Thursday, March 31, 2005
Cooley Says He Will Serve Out Term, Shuts Door On Possible Run for Attorney General Next Year
By KENNETH OFGANG, Staff Writer
District Attorney Steve Cooley said yesterday that he will not run for California attorney general and expects to serve out his second term.
Cooley said in a statement that while he was “deeply flattered” by the many calls he has received urging him to look at the contest, he has “made the decision to continue to serve the people of Los Angeles County as their chief prosecutor until 2008.”
Cooley has previously said he would not run for a third term as district attorney.
The announcement appears to leave a clear field for state Sen. Charles Poochigian, R-Fresno, who has about $1.2 million cash on hand for a campaign to succeed Democrat Bill Lockyer. Lockyer, who may run for governor, is barred by term limits from running for his present office.
“I made this decision several weeks ago and make it public today only because of continuing media inquires and political speculation that I might run.
“I am proud to have served alongside so many dedicated women and men in the District Attorney’s Office for nearly 32 years. Their daily commitment to this public calling inspires me, and I look forward to continuing this relationship as District Attorney for Los Angeles County.”
Poochigian told the MetNews he was “obviously... pleased to have one less prospective opponent.” He said he and Cooley have been friends for a long time, and that the district attorney of the state’s largest county would have been a “tough competitor” if he had jumped into the race.
Poochigian added that “I would hope to have his support and the benefit of any advice he might offer.”
Two other Republicans who had been mentioned as possible candidates, Riverside County Deputy District Attorney Rod Pacheco and Los Angeles attorney Gary Mendoza, will apparently run for other offices. Pacheco, a strong contender for district attorney in his home county, has endorsed Poochigian, the senator said, while Mendoza, who ran for insurance commissioner in 2002, has opened an account for a possible repeat bid.
Democrats who are raising money to run are Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown, a former governor; Sen. Joe Dunn, D-Garden Grove; and Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo.
Copyright 2005, Metropolitan News Company