Monday, February 24, 2020

Fitch Names Solicitor General

Attorney General Lynn Fitch issued the following statement. 


Attorney General Lynn Fitch announced today the appointment of Kristi Haskins Johnson of Brandon as Mississippi’s first Solicitor General. As Solicitor General, Kristi will be the State’s lead advocate for appellate litigation and will be a key part of the Attorney General’s team for crafting strategy for significant cases.


"I am pleased to add Kristi to the team of highly skilled attorneys and professionals we have assembled at the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office,” said Attorney General Fitch. “States across the nation have relied upon their solicitors general for solid appellate strategy and now Mississippi will have this kind of dedicated and experienced representation, as well. While President Trump has done an incredible job of re-shaping the federal courts, installing 187 judges since he took office, Mississippi needs a top-notch attorney with strong knowledge of appellate practice leading our work to defend our laws."

Kristi Johnson comes to the Attorney General’s Office from her position as an Assistant U.S. Attorney. Prior to that, she was in private practice at Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart in Ridgeland. Kristi did clerkships for Judge Leslie Southwick of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and for Chief Judge Sharion Aycock of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi. She is a graduate of the University of Mississippi and earned her JD at Mississippi College School of Law.

According to the National Association of Attorneys General, 39 states have solicitors general on staff, including Alabama, Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Florida.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is that a 4 star or 5 star general?

Anonymous said...

YAWN, another white face at the top of Mississippi's state government, not very representative of the state's population, where's the diversity?!?!?!?

Anonymous said...

I’m sure they will be very successful in defending new abortion bans.

Anonymous said...

It will be interesting to see how this works out, particularly for the existing criminal division of that office. That division's work is practically entirely appellate work, and its members have always written the briefs and argued the cases in the federal and state appellate courts. That division handles in excess of three hundred cases a year. Not all of them are argued, but they don't know which ones will be argued until after the briefing phase is completed. Will that division be working for this SG now, rather than their own division head? Will the SG argue all of the cases set for argument? If so, will she insist upon approving all briefs before they are filed? The civil litigation division does not have as many appellate cases, but the same questions could be asked about appeals in civil cases. This will be a big change in the attorney general's office. And, Girls Rule!!!!

Anonymous said...

4:10 - state government is plenty diverse; let's don't get carried away.

Ladies In Red said...

Please tell me what this means, "...a key part of the Attorney General’s team for crafting strategy for significant cases."

All Fitch has done so far is put her girl-friends in state employment jobs on the way to PERS retirements.

Anonymous said...

Is this the new Fitch-approach to the old standard office-furniture re-do?

Anonymous said...

Maybe now she can get her website up and running, since she's been in office six weeks.

Anonymous said...

4:56, really? How many statewide elected officials are there, and agency heads?

Anonymous said...

Bobby Moak absolutely represents the "diversity" of the Mississippi Democratic Party.

RankinLawyer said...

This was an excellent choice. Any lawyer who has ever dealt with Kristi Johnson will attest to that. Any person who hasn’t dealt with her would be wise to keep their criticism to themselves or they will certainly be proven wrong.

Anonymous said...

At this rate, there will not be any males left in the AG's office . . .

Anonymous said...

I was told shes only argued one time to the 5th circuit and never to the Mississippi Supreme Court or court of appeals. I need to confirm that. But generally being a good lawyer can’t replace experience. That matters for an sg. Or should matter to everyone bc the sg defends the state in the most important cases. I hope it works out.

Anonymous said...

10:33 - I think the issue here is not who was slud into this new job, but the rationale behind having the position at ALL. Can YOU answer the question posed at 5:01?

Anonymous said...

"crafting strategy for significant cases" seems to scream trying to transition from a law enforcement to a political activist body. what could go wrong.

Anonymous said...

Kristi is a decent enough appointment (though fairly inexperienced), but in previous administrations, the AG was in essence the solicitor general. The AG made decisions on high profile cases, but unlike the last two AGs, Lynn has about as much legal experience as the commenters on this site. She needs an SG because she likely doesn’t understand 99% of the complex litigation that will cross her desk.

As usual with MS, happy to vote for any person that the Republican establishment puts on the ballot regardless of their ability to actually do the job.

Macy Hanson said...

I was adverse to Kristi Johnson in an employment case a few years back. Kristi was sharp, a fine lawyer, and incredibly decent and fair. I believe that she and her husband are also great at cooking barbeque, if my memory serves me correctly. I think they've won awards.

This is a solid choice. Fine litigator.

Anonymous said...

Kristi is very smart and an excellent choice.

Anonymous said...

I guess :did clerkships" is another way of saying "clerked for."

It is interesting that the employees learn about these developments from this website and facebook. Maybe Lynn will show up one day and tell us some news.

Anonymous said...

So what’s the point of this “solicitor general” position then if they are “inexperienced”? I thought that actually was the point. Oh well.

Anonymous said...

I thought we just elected our solicitor general?

Anonymous said...

Could she be any less experienced in appellate work? My God! She has no experience in the United States Supreme Court, and the best I can find, one appearance in the Fifth Circuit, and one appearance in the Mississippi Court of Appeals. And this is the person that is to supposed to be deciding Mississippi's legal strategy in appellate cases? Seriously? If this isn't a sweetheart appointment, I don't know what is.

Anonymous said...

Have you ever known of a football coach who hired somebody to call plays, somebody else to hold team meetings, another person to handle the schedule and another to handle the defense. Meet AG Lynn Fitch. Tried to tell you people the woman is totally inexperienced and hasn't a clue.

Anonymous said...

Kristi is a talented litigator and a person of high integrity.

Anonymous said...

Politicians in Mississippi generally appoint people who look like them to continue their legacy. Phil Bryant was appointed state auditor by a white male. Phil rides that appointment all way to governors mansion. Who does he appoint 90-95% time while he is governor...other white males. No doubt many of them will ride their appointments into higher office. Lynn Fitch is doing what white boys club has done for years...,appoint a younger version of yourself while saying we shouldn’t focus on diversity just hired most qualified person....somebody that looks like you and throw in on or two token appointments along the way.

Anonymous said...

I work for the AGO and I found out about this hire through this website. Thank you Kf.

Anonymous said...

As an insider I can assure you that 9:14 AM has hit the nail on the head.

Anonymous said...

anonymous tip: I’ve been waiting months for an AG Opinion. The AG has only issued a handful of opinions since taking office. Those of us in county government are struggling. Why? Is she afraid to put her name on something?

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