JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KMIZ)
The Missouri Ethics Commission fined former Gov. Eric Greitens' campaign in an order released Thursday after finding his committee failed to report in-kind contributions.
The commission fined the Greitens campaign $178,000 for the violations, but will only require it to pay $38,000.
An ethics commission investigation found that Greitens' campaign failed to disclose in-kind contributions in the form of advertising and that it was done in coordination with the Greitens for Missouri campaign committee. The investigation also found the campaign failed to disclose that it had received polling data from the political action committee A New Missouri.
The investigation did not find evidence that Greitens personally knew about the violations, the commission said in a consent order. However, candidates are responsible for their campaigns' financial reporting, the order said.
The investigation also found no evidence of wrongdoing regarding several allegations against the campaign.
Greitens' lawyers said the findings were a victory that "exonerated" the former governor.
“Eric Greitens is and always has been innocent of these false accusations. Our contention from the beginning was that the accusations against Mr. Greitens were baseless,” Catherine Hanaway with Husch Blackwell LLP said in a news release.
Greitens also issued a statement saying he had been cleared.
"It’s good to have been exonerated, and I’m glad to have been vindicated," Greitens said. "I’m grateful that the truth has won out, but this was never really about me — they launched this attack because we were fighting for the people of Missouri.”
The investigation began in July 2018 when then-Rep. Jay Barnes, R-Jefferson City, filed a complaint with the ethics commission. Barnes also led a state House inquiry into the Greitens campaign.
Greitens resigned in May 2018 amid a criminal investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct.