District attorney candidates square off at forum
The candidates for the 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office are united on the major issues, and they had a chance share their points of view at a candidate forum hosted by the League of Women Voters of Arapahoe County.
The forum was Sept. 5 at the Highlands Ranch Library, where about 35 people submitted their questions for Democrat Ethan Feldman and Republican George Brauchler in a session moderated by the league.
The league is paving the way to broaden its reach to Douglas County, said Barbara Barlow, Douglas County liaison for the league. The judicial district covers Arapahoe, Douglas, Elbert and Lincoln counties and is the largest geographical district in Colorado, Barlow said.
The district attorney race is critical this year, she said. The district was thrown into the national spotlight in July with the Aurora theater shootings. The court hearings for defendant James Holmes are under way in Arapahoe County and, while neither candidate was willing to talk about any ongoing trial cases, both faced a question on their position about the death penalty.
Feldman and Brauchler were united in their opinion – they support the death penalty in appropriate cases.
“The (legal) standards to be followed in Colorado are extensive and appropriate,” Feldman said. “The current district attorney is in charge of cases pending.”
Feldman and Brauchler agreed on the right to bear arms and the right to carry a concealed weapon.
When it came to questions about whether or not party affiliation has a place in a courtroom, Feldman, who spent 20 years as an Arapahoe County judge, was firm that party platforms have “no place in the district attorney’s office,” he said.
Brauchler said his goal is to uphold the law and address fiscal responsibility, but was less circumspect about party affiliation.
“We all chose to run as something, so that must matter somewhere,” he said.
Brauchler lives in Douglas County and spent a career as a military prosecutor. He and his wife have four children and live in Highlands Ranch. More information about Brauchler is available at www.georgeforda.com.
Feldman lives in Arapahoe County and was a defense attorney, in addition to his years on the bench. He is running for district attorney because he felt it was time for a positive change in the district attorney’s office, he said. More information about Feldman is available at www.feldmanforda.com.