LITTLE ROCK, AR - Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee has asked a state judge to dismiss a lawsuit that accuses him of breaking the law when his administration destroyed government-owned hard drives as he left office in January.
Jim Parsons of Bella Vista filed a lawsuit last month in Pulaski County Circuit Court accusing Huckabee of violating the state's Freedom of Information Act and a state law prohibiting damaging a computer without authorization. Parsons' suit asks the court to "send a message that destroying public records is not the standard operating procedure" of elected officials when they leave office.
Huckabee is running for the Republican nomination for president.
Huckabee said in court papers filed today that Parsons' lawsuit violates the qualified immunity public servants are granted in Arkansas under the state's constitution. He also said Parsons had not served him in the lawsuit.
Huckabee left office January 9. He has defended the destruction of the drives and said it was done to protect sensitive information, such as employees' or constituents' Social Security numbers and credit card information.
The state's Ethics Commission had previously dismissed two complaints that Parsons had filed against Huckabee over the incident.