Law & Disorder: Georgia’s Battle Over Prosecutorial Power


Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp delivers the State of the State speech, Thursday, Jan. 11, 2024, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
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Georgia Governor Brian Kemp has activated a new law allowing a state panel to discipline or even oust prosecutors. The move could impact Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis’ legal actions against former President Donald Trump.

Kemp argues the law targets prosecutors who fail to enforce laws linking it to a national rise in crime. But critics see it as a political maneuver, especially since last year’s attempt to get the Prosecuting Attorneys Qualification Commission up and running hit a roadblock when the state Supreme Court expressed concerns about its jurisdiction. Despite this, the new legislation sidesteps the need for Supreme Court approval, raising eyebrows and likely prompting legal challenges.

The new law mandates that district attorneys individually assess each case, barring them from dismissing whole categories of offenses. This is seen as an attempt to limit prosecutorial discretion and to spark debate about its implications on justice and political interference.

Proponents of the law insist it is about ensuring law and order. Opponents argue it’s a veiled attack on Democratic prosecutors like Willis.

Click play to listen to the report from AURN White House Correspondent Ebony McMorris. For more news, follow @E_N_McMorris & @aurnonline.

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