Wyoming secretary of state seeks judge job

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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - Wyoming Secretary of State Ed Buchanan says he feels called to seek a judicial appointment and isn't applying for the job lightly.

Buchanan said in a statement Thursday he wouldn't pursue a job as a judge if he didn't think his staff could transition smoothly to an appointed secretary of state.

Buchanan is among three finalists the state Judicial Nominating Commission has chosen for a state circuit court vacancy in Buchanan's home town of Torrington.

Eighth Circuit Judge Randal Arp plans to retire in July. The Eighth Circuit covers Goshen, Niobrara and Platte counties.

Gov. Matt Mead appointed Buchanan secretary of state in March 2018 after Ed Murray resigned. Buchanan is a Republican former state lawmaker who easily won election in November.

Gov. Mark Gordon will choose between Buchanan, Cheyenne attorney Patricia Bennett and Torrington attorney Nathaniel Hibben to fill the court vacancy.