To the Editor: Democrats should have endorsed Sorrell

Dear Editor,

We are appalled that the Democratic State Committee failed to endorse the Democratic candidate Bill Sorrell. Sorrell has served Vermont admirably for 15 years as our Attorney General and is a bona-fide Democrat.

The party’s grounds for not endorsing Sorrell were that he did not call them on the phone to request that endorsement and that he had campaign materials printed by a non-union company. These are ridiculous reasons to choose to not certify his party affiliation. No other candidate has endured this scrutiny.

The party should endorse him because he is a Democrat and a noble public servant, not because he knows how to grease the wheels. Moreover, the printing company Sorrell used for his campaign mailers is a small family business; his late brother-in-law began the company. Bill chose to support his family’s local business. The hubbub over where the mailers were printed is diverting attention form the real reason the State Committee did not endorse Sorrell: party politics.

Sorrell’s opponent is a magnificent politician who has successfully seduced the Democratic Party into believing that the Attorney General has the power to do many things not mandated by the job’s definition. For example, the Attorney General cannot control the prosecutorial decisions on marijuana law enforcement of each county’s State’s Attorney, nor can he change the federal law that eliminates safety issues from consideration when a nuclear power plant is endangering people’s lives.

The Attorney General is bound by law and not by party politics. To maintain the appearance of judicial objectivity, the Attorney General has to distance himself from the back-slapping that other candidates have the freedom to engage in. For 15 years, Bill’s job has dictated that he support and represent all Vermonters, not just Democrats.

With regard to the vilification of Sorrell’s investigation into the Hartford police incident, few people seem to understand that criminal prosecution of police officers requires much more proof than civil litigation. Sorrell has prosecuted more police officers than any other Attorney General or State’s Attorney in the history of Vermont.

It is clear to us that the Democratic Party is seeking to elect a slick-talking politician who will stick up for Party interests, as opposed to an Attorney General who will defend justice and the rights of all Vermonters.

Party politics cannot sway us. As Vermont residents and Democrats for the last 40 years, we are proudly voting for Democrat Bill Sorrell on Aug. 28th.

Anne and Neil Marinello

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