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John Ladenburg drops out of Attorney General race, will instead run for state Supreme Court

Post by Peter Callaghan / The News Tribune on June 29, 2011 at 11:08 am | 23 Comments »
June 29, 2011 4:38 pm

He hasn’t seemed all that excited about the attorney general race lately and this must be why.

While he had filed with the Public Disclosure Commission and said he was thinking about a campaign he has made twice before, former Pierce County Prosecutor John Ladenburg said he will shift instead to the Supreme Court.

Supreme Court candidate John Ladenburg (campaign photo)

He did not say which seat on the court he might pursue but a spokesman said he would not file against anincumbent and expects there to be vacancies next year. At least one will be the seat now held by Justice Gerry Alexander who must retire this year when he reached the age of 75. Gov. Chris Gregoire can appoint a replacement but that person would have to run in 2012.

The other two justices with terms expiring next year are Tom Chambers and Susan Owens.

The attorney general’s office will be open next year because incumbent Rob McKenna will instead run for governor. The two announced candidates to replace him are two members of the King County Council, Republican Reagan Dunn and Democrat Bob Ferguson. McKenna ran for the office while on the King County council as well.

Here’s the press release sent out this morning:


John Ladenburg Announces Campaign for Supreme Court

Ladenburg shuts down Attorney General exploratory committee

Tacoma—John Ladenburg, former 14 year Pierce County Prosecutor and 8 year Pierce County Executive, announced today that he is forming a campaign for Supreme Court this week.

“After talking to hundreds of lawyers around the state many of them encouraged me to run for Supreme Court because of my broad experience in law,” Ladenburg stated. “With multiple vacancies expected in 2012 on the Supreme Court it is important to have experienced attorneys on the bench – I bring over three decades of law experience as an attorney who has been a prosecutor, a defense attorney and a civil trial attorney.”

Ladenburg had to choose to run for either Supreme Court or Attorney General.

“I spent months deliberating but I feel confident in my decision,” Ladenburg said. “The Supreme Court needs candidates with broad experience in law. While I have experience in public policy that would benefit an Attorney General, my passion is in the law and the Supreme Court needs experienced attorneys as it goes through expected big transitions.”

As Pierce County Prosecutor for fourteen years, Ladenburg was tough on crime. He created nationally recognized programs cracking down on drug dealers and gang members, co-founded the Safe Streets neighborhood watch program, and helped create the Crystal Judson Family Justice Center to help domestic violence victims. Ladenburg has trial experience in both civil and criminal cases and is one of less than five lawyers in the State to try a death penalty case as a defense attorney and as a prosecutor.

Ladenburg is a champion for children. He wrote the nation’s first law forcing sex predators to register on a public list after being released from jail. He also wrote another law preventing sex predators deemed too dangerous for the public to be kept in jail instead of being released to hurt more children.

Ladenburg ran unsuccessfully in 2008 against Rob McKenna. He currently works with his sons in the “Ladenburg Law” law firm in Tacoma and also is the managing partner of a governmental affairs consulting firm. Ladenburg does not plan on challenging any current incumbent.

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