A bipartisan pair of prominent attorneys renewed a lawsuit Monday seeking e-mails from Gov. Matt Blunt's office while asserting it has violated Missouri's open-records law.
The amended lawsuit also renews an assertion that someone acting under the control of the governor's office sought to destroy backup e-mail records to avoid complying with a Sunshine Law request by The Associated Press.
The new version of the lawsuit was filed by former Democratic Lt. Gov. Joe Maxwell and Republican attorney Louis Leonatti. They were appointed by a Cole County judge as assistant attorneys general on the case after Blunt's office objected to the legal authority of a St. Louis lawyer chosen by Attorney General Jay Nixon...
Last month, Cole County Judge Richard Callahan ruled that Nixon's selected investigator, Mel Fisher, had no legal authority to sue the governor's office on behalf of the attorney general. But the judge subsequently appointed Maxwell and Leonatti to the investigation and delayed the dismissal of the lawsuit to give them time to decide whether to continue or drop the case.
Maxwell, speaking for the duo, said it seemed Fisher's investigation had "been hampered" by the governor's office and its attorneys and determined the case should go forward. They largely adopted the assertions in the original lawsuit filed on behalf of Fisher by St. Louis attorney Chet Pleban.