DA Clegg vows to decline police union support
Aug 25, 2020 6:33 am
Ariél Zangla is reporting for the Daily Freeman Ulster County District Attorney David Clegg has pledged to not accept campaign endorsements or contributions from police unions. Clegg joined more than 40 prosecutors nationwide, including district attorneys and a state attorney general, in signing a letter affirming that promise. The letter, released August 24, was circulated and organized by The Justice Collaborative. The collaborative is a criminal justice advocacy organization, and argues that elected prosecutors need to maintain their professional and ethical independence from law enforcement. "It's mainly about building trust for the community," Clegg said of his reason for signing the letter. He said people might see campaign contributions as a way to influence how prosecutors do their jobs. Democrat Clegg started his first four-year term in January; he has not taken any campaign contributions from police unions and will not in the future. The only other New York prosecutor to sign the letter was Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, also a Democrat. Clegg said he wants Ulster County residents to know they can trust what his office does. The letter states that in recent weeks, police unions have been the "most vocal opponents of reasonable reforms and necessary changes." It also states the signers cannot ignore the conflicts of interest that campaign contributions from law enforcement can create. Read the full story in the Daily Freeman.