The Latest: GOP attorney general nominee ethics panel starts
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on an ethics tribunal weighing claims against a California attorney general candidate (all times local):
Lawyers for a former judge running for California attorney general say ethics claims against him are politically motivated.
The Commission on Judicial Performance heard opening statements and witness testimony Tuesday in a hearing to decide if Steven Bailey used his judicial office in El Dorado County to advance his campaign, improperly accepted gifts and steered business to a firm where his son worked.
Bailey denies wrongdoing.
A lawyer presenting the ethics commission’s case said there is strong evidence his conduct was inappropriate for a judge.
Bailey wasn’t in the courtroom for opening statements but arrived while his lawyers cross examined the first witness. His lawyer told the tribunal Bailey was absent at the start because he was attending to his campaign.
No decision is expected until after the election.
Republicans’ nominee for California state attorney general is facing an ethics tribunal just two months before the November election.
The Commission on Judicial Performance begins considering Tuesday whether former judge Steven Bailey used his office to further his statewide campaign, improperly accepted gifts and steered business to a firm where his son worked.
Bailey denies wrongdoing and blames political gamesmanship. But the hearing in Sacramento creates another hurdle as Bailey tries to unseat Democrat Xavier Becerra, who was appointed to fill a vacancy last year.
No decision is expected until after the election. He could eventually be publicly admonished, but not disqualified from the attorney general’s race.
Bailey was an El Dorado County judge from 2009 through August 2017. He defeated two other rivals to win the nomination in June.