Supporters of sitting Georgia Supreme Court justices facing elections in November were scratching their heads Wednesday at the news that a player in the Bush administration had quietly begun his official campaign to unseat one of the justices.

On Wednesday, Atlanta lawyer Frank B. Strickland confirmed in a prepared statement that J. Michael Wiggins, a former Kilpatrick Stockton associate, Justice Department lawyer and, until recently, the No. 2 legal officer at the Department of Homeland Security, has formed an “exploratory committee” for a high court seat.