Oklahoma AG intends to run for governor in 2010

Chris Rizo Dec. 11, 2008, 1:23pm

Drew Edmondson (D)

OKLAHOMA CITY (Legal Newsline)-Instead of seeking a fifth term as Oklahoma's attorney general, Drew Edmondson said he will instead likely run for governor in 2010.

"I intend to be a candidate for governor in 2010. I will make an official announcement sometime next year, but I want to tell you now," Edmondson said in a recent letter to campaign contributors.

The Democrat said he won't make a formal announcement whether he will run for governor until next year, after resolution of a lawsuit he filed against large-scale poultry farms in 2005. He claims the companies have contaminated Oklahoma waterways by allowing tons of poultry waste to flow into the Illinois River watershed.

The case goes to trial in September in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Oklahoma.

"Serving as attorney general has been an honor-I have loved it, but I am ready for new challenges," Edmondson said. "I consider this effort to protect Oklahoma's scenic waters the most important major issue left to me as attorney general."

Elected attorney general in 1994, Edmondson won re-election in 1998, 2002 and 2006. He won more than 60 percent of the vote in his last two elections. In 2010, Democratic Gov. Brad Henry is barred by term limits from seeking re-election.

Edmondson, 62, has said if he does not run for governor he will re-enter private practice, his spokeswoman told Legal Newsline.

In his letter, he told campaign contributors that unless they object, contributions they have given to his 2010 re-election campaign will be applied to a 2010 gubernatorial campaign. The letter said contributors have until December 31 to ask for a refund.

From Legal Newsline: Reach reporter Chris Rizo at chrisrizo@legalnewsline.com.

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