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Mo. Bill Lets First Responders Engage in Politics

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St. Louis firefighter Bruce Stalmech clears the snow from the apron at Engine House 29 in St. Louis on February 21, 2013. A morning ice storm and then several inches of snow have slowed or closed roads, businesses and schools. ( UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

St. Louis firefighter Bruce Stalmech clears the snow from the apron at Engine House 29 in St. Louis on February 21, 2013. A morning ice storm and then several inches of snow have slowed or closed roads, businesses and schools. ( UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri first responders would be allowed to engage in political activity under a bill being considered by Gov. Jay Nixon.

The measure would prohibit local governments from restricting the political activities of first responders while they’re off-duty and out of uniform. First responders, including firefighters and police, could also not be prohibited by local ordinance from seeking political office.

The legislation was sponsored by Republican Rep. Dave Hinson, of St. Clair. Hinson is a firefighter and paramedic.

Another version also awaiting Nixon’s signature would repeal a law barring Kansas City police officers from serving in political office or engaging in political activity.

Nixon has until mid-July to act on legislation.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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