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St. Louis sheriff now allows employees to seek public office

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ST. LOUIS (AP) – St. Louis city’s longtime sheriff is lifting a ban that had kept his employees from running against him during elections.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports it has obtained an order signed by Sheriff James Murphy and distributed to his employees saying deputies now can “seek to be elected St. Louis sheriff while remaining actively employed.”

That order took effect July 1.

Murphy was sworn in as sheriff in January 1989 and has been re-elected six times. He hasn’t said publicly whether he’ll run for re-election next year.

In 2011, Murphy fired now-former deputy Vernon Betts for campaigning for sheriff. Murphy went on to narrowly defeat Betts in the 2012 Democratic primary.

Betts says he’s running in the 2016 primary.
Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch,