The Peach state has joined the chorus of states who are tired of prosecutors who are too lenient with crime. On Friday, Gov. Brian Kemp (R – Georgia) signed into law a bill that creates an independent commission to punish and remove prosecutors who do not perform their duties.
Kemp, at the signing ceremony held in Savannah, Ga. said: “I will not stand by while rogue or unqualified prosecutors refuse uphold the laws.” “Today we send a message to criminals that we won’t sacrifice public safety to let prosecutors off the hook.”
Georgia isn’t the only one, of course. Georgia is not alone, of course.
The law stipulates that prosecutors cannot dismiss whole categories of cases without probable cause, a tactic used by Democrats.
The AP reports that “experts have said it is unrealistic to consider every case individually, as prosecutors reject many more cases than the ones they charge.” It’s not clear if the new legislation will lead prosecutors to change their behavior or simply avoid discussing charging decisions publicly.
The Democrats in Georgia, however, are furious because they will not be able get away with giving criminals a free pass or a slap of the wrist.
Deborah Gonzalez, District Attorney for Athens Clarke and Oconee Counties said: “I am strongly opposed to an excessive and unnecessarily commission. The district attorneys already have to be accountable through existing laws and the democratic process that is currently used in holding elections.”
Gonzalez occupies an unusual position, as she represents a district that includes one of the more left-wing counties in the country (Athens Clarke) and another that is a stronghold for Republicans (Oconee). She is also a Democrat and many people believe she’s a target for Republicans because of her left-leaning politics.
Fani “Look me!” Willis, a Fulton County DA, is also enraged by the new law. Willis: “I’m going after Trump!” She used the platinum album of all of the Democrats’ greatest songs to express her disapproval of the law.
Willis also condemned the measure and called it a racism attack after voters in the state elected 14 nonwhite DAs. This is interesting, because the new legislation does not mention the race or ethnicity of DAs that might be facing the new commission.
The AP notes that “some have viewed this law as Republican retribution” against Willis who is considering criminal prosecutions against Donald Trump for interference in Georgia’s 2020 elections. This may be true, to a certain extent. However, Democrats in Georgia considered taking similar measures after the Glynn county district attorney botched the murder case of Ahmaud arbery in 2019.
This new Georgia law that takes effect on July 1 is part of an overall positive trend to put a brake on prosecutor’s who do not prosecute. We hope it will help stop the crime wave that has swept our country.