Circuit Judge Chris Carnahan of Conway has ruled that Andy Shock could run for Faulkner County justice of the peace even though he holds a full-time paid state job as a gubernatorial appointee to the state Parole Board.

The Constitution prohibits a county office-holder from being appointed to a civil office such as parole board. Chris Burks, the Little Rock lawyer who challenged Shock’s candidacy, said the judge had ruled that the Constitution didn’t prohibit someone who was a parole Board member already from running for a county office. Burks said his clients will appeal the ruling, which he contends violates a voter-approved constitutional amendment.

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His argument here.

The case has political overtones.

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Carnahan is judge by appointment of Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson and Shock is a Republican candidate and former Faulkner sheriff.

Burks had asked for Carnahan to get off the case, but he refused.  Burks contends Carnahan, a former state Republican Party official, owes his appointment to local support from Shock and former Prosecutor Cody Hiland, a Republican who now is U.S. attorney in Little Rock.

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The Log Cabin Democrat notes that Burks’ clients include Shelly Carpenter, who’s the daughter of Shock’s opponent Johnny Brady, She filed a complaint with the Election Commission.