Matt Rourke, Associated Press
Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane speaks during a news conference, Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2015, at the state Capitol in Harrisburg, Pa. Kane said that criminal charges against her are part of an effort by state prosecutors and judges to conceal pornographic and racially insensitive emails they circulated with one another. Kane is charged with leaking grand jury information to a newspaper reporter as payback to a former state prosecutor and then lying about it under oath.

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane's political support has virtually collapsed as she prepares to fight criminal charges that threaten to end her career.

Kane's backing in legal and political circles was tenuous before she was charged in an alleged political payback scheme. Democratic insiders say it has largely crumbled since she was arraigned Aug. 6 on perjury and other charges.

A conviction could force her out of office, cutting short the tenure of the first woman and the first Democrat elected attorney general.

Political leaders from both parties, including Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and House Majority Leader Dave Reed, a Republican, have called on Kane to resign.

Wolf says people's perception of government depends on trust and charges like those that Kane is facing erode that trust.