Republican Challenger Alleges Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra Is Unqualified to Hold Office

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California Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra’s campaign manager disputed allegations in a lawsuit filed Tuesday by Republican challenger Eric Early that the incumbent does not meet qualifications to hold office and should be kept off the November ballot.

The legal challenge alleges that Becerra is constitutionally ineligible to hold the office because he was an “inactive” member of the California Bar from 1991 to 2016, most of which was time he served in Congress.

The lawsuit argues that state law requires those holding the office to have been “admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the state for a period of at least five years immediately preceding his election or appointment.”

Some Republicans briefly raised similar concerns before Becerra’s appointment by Gov. Jerry Brown was confirmed by legislators in January 2017. A decade earlier, a judge dismissed a similar lawsuit filed by GOP activists against Brown when he was elected as attorney general.

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