee, Greitens for Missouri, had “no requirement … to report an in-kind contribution made to” Greitens for Senate, the former governor’s Senate campaign account, Ziegler wrote. The contribution is related to the licensing for Greitens’ campaign website, which changed hands between committees in late March 2021.
The commission’s investigation also “did not find evidence” that other payments from the state account to a “strategic planning” firm were not connected with his U.S. Senate campaign.
It also found that a payment for “media services” that the watchdog alleged as being connected to his Fox News appearance launching his Senate campaign was not used for that purpose. Although the payment was not initially reported as an independent contract by the campaign, an amended report submitted Wednesday did so, Ziegler wrote.
“It was clear from the beginning no wrongdoing ever took place,” Greitens campaign manager Dylan Johnson said in a statement. “The truth came out today and Gov. Greitens has once again defeated the woke, radical liberals, RINOs and the weak political establishment.”
Campaign Legal Center filed a separate complaint last year, including similar allegations, with the Federal Elections Commission. The Missouri commission has previously fined Greitens’ state campaign $178,000; $30,000 was paid immediately and the rest would have to be paid if another violation was discovered.
Greitens, who resigned in 2018 after facing allegations of blackmail and sexual assault and having his campaign spending investigated by lawmakers, is running in a crowded Republican field to succeed U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt. His primary opponents include Attorney General Eric Schmitt, U.S. Reps. Vicky Hartzler and Billy Long, Mark McCloskey and Senate President Pro Tem Dave Schatz.
This article originally appeared on Springfield News-Leader: MO ethics commission dismisses complaint against Greitens campaign