Wednesday, February 20, 2008

HCCLA Makes a Stand

The Chronicle is reporting that the Harris County Criminal Lawyer's Association has sent a letter to Governor Perry requesting that a Special Prosecutor be assigned to investigate Chuck Rosenthal; and that he go ahead and appoint Chuck's replacement.

Although I like the principled ideals behind the request, I'm not too optimistic about Perry paying any attention to it. Especially not in regards to a quick appointment for the replacement.

My prediction is that Perry will ultimately appoint the winner of the Republican Primary after it is decided, so that person can run against Clarence Bradford, as an incumbant. There's no political incentive for him to do otherwise, actually. It doesn't benefit him. It doesn't benefit the Republican Party.

And Bert has been the "acting D.A." for three days now, and he has still yet to accidentally burn down the building. He's a steady hand who can hold things together until the governor gets around to making an appointment.

Another reason I'm not optimistic about the Governor moving too quickly on an appointment is my memory of how long the 228th, the 183rd, and the 178th sat open without him appointing anyone.

As to the issue of the Special Prosecutor to look into Rosenthal's actions, that's a little different. I'm not certain that the governor was the right person to send that particular request to.

It seems to me (if memory serves me), that the District Court judges have always been the one who appointed a special prosecutor if an Assistant District Attorney was accused of criminal wrongdoing. Why would that be different if it was the elected?

I'm just curious.


Michael said...

Question: Is the HCCLA open to prosecutors, defense lawyers, or both?

Anonymous said...

Finally, an analysis of yours that is non-partisan and correct.

On a different note, I took one of Judge Lykos' statements at the debate last night to imply that the change in leadership she was referring to would mean a clean sweep of division and bureau chiefs. Did you get the same idea?

Anonymous said...

Ok - I'm confused.

Why request a special prosecutor to investigate Chuck Rosenthal now? He's gone. It's over (I hope)...can't we move on?

Seriously - I'm confused - I don't get it...can someone explain it?

Murray Newman said...

Michael, I would think that HCCLA would not be very excited about someone from within the Office holding the caretaker position. However, I'm sure that they would remain open minded to listening to who that person would be. Some of the ADAs are less controversial than others.

Anon, I'm glad you finally liked one of my articles. I do have to ask though why everyone thinks I should be running the one blog on the internet that ISN'T biased? :-)

I think Lykos would fire the division chiefs and bureau chiefs before she sits down at her desk on the first day. I then think she will have a list of all the people who donated to Kelly's campaign and fire them, as well. She will then go through the office directory and fire any face that she saw wearing a Kelly Siegler sticker.

And sadly, I'm not being sarcastic on this one. I think those who know her will back me up on it.

Soon, the highest ranking person within her office won't have over 5 years under their belt as a prosecutor.

Anonymous said...

HCCLA is open to defense lawyers only.

Anonymous said...

Is there an official or unofficial policy or general attitude regarding ADA's donating to a specific candidate?

If was an ADA and Lykos wins the primary, I would cut a fat check the next week. I'm a democrat defense attorney, and still might.

Anonymous said...

Can I nominate a "defense" attorney for the Hector Heathcoat award? There are some who do more to secure convictions than any of the current nominees.

jigmeister said...

Anon: You missed the first award. Skip Cornelius was awarded that honor last month. And, by the way, he is a very good lawyer.

And there is no policy about donating money to anyone you want, but if Lykos wins the primary, everyone will be saving all the money they can...Hanging out a shingle isn't cheap.

Ron in Houston said...


With the Dems turning out early voters at a rate of 3 or 4 to 1, it could very well be D.A. Bradford come November.

It's going to be an interesting election cycle.

Murray Newman said...

I think what you bring up is probably going to be the key issue as to EVERYTHING regarding the future of the D.A.'s Office. I'm going to analyze that issue in a little bit.

Anonymous said...

Yes, and don't forget the poll that insight did on this very race, boiling things down between Kelly Rosenthal (oops, my bad) and the Chiefster. Guess who won?

By the way, if there is no elected, there is no authority for a local district judge to appoint a pro tem or special prosecutor. The Gov can merely suggest to the AG that the AG's office go back and finish what they started.

I think I'm going to start my own blog for the next two weeks to balance out yours with some fairness and reality. It will be called Reality and Life at the Harris County Criminal Justice Center.

ta ta


Murray Newman said...

Well, um, Snookems,
I'm not really all that sure that the website run by Isaiah Carey is exactly what one would consider to be "scientific" when it comes to political polling. But if it makes you feel better, keep on believing in it.

Good for you on your ambition to run a new blog! There's no shortage of conversation or topics around here lately. I look forward to reading it.

Not a very original name, though. I think I heard of another website with a really similar name.

Anonymous said...

Not a very original name, though. I think I heard of another website with a really similar name.

Yeah, but like another organization we all know and love, it is arrogant, short-sighted and wow, "I've been working here 29 years and I just discovered Houston, there may be a problem" with the HCDA's office.

Murray Newman said...

Anon 7:06 PM,
Is that you, Snookems?