To the editor:
I am a proud and loyal Democrat. But sometimes party loyalty demands too much.
I encourage all voters in Columbia County, but particularly Democrats, to support the reelection of District Attorney Paul Czajka. Paul Czajka is an excellent DA; he is fair and nonpartisan in how he administers his office. Mr. Czajka has assembled a professional, compassionate and skilled staff. Most important, he has shown he has the experience and knowledge to do the job and do it well.
Eugene Keeler, the Democratic candidate, who I have known for many years, has a long history as both a failed District Attorney and public defender. He mishandled the Wyley Gates case in 1987 — a quadruple homicide — which resulted in the defendant being convicted of conspiracy to commit murder despite the overwhelming evidence that he committed the crime.
Keeler was removed from cases for neglecting his clients when he was a county public defender and had the responsibility to represent indigent criminal defendants.
As someone who has lived in Columbia County and practiced law in this region for many decades, I feel a strong obligation to uphold the integrity of our legal and judicial process. The person who serves as District Attorney must have the capabilities of assembling information to decide who is prosecuted, if anyone, and for an alleged crime. It is critical that we have a person in that role who is experienced, capable, competent and ethically grounded.
I know that Paul Czajka is that man. I urge all voters of Columba County to cast their vote on Nov. 5 for District Attorney Paul Czajka.