Sears endorsing Hodges for attorney general

Former Georgia Supreme Court Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears is endorsing former prosecutor Ken Hodges in the Democratic race for attorney general.

Sears, the state’s first female member of  the  Supreme Court, retired this summer. She joins former Atlanta mayor and U.N. ambassador Andrew Young as top Georgia Democrats to endorse Hodges.

Hodges faces state Rep. Rob Teilhet (D-Smryna) in next year’s primary. Teilhet has been endorsed by Sen. Emanuel Jones (D-Decatur), the chairman of the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus, as well as a several top Democrats from the Savannah area.

“Ken has the legal abilities, backbone and character critical for a strong attorney general,” Sears said in a statement.

Sears was the first African-American female in the nation to become a state’s chief justice when she was sworn in in 2005.

“As a prosecutor in South Georgia, I fought for the rights of victims and worked to create a safer place to live, and as attorney general, I will continue to do that for all Georgians,” said Hodges, the former Albany prosecutor.

20 comments Add your comment

Kenny Ramsbottom

September 15th, 2009
1:18 pm

Wow, Hodges is even more liberal that I thought! Apparently Ms. Sears is not aware of the prosecutor misconduct case pending against Ken Hodges before the 11th. Circuit Court of Appeals. Endorsing Ken Hodges is like endorsing Michael Nifong.

Bella

September 15th, 2009
2:29 pm

If you want to know about Ken Hodges, check out http://swgapolitics.com/index/2009/05/09/what-if-there-were-no-free-speech/.
Georgians want to clean up our government, no more corrupt politicians!

Jack Smith

September 15th, 2009
8:47 pm

Hodges’ career is a litany of one ethical lapse after another. A true disgrace who would sell his mother for a dishonest dollar–voters might want to investigate how he got his present job….

Jack Smith

September 15th, 2009
8:51 pm

Jason

September 16th, 2009
12:12 am

As the state’s chief justice, how can Ms. Sears be not aware of Ken Hodges’ case?
She must have know that but still endorses Hodges.

[...] know that former Georgia Supreme Court chief justice Leah Ward Sears on Tuesday endorsed former prosecutor Ken Hodges in the Democratic race for attorney [...]

Renee

September 16th, 2009
3:23 pm

Ken Hodges is a good man. It is obnoxious that someone would be so disgraceful to make comments about his family and his mother. He did nothing wrong in the Phoebe case and everyone from South Georgia knows it, and once the 11th Circuit clears his name everyone will know these were just political rantings of his enemies.

Ryan

September 16th, 2009
10:07 pm

Hodges has the capability and character for a strong Attorney General. He is the only candidate who has argued in front of the Georgia Supreme Court. Good for him!

Charles

September 17th, 2009
1:29 pm

Hodges was the enforcer for a tyrannical health care system in Albany, Ga. He abused his powers as D.A. to persecute his and his benefactors’ personal and political enemies, while true criminals were left free to walk the streets.
After doing Phoebe Putney Hospital’s bidding as D.A., he was rewarded by joining a law firm paid with Phoebe money.
Ken Hodges is an evil, arrogant thug.

Tom

September 18th, 2009
8:27 am

Renee,

You’re clearly oblivious to facts. Everyone in southwest Georgia knows that Dr. Bagnato and Charles Rehberg committed no crimes, but Hodges prosecuted them. Everyone in southwest Georgia knows that Hodges gave Phoebe information regarding who was sending out the anonymous faxes, faxes that were never illegal in the first place. In fact, one of the “victims” of the crime was Rep. Sanford Bishop who was listed as a victim despite having no problems with the faxes. Oh yeah…but there was a crime? Clearly, there wasn’t.

Ken Hodges was an ineffective prosecutor much of the time as District Attorney, and entered into the level of corruption with his relationship with Phoebe. It’s also telling that after he stepped down as Dougherty District Attorney (and saying he wanted to get back into private practice…just a matter of months before announcing for the AG race), he went to work for the Baudino law firm…the same firm that Phoebe employs.

And Justice Sears thinks Hodges has good character? Maybe. Only if you looking to model a corrupt DA for a new Godfather-type movie.

ice

September 23rd, 2009
12:17 pm

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Ken Hodges Fan

September 24th, 2009
9:57 pm

http://www.kenhodges.com

he has one of the best websites i’ve seen!

Charles

September 25th, 2009
12:17 pm

Whoopee frickin’ doo!

Charles

September 28th, 2009
12:13 pm

Enter your comments here
I wonder what insidious deeds Ken “Two Face” Hodges and his campaign backers, including the so-called “not-for-profit” Phoebe Putney Hospital, are up to now.

T.Ruth

October 1st, 2009
8:12 pm

No surprise that Mr. Hodges has a glitzy website. He comes from a wealthy family; has used his connections to advance his career and his net worth and protect his buddies; and has the backing of a a pack of rich and unscrupulous cronies who count on him to serve their interests at the expense of the public.

Mr. Hodges is photogenic and can be charming and charismatic when it suits him, but if you are unlucky enough to scratch the surface of his carefully constructed facade, you will encounter a petty, vindictive, arrogant, self-centered and power-hungry bully who victimized innocent whistle-blowers (and Rehberg and Bagnato aren’t the only ones, only the most visible) while protecting law-breakers who were in his inner circle.

Mr. Hodges is like his website … attractive in appearance yet lacking in credibility.

Charles

October 2nd, 2009
12:25 pm

Yes, that’s why I called him “Two Face,” like D.A. Harvey Dent in “The Dark Knight.” I think it’s a good metaphor. I hope that nickname catches on in the campaign!

Goose

October 31st, 2009
3:11 am

You don’t have to believe the semi-anonymous posters here to get a sense of who Ken Hodges was when he had the power of the District Attorney’s Office. Just read any part of the federal court decision which ripped his ethics to shreds- or, more accurately, held his actions up for public inspection. Here’s a small taste from the ruling (and Ken isn’t appealing it on the merits, only on whether he should be immune from suit even after admitting the wrongdoing, so the 11th Circuit can’t “clear” him, only cloak him with immunity from answering for his misdeeds):

“Upon receipt of the subpoenaed records, Defendant Paulk [Ken Hodges' investigator, acting at his behest] provided the records, including Plaintiff’s personal e-mails, to private civilians, who in turn paid for the information. The subpoenas were never intended to require an appearance before the Grand Jury on any matter pending before a Grand Jury, but were intended to obtain confidential and private records for private civilians.”

“On December 14, 2005, Charles Rehberg was indicted on charges of aggravated assault, burglary and “harassing telephone calls” in Dougherty County. The allegations in the indictment arose from Plaintiff’s alleged interactions with a Dr. James Hotz (the victim). However, the charges against Mr. Rehberg were false. Plaintiff has never been to the home of Dr. Hotz. There is no evidence that Plaintiff committed a burglary or aggravated assault on anybody as he was charged.

Neither the Albany Police Department nor any other police agencies were ever involved in any investigation of this alleged assault or burglary. Defendant Paulk, the Chief Investigator to the District Attorney in the case, testified that he and Mr. Hodges initiated and handled the investigation of Plaintiff supposedly because “of lack of confidence in the City police department to handle it.”

“Defendant Paulk testified before the grand jury as the complaining witness and verified to the grand jury that his testimony consisted of “true and accurate facts based upon the indictment.” Yet, Defendant Paulk has now admitted that he never interviewed any witnesses or gathered any evidence indicating that Plaintiff committed any aggravated assault or burglary.

Based on the investigation conducted by Defendants Paulk, Hodges, and Burke, there was no probable cause to indict Plaintiff on charges of burglary, aggravated assault or “harassing” phone calls.”

United States District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, case number 1:07-CV-22 (WLS)

Vince

January 23rd, 2010
7:56 pm

Has Ken Hodges received any more public endorsements since this one?

Mark

January 31st, 2010
4:14 pm

It is inaccurate for “Goose” to represent the above-quoted passages from Judge Sands’ Order as having been decided “on the merits”. It was a Motion to Dismiss so, by definition, the allegations in the Plaintiffs’ Complaint are assumed to be true for the purposes of deciding whether they have even stated a legal claim. This is made clear in Judge Sands’ footnote. His ruling was a legal question based on the Plaintiffs allegations only, and it has therefore been appealed as an error of law.

Also, it is interesting that many of the AJC articles on this suit fail to fully address the Plaintiffs’ connection to the efforts by attorney Dickie Scruggs, who has since been convicted of attempting to bribe a judge and is currently in federal prison, to target charity hospitals like Phoebe Putney in civil litigation.

Overall, it appears that there are about 5 very active anonymous posters out there who have spent a lot of time and energy bashing Ken and trying to muck up any article which mentions his name on various websites, including “Charles” and many of the other bashers above. These folks are obviously non-objective, to say the least. I would invite voters to consider his real record as a veteran prosecutor who has earned diverse support over the years for his commitment to civil rights and keeping Georgians safe.

Sarah

February 3rd, 2010
5:04 pm

Vince, Yes he has been endorsed by Sam Nunn as well – a great Georgian!