In siding with Rex Duncan, district attorney for Osage and Pawnee counties, Oklahoma County Special Judge Donald Easter made a good call. In declining to appeal the judge’s decision, Attorney General Scott Pruitt made a better one.
After beginning his term as district attorney, Duncan was mobilized for military service in Afghanistan with the Oklahoma Army National Guard. A legal opinion issued by Pruitt’s office declared Duncan vacated his elected position when he went on active duty, saying it violated a state constitutional prohibition on holding two offices as the same time.
Duncan took the issue to court, where Judge Easter ruled that a federal law pre-empted state law and allowed Duncan to serve in the military without vacating his elected office.
This is a victory for those serving in the military and for common sense. We’re glad Pruitt isn’t spending more taxpayer dollars on an appeal.