My piece at the New York Post begins:
Having muscled their way to the front line in the nation’s political battles, state attorneys general are now in for getting roughed up along with the other partisan combatants.
The Republican Attorneys General Association, representing just over half the 50 state AGs, has voted to end a “rare bit of bipartisanship in the polarized environment of US politics,” to quote Reuters, which reported the news. It’s going to ditch an unspoken hands-off agreement with its rival Democratic Attorneys General Association under which each party targeted open seats only and held back from bankrolling challenges against the others’ incumbents.
Democrats are expected to respond in kind and start going after incumbent Republicans. If there were still any hope that the chief legal officers of the states could stay above the fray in some genteel way, it’s pretty much gone. Truth to tell, it’s been gone for years.
I run through some of the politicized doings of state AGs — from funneling lawsuit settlements to community-group chums, to organizing in packs to roam the national political scene fighting Presidents of both parties, to taking out after wrongful advocacy in such forms as “climate denial,” to the new prosecution over hidden filming of Planned Parenthood executives. Like or dislike this activity, there’s no doubt it’s political and that attorneys general need to make themselves accountable for it at election time.