Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt announced today he will seek reelection.
Schmidt, a Republican, made his candidacy official by filing papers today with the Secretary of State’s office to become a candidate for a second four-year term as attorney general. He first was elected in 2010.
“We have focused on doing the work of the attorney general’s office effectively and professionally,” Schmidt said. “We have provided strong leadership for public safety, protected consumers and taxpayers, and stood up against the federal government when it tries to stretch the law to suit its political wishes. I am running for a second term to keep the office focused on those priorities for another four years.”
Schmidt helped lead the successful effort to build a new crime laboratory for the Kansas Bureau of Investigation on the campus of Washburn University. The new facility will replace the current KBI laboratory, which is situated in the basement of a converted school building constructed in the 1920s, and will improve forensic-science services to local law enforcement agencies throughout Kansas while helping educate a new generation of students to become forensic scientists. It is scheduled to open in the fall of 2015.
Attorney General Schmidt also has successfully advocated to overhaul the state’s "Hard 50" murder statute, to strengthen laws against elder abuse, to combat identity theft, to enact an anti-gang RICO statute, to create stronger anti-human trafficking laws, to create the first-ever Child Victims Unit at the KBI, to toughen penalties for stealing taxpayer money from the Medicaid program, and to allow consumers to add their cellphone numbers to the Do-Not-Call list.
Under Schmidt’s leadership to combat fraud, the attorney general’s office has recovered record amounts of money for Kansas consumers and has returned record sums of taxpayer money to the state treasury.
Attorney General Schmidt also has stood strong against federal-government actions that, in the view of many Kansans, exceed federal authority. He has challenged numerous regulatory actions of the Environmental Protection Agency, has fought against the federal health care law often called "Obamacare," has challenged anti-business actions by the National Labor Relations Board, and has sued to block the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service from listing the lesser prairie chicken as a "threatened" species.
Schmidt, of Independence, previously served 10 years as a Kansas State Senator, including 6 years as majority leader. He is a fifth-generation Kansan.