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Kemp signs oversight bill that takes aim at Gonzalez in Athens, other liberal DAs

Georgia’s latest legislative attempt to oversee and discipline locally elected district attorneys was signed by Gov. Brian Kemp on Wednesday.

Senate Bill 332 attempts to implement rules and procedures for the Prosecuting Attorneys Qualifications Commission (PACQ), an agency created last year by the GOP-led state legislature that, Kemp said, would ensure DAs and solicitors-general “fulfill their constitutional and statutory duties.”

“My No. 1 priority is public safety across our state,” Kemp said last year. “The creation of the PACQ will help hold prosecutors driven by out-of-touch politics than commitment to their responsibilities accountable and make our communities safer.”

But only months after Kemp and lawmakers approved the agency’s creation, the Georgia Supreme Court struck down the agency’s operating rules, which led to the latest attempt by Republican lawmakers to bring its procedures in line with those of other state organizations and commissions.

State Democrats have decried the bill as partisan and as part of a so-called “witch hunt” against Fulton County DA Fani Willis, who has indicted former President Donald Trump and several Republican allies in an alleged attempt to overturn Georgia’s 2020 general election.

Immediately after Kemp’s signing, DeKalb County DA Sherry Boston claimed the agency is a “group of political appointees chosen solely by Republicans.

“[It] has unchecked power to remove prosecutors whose decisions they disagree with, no matter how well a district attorney or solicitor general represents the voters who elected them in the courtroom,” said Boston, who added she and others plan to refile a lawsuit challenging the commission.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee is anticipated to make a ruling this week over whether Willis and/or special prosecutor Nathan Wade — with whom she had a romantic relationship — should be disqualified from their investigation and subsequent indictment of Trump.

Willis is facing allegations she misused taxpayer funds and crossed ethical boundaries during her romantic relationship with Wade.

Kemp has also been critical of Athens-Clarke County District Attorney Deborah Gonzalez, who is now overseeing the case of Laken Riley, the nursing student whose body was found on the University of Georgia campus several weeks ago and whose case has become front and center in the nation’s immigration debate.

Jose Ibarra, a 26-year-old illegal immigrant from Venezuela, has been charged with Riley’s murder.

Last year, an Athens-Clarke County resident filed a lawsuit against Gonzalez, claiming Gonzalez failed to staff her office, prosecute cases and “properly assist victims of serious crimes.”

According to the lawsuit, Gonzalez has failed to attend court hearings, prosecute cases and advise grand juries. The lawsuit claims 726 cases could be dismissed in Oconee County because Gonzalez is not prosecuting them.

The lawsuit also claims that even when Gonzalez prosecutes cases, she provides incomplete or inaccurate evidence and prosecutes cases under expired statutes.


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“[It] has unchecked power to remove prosecutors whose decisions they disagree with, no matter how well a district attorney or solicitor general represents the voters who elected them in the courtroom,”

The problem in Athens Clarke County is that the DA does represent the voters who elected her. The problem is our voter base.

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It is not a bill aimed at Gonzalez or

liberal DA’s. It is aimed at DA’s that are not doing their job; which is prosecuting crimes. Just so happens they are all liberals.

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I'm NOT a Republican. BUT Democrats and liberals are TOO SOFT ON CRIME. I said it once, I'll say it til I close my eyes...COMMITTING CRIME IS OPTIONAL. PUNISHMENT SHOULD BE MANDATORY. No 1st offenders, no plea deals. Make examples out of ALL of the criminals. Dole out punishments equally. Make examples of them all. The ACC Jail is a playground for inmates. All it is, is a vacation where they get FREE healthcare. FREE education. FREE classes. Many get out and end up going right back because the judicial system is too lacks and too soft.

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Free healthcare and free meals. The classes/education may fill the time but NASA is not at the jail recruiting new engineers.

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