HELENA, Mont. (Legal Newsline) - Tim Fox will be Montana's first Republican attorney general in 20 years.

Fox defeated Democrat Pam Bucy on Wednesday in their bids to replace Steve Bullock, who was still locked in a tight gubernatorial contest Wednesday.

Fox, who ran for attorney general in 2008 and lost to Bulldock, is currently a Helena private practice attorney whose career spanned government service in environmental law, private practice and work in the banking sector.

Fox has made publicly clear his plan to use his potential new position to fight back against federal rules that are unpopular in Montana. Fox also looks to promote coal and oil on Montana lands.

Bucy claimed her advantage over her opponent is based on her experience as a prosecutor, as well as time in the attorney general's office. Currently, Bucy is a Department of Labor attorney.

Bucy has also announced plans to propose legislation that would prohibit any special interest group under investigation by the Department of Justice from making independent expenditures in the attorney general race.

While Montana is rich in natural resources, the attorney general has significant influence over the state's energy and environmental policy.

Montana's campaigns took center stage after the 2010 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Citizens United that allowed corporations to use money from their treasuries during elections.

It also struck down Montana's ban on some independent corporate expenditures in the Corrupt Practices Act. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled against Bullock, deciding that Citizens United preempted the state law.

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