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The Times 

Letter to the editor

Brandon Johnson for Superior Court judge.


October 15, 2020

I think Brandon Johnson has the experience, smarts, and personality to be a very good Superior Court judge. I urge you to vote for him.

I am a Superior Court judge. I was first elected in 2008. Before that I was in a private law firm. Brandon Johnson was a lawyer in that firm. I know from personal experience that Brandon was, and is, a good lawyer. He studied and understood the law. He worked hard, was fair, and treated people equally. All important qualities for a judge.

I have been told some people question Brandon’s experience in criminal law and if, as a consequence, he could be a good judge. Yes, Brandon has experience in criminal law and even if he did not, he would still, in my opinion, be a very good judge.

As for his experience, Brandon has a degree from WSU in criminal justice, which includes the study of criminal law and procedure. Brandon also clerked for two years at the Court of Appeals after he graduated from Gonzaga Law School. While there he researched and studied Washington criminal law and helped write opinions for the court dealing with criminal law. Brandon has criminal law experience.

But you can, I think, be a good Superior Court judge without any criminal law experience. How do I know? I think I have been a good judge. Talk to lawyers who have argued or tried criminal cases in my court and, I think, they will tell you I had no trouble understanding and deciding criminal law cases. But here is the thing. When I was first elected judge I had zero criminal law experience. Not convinced? Then consider retired Superior Court judge Bob Zagelow. For 12 years he served very well as a Superior Court judge. When he was first elected as judge he had the same amount of criminal law experience as did I: none!

Brandon’s experience as a law clerk at the Court of Appeals provides him with excellent training to be a Superior Court judge. The Court of Appeals reviews decisions from Superior Court. He is well versed in the role of Superior Court judge and how to be effective in that role.

Brandon Johnson has the experience, the smarts, the personality, and the dedication to be a very fine Superior Court judge. I urge you to vote for him.

Judge Bruce Spanner

Benton/Franklin Superior Court


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