Seattle Municipal Court judicial candidate returns money from DUI Lawyers PAC

Tis the judicial election season here in King County, WA.  In case you haven’t followed my blog there are several prominent judicial races in our County.  One of the most highly publicized is in Seattle Municipal Court.  Between incumbent Judge Fred Bonner and the challenger former defense attorney Damon Shadid.  Recently I saw an article in the Seattle Stranger, a local newspaper about this race.

If you follow local politics at all.  Especially these judicial races.  You will know there is a local political action committee called Citizens for Judicial Excellence.  I have written about them before.  Basically they consist of criminal defense attorneys, typically DUI Defense Attorneys.  They have raised a large war chest they sit on and they back certain judicial candidates during these elections.  In the past they have been successful in having the candidates they back win the election.

As in all politics this PAC consisting of DUI Attorneys has caused some debate.  Whether they are truly backing the best candidate or simply one that will be easier on their clients.  I can imagine this can almost cause a backlash in the eyes of the general public for the candidate they are backing.

Imagine being asked why this PAC is backing you financially, and whether you will kowtow to their clients.  If I was a candidate even though it would be flattering to have any PAC endorse and back you I would rather not have this particular one do so.  And this is exactly what candidate Damon Shadid has done.  In fact of the money he received from them he has given back.

And I have to say I think this was not only a brilliant move but probably a tough decision.  I imagine running for any kind of elected position takes money.  And no matter who you are or what race you’re in there is probably never enough.  So giving away money that is probably needed in order to give yourself the best chance of being elected is one smart move.  One that certainly deserves kudos.

Here is the article if you want to read it.

About the author:  Matthew Leyba is a DUI Lawyer in Seattle.  Ranked as one of the best DUI Attorneys in Seattle by his peers.  Matthew exclusively represents clients charged with DUI and DUI related offenses.