Public Safety Commissioner Steve Simpson indicated Wednesday that he’s considering a race for state attorney general in 2011.
A Gulf Coast attorney, the 50-year-old Simpson was a circuit court judge before being appointed Public Safety commissioner by Republican Gov. Haley Barbour in May 2008.
He has been rumored as a Republican candidate for attorney general in the next statewide elections, and in an interview with the Daily Journal editorial board, he did not dismiss the talk.
“My whole professional life has been in the criminal justice genre,” he said. “It is something I have an interest in.”
Simpson’s father was a longtime member of the state House, and his brother also has served in the House. Steve Simpson served as a parole-probation officer and as an assistant district attorney before being appointed circuit judge by former Gov. Ronnie Musgrove, a Democrat.
Some have speculated that Democratic Attorney General Jim Hood will seek the office of governor in 2011, and Hood has said he’s considering it.
“It would be crazy not to be more excited about a race that did not have an incumbent,” Simpson admitted. “Clearly, that would be a more attractive race for a guy like me who has never run for statewide office if a seasoned incumbent like Jim Hood was not seeking re-election, but it would not be a determinant” on whether he would run.
Bobby Harrison/NEMS Daily Journal