Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has consistently and repeatedly vetoed and cut funding for the state’s public defender system, forcing it into such a state of financial disrepair that it currently ranks second to last in the entire country.
So Michael Barrett, the director of the Missouri State Public Defender System, invoked Section 600.042.5 of the Missouri Revised Statutes and appointed Governor Jay Nixon as defense counsel:
[T]o ensure that poor people who face incarceration are afforded competent counsel in their defense, I hereby appoint you, Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon, Bar No. 29603, to enter your appearance as counsel of record in the attached case.
Source: After Repeated Budget Cuts, Pissed-Off Public Defender Appoints State Governor As Defense Counsel
Hat tip: MrMild
If Governor Jay Nixon were a man of conscience and convictions, he would have served, and urged all the other attorneys in the state to do likewise. He could have said something like, “Here in Missouri, we believe that individuals should step up to the plate to do their civic duty, and not rely on taxes to provide the Constitutionally-required defense for indigent defendants.”