The Trial Lawyers Speak
Jerry Kilgore's death penalty ad is aimed at Tim Kaine, whose personal opposition to capital punishment is at odds with the majority of Virginians.
But the ads seem to have rankled another group: trial lawyers.
About 125 of them signed a letter to Kilgore sent today, blasting him for suggesting that lawyers shouldn't represent death row clients. It refers to an ad in which Stanley Rosenbluth, the father of a murder victim, speaks against Kaine.
"Your Rosenbluth ad suggests that attorneys who handle death penalty cases are an enemy of the victim's family," the letter states. "To quote the ad, the defense attorney in the Rosenbluth case 'stood with the murderer,' and 'volunteered' to do so."
The letter goes on to say that having good lawyers for death row clients is "essential to the administration of justice" and they call on Kilgore to take the ads down.
"We call upon you sir, as a former Attorney General of the Commonwealth, and as a colleague committed to the rule of law, to withdraw that ad."
Kilgore's response: not on your life.
"It comes as no surprise that someone who has given Tim Kaine more than $10,000 in his last two elections doesn't like an ad that highlights Tim Kaine's record," said Kilgore spokesman Tim Murtaugh.
Bob Hall, the main signatory to the letter, gave $10,711 to Kaine over the years, according to the Virginia Public Access Project. Hall calls him "a friend." Hall has also made two $1,000 contributions to Republicans, but a total of $38,761 to Democrats.
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