Editorial: Drew Wrigley is the clear choice to continue as North Dakota’s attorney general

Drew Wrigley's extensive law enforcement experience, including twice serving as North Dakota's U.S. attorney, make him uniquely qualified to serve as attorney general.

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Drew Wrigley was the obvious choice when he was appointed North Dakota attorney general in February following the unexpected death of Wayne Stenehjem. And now Wrigley is the obvious choice in the November election to continue in that office.

Wrigley has more than 15 years of law enforcement experience, beginning in the early 1990s as a city prosecutor in Fargo, followed by five years as an assistant district attorney in Philadelphia.

Most significantly, Wrigley is the only North Dakotan to serve two terms as U.S. attorney, having been nominated by two presidents, George W. Bush and Donald Trump.

He’s also well versed in state government, having served two terms as lieutenant governor under former Gov. Jack Dalrymple and deputy chief of staff for John Hoeven when he was governor. Rounding out his resume, Wrigley’s private sector experience includes serving as vice president of compliance and corporate ethics at Noridian, a national Medicare and Medicaid claims processor, as senior manager adviser at Sanford Health and as counsel for his family’s electrical, mechanical and environmental contractor business.

In short, there’s simply no question that Wrigley is qualified to serve as North Dakota’s top lawyer and top law enforcement official, a post he already holds.


Beyond that, Wrigley brings considerable passion and dedication to the job. Drew Wrigley isn’t a seat warmer.

As U.S. attorney, Wrigley was a zealous crime fighter. He led his office’s prosecution of Alfonso Rodriguez for the kidnap and murder of Dru Sjodin, North Dakota’s first and so far only death penalty case. He oversaw a more aggressive program of drug and contraband interdiction.

He showed leadership in cooperation in efforts to ferret out and prosecute internet sex crimes against children, prosecuting North Dakota’s first federal internet child-luring case. He increased prosecution of illegal immigrants at the border and in the state.

Wrigley also intensified the focus on crime on North Dakota’s American Indian reservations. He strictly enforced the Americans with Disabilities Act, taking action against organizations that failed to comply with the law.

Throughout his time in office, Wrigley has been highly visible and accessible, and has pledged to champion North Dakota’s open records law, an important commitment from the officer responsible for keeping government transparent.

Republican Drew Wrigley is the clear and commanding choice for North Dakota attorney general. He's a lawman, perfect for the role.

This endorsement represents the opinion of Forum Communications Co. management.

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