Missouri’s new Attorney General Andrew Bailey takes office

Missouri’s new Attorney General Andrew Bailey has officially taken office. An appellate judge swore Bailey in during a Tuesday ceremony at the state Supreme Court. Republican Gov. Mike Parson appointed Bailey to replace Eric Schmitt, who won election to the U.S. Senate last year.
Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey
Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey(ky3)
Published: Jan. 3, 2023 at 2:02 PM CST
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri’s new Attorney General Andrew Bailey officially took office Tuesday during an inaugural ceremony at the state Supreme Court.

Missouri Eastern District Appeals Court Judge Kelly Broniec swore Bailey in as his family flanked him.

Gov. Mike Parson appointed the fellow Republican to replace Eric Schmitt, who took office as Missouri’s newest U.S. senator on Tuesday after voters elected him to Congress last year.

Bailey previously worked as the attorney for the Governor’s Office under Parson.

Missouri’s attorney general is responsible for defending state laws against court challenges, prosecuting some criminal cases and enforcing laws on consumer protection and government transparency.

Bailey on Tuesday told reporters he plans to continue efforts to shut down Agape Boarding School, a private Christian school in southwest Missouri where several staffers have been charged with felony and misdemeanor abuse.

Bailey touted himself as a constitutional conservative devoted to following the law, whether that be to enforce public access to their government or crack down on cities that take a lenient stance on unhoused people living on the streets, per a new law.

The law, which took effect Sunday, prohibits homeless people from sleeping on state land without permission and gives the attorney general the authority to sue cities that don’t enforce the law.