OC Judge Rules Pete Hardin Broke the Law with Ballot Statement

    DA Todd Spitzer won the lawsuit after his challenger's ballot statement referred to Spitzer's office, which was against the law.

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    An Orange County Superior Court judge gave Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer a win. The judge ruled in favor of Spitzer’s challenge of Pete Hardin’s ballot statement.

    Hardin had submitted his ballot statement which repeatedly blasted Spitzer’s department as being “plagued with scandals” and sexual harassment issues. Spitzer immediately sued to stop the statement from moving forward. Spitzer asserted that California state law forbade ballot statements from referencing “other candidates for that office” or “another candidate’s qualifications, character or activities.”

    The judge ordered an entire paragraph on Hardin’s ballot statement to be deleted as a result. Spitzer’s re-elect campaign responded by calling Hardin a “cheat.”

    “Pete the cheat is at it again,” Spitzer’s re-elect campaign said in a statement. “This time flagrantly breaking election law and then losing badly in court. This is the same unqualified and dishonest candidate who was kicked out of the military for adultery and then left the OCDA’s office in disgrace after supervisors caught him hitting on defendants and witnesses. Hardin’s disturbing pattern of behavior also includes covering up the shooting of a Naval corpsman, lying on his resume, and repeatedly lying to media and voters about his past conduct.”

    George Yin, Hardin’s attorney, criticized the judge’s ruling, claiming Hardin never mentioned Spitzer by name.

     “A candidate’s views on the issues does not constitute an attack on an opponent,” Yin said. “All these statements are demonstrably true. 

    Meanwhile, Mark Rosen, Spitzer’s attorney, focused on painting Hardin’s ballot statement as an attack on Spitzer. Rosen claimed that attacking the DA’s office was an equivalent to attacking the sitting DA.

    “The statement was written to mislead the voters,” Rosen said. “It’s an attack on Mr. Spitzer’s character, an attack on his activities as DA, it’s intention to do that.”

    SoCal Daily Pulse

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