GOP Attorney General Candidates Debate

Republican candidates for attorney general Thursday night criticized the incumbent's handling of the lengthy investigation into the hiring practices of Governor Fletcher's administration.

Candidates seeking the G-O-P nomination for a chance to replace outgoing Attorney General Greg Stumbo said his handling of the look into Fletcher administration hirings seemed politically motivated. Fletcher has maintained the same position since the probe began.

Four attorney general candidates appeared tonight in a Kentucky Educational Television debate, which was broadcast statewide from Lexington five days before the primary election on Tuesday.

Stumbo is a Democrat who is leaving the office after his first term. He is running for lieutenant governor on a ticket with Democratic candidate Bruce Lunsford, a Louisville businessman.

One of the G-O-P candidates, attorney Philip Kimball of Louisville, says the investigation was a waste of time and made Kentucky look bad. Prosecutor Tim Coleman of Morgantown said the investigation appeared to be political in the way it was conducted.

State Representative Stan Lee said he didn't have a problem with the attorney general conducting an investigation but thought the case was politically motivated. Lexington lawyer Jon Larson said he thought the Fletcher investigation was a waste of money.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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