Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon compared fighting between the state’s Republican and Democrat lawmakers to the bloody battles of the American Civil War as he urged both parties to work together in the future.
“One hundred and fifty years ago, Missouri was bitterly divided in the struggle for our nation's survival — and its soul,’’ Nixon, a Democrat, said as he was inaugurated to a second term.
“For a time, Missouri had two state governments, two state capitals and two governors,’’ Nixon, said as he was inaugurated to a second term.
“Two state flags fluttered above the boys in blue and gray, the sons of farmers and cobblers, tinkers and slaves. They fought and died on blood-soaked ground.’’
During one infamous massacre, Nixon told the crowd at the Missouri Capitol in Jefferson City, “Confederate guerrillas bushwhacked more than 100 Union soldiers and hacked them to ribbons."
Among those taking part in the killing spree were “two young brothers from Clay County: 20-year-old Frank and 16-year-old Jesse James."
“And for years after the war's official end, the suffering, retaliation and political struggles dragged on — crippling our economy, testing our resolve. That my friends? That was hard politics," Nixon said.
“But from that time forward the arc of Missouri history shows us that even the deepest divisions can be healed."
“The people of Missouri are tough and resilient.’’
Democracy, he said, must be a “chorus of many voices — and our democracy and our state are stronger for it.”
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