opinion | Washington Post GOP Primary Endorsement for Maryland Attorney General: Jim Shalleck

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Democrats hold the office of Attorney General in Maryland almost 70 years, a winning streak that is likely to continue this year if Republicans nominate an extremist with past ties to a racist hate group, which is possible. Luckily for the GOP primary voters, they have a much better choice on the ballot: Jim Schalleck.

Mr. Shalleck, who was a local, state and federal prosecutor for 24 years, is a conservative who considers himself a traditional Republican, which means in part he hasn’t fallen for the Trumpist fantasy that the 2020 presidential election was stolen . In addition, he is a lawyer with a wide courtroom experience, decency and commitment to public service. Before resigning to seek his party’s nomination for attorney general, he was president of the Montgomery County Election Committee six years; In 2014 he ran unsuccessfully for the district board.

He has our support in the July 19 Republican primary in Maryland.

The Maryland Attorney General’s office, staffed by more than 450 attorneys and assistants, has a wide range of responsibilities, including antitrust litigation and prosecutions; civil rights; consumer protection; investment and Medicaid fraud; and environmental crime. She also represents the state on a range of matters, from contract disputes to criminal proceedings.

Mr. Shalleck’s own priority is narrower – addressing the rise in violent crime in Maryland, particularly in Baltimore and Prince George’s County. That’s no doubt a serious concern for residents like Mr. Shalleck who are troubled by the everyday carnage.

Law enforcement is not the focus of the Attorney General’s mandate—in Maryland, as in most states, it is carried out at the local level by elected prosecutors. Still, Mr. Shalleck says he would second 40 to 50 attorneys from the attorney general’s office to assist local prosecutors, something the state allows Constitution only if authorized by the governor or the legislature. His plan would divert resources from critical areas of the attorney general’s office. However, given the horrific number of murder and gun crime cases, it could make perfect sense — especially in a jurisdiction like Prince George’s where prosecutors are struggling to cope with their caseloads.

We’re afraid Mr. Shalleck’s vision of the spot is a bit limited. But he cannot be denied prosecutorial experiencestints as head of the homicide bureau in the Bronx, dealing with white-collar crime in the New York State Attorney General’s office, and working for the federal antitrust agency at the Justice Department.

In any case, his background, worldview and priorities are far more relevant and grounded in reason than that of his main GOP rival Michael Anthony Peroutka, a debt collection attorney who served a tenure on Anne Arundel County Council. Mr Peroutka who was active in a racist group called The League of the SouthHe insists that “Dixie” is the true national anthem; believes that public schools are steeped in communist dogma and should be dismantled; believes that Christian commandments should take precedence over state law; and is a believer in creationism. He is unfit for public office.


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