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Reader asserts facts misstated

Letter to the Editor

 


After hearing and reading a lot of misinformation about the race between Judge David Estudillo and his challenger, Nick Wallace, I feel compelled to set the record straight regarding two issues: campaign financing and judicial experience.

According to Wallace, Judge Estudillo’s campaign funds come largely from western Washington. This is absolutely false. According to Public Disclosure Commission records, 41 percent of Judge Estudillo’s campaign funds come from donors residing in eastern Washington. Another 35 percent comes from Judge Estudillo and his immediate family. Another 9 percent comes from organizations with eastern Washington members. Another 6 percent comes from his fellow judges. That leaves only 8 percent that comes from donors residing in western Washington. This is hardly the “majority” as breathlessly claimed by Wallace.

Mr. Wallace’s campaign slogan is “Experience Matters.” I wholeheartedly agree. That is why I am supporting Judge Estudillo. Mr. Wallace’s “judicial experience” is not as a judge, but as a court commissioner. A court commissioner has very limited authority and discretion. They cannot preside over jury trials, and their rulings are subject to revision by Superior Court judges like Judge Estudillo.

Mr. Wallace’s experience as a court commissioner is not extensive. According to Grant County records, over the last 10 years Mr. Wallace has worked an average of one partial day per month. This is certainly not the “part-time judge” status he deceptively claims.

In sharp contrast, Judge Estudillo has more than a year of experience as a full-time Superior Court judge. In that time, Judge Estudillo has presided over numerous criminal trials. By his own admission, Mr. Wallace has tried just one jury trial as an attorney and never presided over one as a “part-time judge.” This is not the experience that matters.

Robert E. Schiffner

Attorney at Law

Moses Lake

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