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Mary Beenken, Published October 26 2010

Fargo lawyer challenges incumbent North Dakota attorney general

A Fargo lawyer is attempting to unseat longtime incumbent Republican Wayne Stenehjem in this year’s race for North Dakota attorney general.

Democrat Jeanette Boechler is challenging Stenehjem, who has held the post for 10 years.

Stenehjem said that, as attorney general, his primary concern has been maintaining and increasing safety for North Dakota residents.

“I think what North Dakotans care about most is public safety,” he said.

According to Stenehjem, his track record for enacting and enforcing laws that address issues such as methamphetamine and prescription drug abuse will help him in the upcoming election.

Boechler, however, disagrees. She points specifically to Stenehjem’s sex offender registration system, which has failed to ensure that sex offenders who move across state borders register in their new states.

“She was very distressed at the fact that North Dakota’s incumbent has not even attempted to comply with the sex offender act of 2006,” said David Thompson, Boechler’s campaign manager.

Stenehjem agrees that North Dakotans are not safe from all possible dangers. However, he said he can most effectively solve these problems.

Much of Boechler’s work as a lawyer was focused on ensuring safety for workers and helping those who worked in unsafe conditions.

According to Thompson, Boechler plans to address safety for North Dakotans using the background she has acquired as a private attorney, working with people on a personal level.

“She’s running for office this time to bring a real-world, practical perspective to the office of attorney general,” Thompson said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Mary Beenken at (701) 235-7311