AP – Bill limiting AG Jim Hood’s power dies for breaking rules

A bill to limit Attorney General Jim Hood’s power died Thursday after it was found to violate parliamentary rules in the Mississippi House. But Hood isn’t in the clear yet.

House Speaker Philip Gunn, R-Clinton, said he had no choice but to kill his own bill, after experts found that it was written in a way that broke rules. Rep. Cecil Brown, D-Jackson, raised the objection that killed the bill, after Democrats spent nearly two hours questioning House Judiciary A Chairman Mark Baker, R-Brandon.

“My desire is to follow the rules and the point of order was taken, even though it was my bill,” Gunn said after the ruling.

The bill would have let statewide elected officials and agency heads hire their own lawyers when they found that the attorney general couldn’t adequately represent them. It would have required legal contracts worth $100,000 or more to be posted on the Internet. Bills to limit Hood’s powers also have been filed in the Senate.

Republicans have been trying for years to limit the power of Hood, now the lone statewide elected Democrat.

AP
2/9/12