Tuesday, June 1, 2010

DC Residents to Vote for AG?

cross-posted from Sum of Change

Earlier today, the City Council for the District of Columbia voted to let DC residents decide on a possibly change in the way it chooses the Attorney General, according to WTOP.

Currently, the Mayor selects the AG for the state. In November, DC residents will vote on whether or not the AG seat should be on the ballot. The majority of states choose their Attorneys General by vote, with only nine states and the District appointing the AG (14 if you include American Samoa, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands).

Here is the list of appointed Attorneys General, according to the National Association of Attorney's General (NAAG):
*American Samoa Attorney General
District of Columbia
New Hampshire
New Jersey
*Northern Mariana Islands
*Puerto Rico
South Dakota
*Virgin Islands

Description from the about NAAG page:
[The AG] is appointed by the governor in five states (Alaska, Hawaii, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and Wyoming) and in the four jurisdictions of American Samoa, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. In Maine, the Attorney General is selected by secret ballot of the legislature and in Tennessee, by the state Supreme Court. In the District of Columbia, the Mayor appoints the Attorney General whose powers and duties are similar to those of the Attorneys General of the states and jurisdictions.

One has to wonder if this will have any impact on turnout in the DC election. Statehood is a top-of-the-list issue to DC voters, and they will likely find excitement in measures that are perceived as more power for your vote.
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