The Democratic side of the race for attorney general has formally entered the let’s-you-and-him-fight stage.
This morning, state Rep. Rob Teilhet (D-Smyrna) was getting some decent ink – and more importantly, attention from four TV stations – for a bill that would require police to take DNA samples from anyone arrested on felony charges.
Teilhet’s rival is former Dougherty County district attorney Ken Hodges. His spokesman, Jonathan Williams, couldn’t resist throwing some sand in the works:
“Ken’s a prosecutor, and he’s long supported strong DNA databases. But it’s ironic that, during an election year and in the midst of budget cuts, our opponent would propose an unfunded mandate for law enforcement, when he opposed giving it the money it needed only nine months ago.”
Williams helpfully pointed out that Teilhet voted against last year’s budget bill, which included $24.2 million for Georgia Bureau Investigation crime labs. (Which many local law enforcement authorities say wasn’t nearly enough to process the evidence they send into the system.)
That prompted the following reply from Teilhet campaign manager Rebecca DeHart:
“Clearly that vote has nothing to do with collecting DNA samples upon arrest and Ken Hodges knows it. Maybe he would understand the issues and the legislative process a bit better if he wasn’t so busy having to defend himself against prosecutorial misconduct charges.”
DeHart’s sharp response has to do with this morning’s post on Georgia Public Broadcasting, the Pheobe Putney Health System down in Albany, and a federal lawsuit filed by one of two whistleblowers.
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