Race for Pinal County attorney intense

By Lindsey Collom

The Arizona Republic

The Pinal County attorney’s race began on a contentious note, its pitch set in part by an incumbent sheriff looking to oust his political rival.

And the tone has only intensified leading up to the Nov. 6 election.

Pinal County Attorney Walsh

County Attorney James Walsh, a Democrat, has spent most of his re-election campaign defending his record and refuting statements made about his office by Republican challenger Michael “Lando” Voyles, a former assistant Maricopa County prosecutor.

Voyles is running on a combined law-enforcement ticket with Sheriff Paul Babeu. From inception, the “Law & Order Team” has portrayed Walsh as soft on crime and the Babeu-Voyles partnership as a necessary one to carry out justice.

At stake is a chance to lead the Pinal County Attorney’s Office, an agency of 150 employees — 44 are attorneys — with an annual budget of $14 million. The office prosecutes felony and misdemeanor crimes, provides legal advice to elected and appointed county officials, and represents the county in civil litigation, among other duties.

Walsh, 68, of Oracle, is in his first term as Pinal County attorney, having been appointed to the post in 2007 and elected the following year. Before his appointment, Walsh spent three years as chief deputy attorney general to Terry Goddard. He worked previously in private practice and specialized in legislative representation, governmental relations and alternative dispute resolution.


Also: CD1 forum lively/Casa Grande Dispatch

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