When I read about Dan Branch’s announcement of why he is running for attorney general — “I’m running to fight against an overreaching federal government, to fight for open and accountable government, and to preserve limited government in Texas” — it caused me to wonder whether anyone will ever again give, as a reason for running for the office, that he intends to perform the actual duties that the office is supposed to perform.

Here is what the actual jurisdiction of the Office of the Attorney General involves, according to the agency’s website:

–Civil Medicaid fraud
–Financial litigation and charitable trusts
–Open Meetings Act
–Open Records Act
–Child Support enforcement
–Crime victims compensation fund
–Sexual assault prevention
–Represents state agencies in litigation

More broadly, the attorney general is tasked by the state constitution with defending the laws and the Constitution of the State of Texas; representing the State in litigation; and approving public bond issues. Nowhere in here do I see any reference to “fighting against an overreaching federal government.”