JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Legal Newsline) - Chris Koster was well on track Tuesday to earn re-election as Missouri attorney general.
With 77 percent of precincts reporting, Koster had more than 235,000 votes than Republican challenger Ed Martin and a 54 percent to 42 percent lead, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Koster, 48, is seeking a second term and switched political parties in 2007 before his 2008 run for attorney general.
Koster is a former Cass County Prosecutor and state senator, who speaks highly of his experience in the courtroom and the facts he has often been face-to-face with criminals.
"I've prosecuted over 100 murder cases, and won thousands of convictions. My opponent has never even had a jury trial or put even one criminal behind bars," Koster said in a television ad. "Missouri's top law enforcement job isn't where beginners go to learn."
Koster distanced himself from national issues revolving around the presidential election, especially the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare.
Martin, 42, is the former chief of staff for former Gov. Matt Blunt, who was involved in a highly publicized fight regarding email practices with Scott Eckersley, a lawyer under him, that ended with Martin resigning from Blunt's office.
Eckersley was discharged, claimed retaliation in a lawsuit, and ultimately settled for $500,000. The state also paid $2 million in defense.
A self-proclaimed conservative fighter, Martin has publically nicknamed Koster as "Obama's Lawyer," while also reiterating his opposition to the health care law.
Martin has served as chairman of the Missouri Republican Party and has promised to expand the office's role in dealing with veteran's issues and challenge regulations on business.
Martin narrowly lost the race for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010 against Russ Carnahan, democratic incumbent for Missouri's Third Congressional District.
Also on the ballot as the libertarian party's nominee for attorney general was David Browning, who has served as a private practice attorney of law independence, assistant and prosecuting attorney.