Supporters come out for judicial candidate
PLACERVILLE – Attorney Steven Bailey formally announced Tuesday night that he will run to replace retiring South Lake Tahoe Superior Court Judge Jerald Lasarow, who last year announced his plans to retire after 17 years on the bench.
Bailey, who currently is running unopposed, has several high-profile backers, including El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pierson. Pierson was on hand to speak at the formal announcement party at a Placerville pizzeria.
“I told Steve early on that I would either stay out of it altogether or support him in a big way,” Pierson said. “I have chosen to actively campaign to make sure he is elected.”
Pierson said he chose to support the 18-year veteran lawyer because of his temperament, patience and good judgment, as well as his tough stance on the death penalty.
Before entering law school while supporting a young family in the 1980s, Bailey served as campaign manager for a voter-approved initiative that strengthened California’s death penalty in 1978.
Four Bailey supporters who spoke to the Mountain Democrat gave the same answer when asked why he would make a good judge: “Because he’s honest and he’s fair.”
DA investigator Greg Murphy, one of three sheriff’s deputies wounded in last year’s Shingle Springs shootout, was quoted as saying: “Law enforcement genuinely respects Steve, and I know he will make an outstanding judge.”
When Bailey addressed the crowd of 75 or so supporters Tuesday, he said his philosophy as judge would be to serve the people of El Dorado County and not legislate from the bench.
“I realize that as judge, I will be there to make sure the law is applied correctly and fairly,” he added.
On his campaign Web site, stevenbaileyforjudge.com, Bailey states that in addition to the death penalty, he is a strong backer of California’s three-strikes law, as well as Proposition 36, which provides drug rehabilitation for nonviolent offenders. The site describes Bailey as being conservative, decisive and fair.
Other supporters of Bailey include state Sen. Dave Cox, state assemblymen Ted Gaines and Alan Nakanishi, El Dorado County supervisors Ron Briggs and Rusty Dupray, former supervisor Ray Nutting, retired judge Gregory Haas and the El Dorado County Republican Central Committee.
The final filing date to run for the seat is Feb. 11. The election will be held in early June.
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