ST. PAUL (AP) -- A conservative law center is suing Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, alleging that a lawyer working in his office on climate issues is an improper political plant.

Attorney Pete Surdo is working for Ellison under a fellowship with the State Energy and Environmental Impact Center at New York University's School of Law. The center was funded by billionaire donor Michael Bloomberg to address climate issues.

Doug Seaton of the Upper Midwest Law Center says the connection is improper and unethical. He also says the arrangement violates a state law requiring all lawyers in the attorney general's office to be state-paid.

But Ellison says the arrangement is legal. He says Minnesotans expect an attorney general who enforces environmental law, and he's happy to accept the help.

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