Josh Kaul, the only announced Dem candidate for AG next year, says he’s spending the early stages of his campaign meeting people, raising money and drawing a contrast with incumbent Brad Schimel.

And he says those differences are stark.

“Far too much of his focus has been on helping powerful special interests,” said Kaul, whose mother Peg Lautenschlager held the office from 2003-2007.

Kaul knocked Schimel’s focus on creating an office of solicitor general, saying the Republican spent the first two years of his term suing the Obama administration. He took particular issue with Schimel challenging a rule doubling to almost $47,500 the maximum salary an employee could earn mandatory overtime.

He also criticized the decision to spend $10,000 on challenge coins and the agency’s continued struggles with a backlog of untested rape test kits.

Kaul, a former federal prosecutor who was part of the legal team that challenged the state’s voter ID law, said the backlog should be addressed with more urgency.

“It speaks to his misplaced priorities,” Kaul said.

State GOP spokesman Alec Zimmerman charged Kaul has built his career as an attorney for special interests and Washington, D.C., insiders.

“By contrast, Attorney General Brad Schimel has fought for Wisconsin families by improving public safety, upholding the rule of law, and stopping federal overreach from Washington,” Zimmerman said.

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