Attorney general candidates agree prosecutor's office should remain

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Republican Jeffrey N. Pritzker and Democrats Sen. Brian E. Frosh and Del. Jon S. Cardin (L to R), who are running for Maryland attorney general, spoke at a forum at Towson University Thursday night. The race's fourth candidate, Democrat Del. Aisha N. Braveboy, did not attend.

Three of the candidates to become Maryland's next attorney general said Thursday that they are opposed to the incumbent's suggestion to abolish the state prosecutor's office to save money.

Democrats Brian E. Frosh and Jon S. Cardin and Republican Jeffrey N. Pritzker spoke at Towson University at a forum sponsored by the Baltimore Jewish Council. A fourth candidate, Democrat Aisha N. Braveboy, did not attend.


Frosh, Cardin and Pritzker all said they do not support Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler's proposal to eliminate the office of the state prosecutor, which handles political corruption cases, to save money. Gansler is a Democrat running for governor in the June 24 primary.

Frosh, a state senator from Montgomery County, said he understands Gansler's reasoning, but the office is needed. "I am vehemently opposed," said Frosh. "It's a bad idea," Cardin agreed.


They were offered the opportunity to say what made them qualified to be attorney general and distinguished them from their opponents.

Pritzker, a Towson lawyer who is unopposed in the Republican primary, said Maryland would benefit from having an independent attorney general who isn't a member of the majority Democratic party. "There is an R instead of a D before my name, which is unusual and important," he said. He is seeking to become the first Republican to be elected Maryland attorney general since 1918.

Frosh cited his more than 30 years' experience practicing law as well as initiatives he has spearheaded in the General Assembly, such as the state's sweeping new gun control law and environmental protection legislation.

Cardin, a state delegate from Baltimore County, cited his "passion, conviction, vision" as attributes he would bring to the job. He also said he understands the legal challenges posed by technology, citing his efforts to pass legislation against cyber bullying and so-called revenge porn.

All three candidates said they would strive to coordinate with local prosecutors around the state, as well as with federal officials. "It's like herding cats," Cardin said of the need to cooperate.