Members of the Missouri House voted almost unanimously Wednesday to censure Rep. Wiley Price IV after a House investigation determined he coerced his former legislative assistant and committed perjury during an investigation into claims he had sex with a House intern in January 2020.
The Missouri Committee on Ethics in December released an 8-page report detailing the investigation. The report states that he coerced his former legislative assistant into changing her story and that he lied about claiming to have had sex with a House intern.
The 10-person committee recommended the House take several actions. One was that he be censured, which is a formal statement by the House expressing disapproval, and another was that he pay $22,494 to cover the cost of the investigation.
The House voted 140-3 to censure Price.
The Associated Press reported that there was a Republican-led effort to kick him out of the House but that did not gain enough support to pass and was withdrawn for consideration.
House Speaker Rob Vescovo, R-Arnold, House Speaker Pro Tem John Wiemann, R-St. Charles, and Majority Floor Leader Dean Plocher, R-St. Louis, issued a statement after Price was censured.
“The offenses outlined by our bipartisan House Ethics Committee merit strong repercussions, which is why we supported the censure motion and the amendment to expel Rep. Price from this body. While the expulsion amendment didn’t have the necessary two-thirds vote for approval, the majority of our caucus supported the effort to remove Rep. Price from this body for his egregious offenses.
“The overwhelming vote today by the House of Representatives to censure Rep. Price marks the first time in the history of the House that such a measure has been approved. This inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated here in the Capitol. We will continue to work diligently to promote a culture here in the Capitol that protects our members, staff and interns from any form of harassment.”
Price is the son of The St. Louis American’s staff photographer Wiley Price III.