Apparently Tony Golik administers a political campaign as well as he prosecutes criminal cases: powerfully and effectively. That’s what makes him the clear choice for Clark County prosecuting attorney in the Nov. 2 election. (Ballots will be mailed Oct. 13).
Golik — a major crimes prosecutor in the department he seeks to direct — raced briskly out of the campaign starting blocks earlier this year and began stacking up an impressive list of endorsements. Then he emerged as the leading vote-getter in the three-candidate Aug. 17 primary, grabbing almost 49 percent of votes as Brent Boger also advanced with 43.5 percent.
Boger emphasized his greater variety of overall legal experience. Golik, though, would point to his campaign slogan, “It takes a prosecutor to be the prosecutor,” and point out that Boger has never gone to criminal trial in the state of Washington, “nor has he prosecuted a criminal.” Touché!
As Boger boasted about his experience in civil cases, Golik announced an endorsement by the chief deputy prosecutor on the civil side of the prosecutor’s office, E. Bronson Potter. Couple that with an earlier endorsement by retiring county prosecuting attorney Art Curtis, and you’ve got roadrunner Golik continually outmaneuvering coyote Boger in the race for campaign momentum.
Political dominance is not nearly as valuable as the record of courtroom battles won against bad guys, and that’s why The Columbian endorses Golik. We’re not alone in that opinion, and compelling advice comes from law enforcement agencies that are responsible for apprehending those bad guys. Vancouver police officers, Clark County sheriff’s officers and police officers in five other Clark County cities have endorsed Golik’s bid to take the top job in the department. And within that department, Golik’s fellow deputy prosecutors also tab him as their favorite.
In the August primary, we designated both of these candidates as worthy of advancing to the general election. That opinion carried little risk, as the third candidate (George Kolin) ultimately won less than 8 percent of the votes. Today’s opinion comes just as easily, when the experience factor and meaningful endorsements from key factions are considered.
Golik has worked for a decade as a deputy prosecutor, with six years in the major crimes unit, prosecuting many high-profile cases. Boger has worked 25 years as an attorney; since 1999 as senior assistant city attorney for the city of Vancouver.
The campaign slogan says it all: It takes a prosecutor to be the prosecutor.
Sherry Parker, a longtime employee in the Clark County clerk’s office, has served commendably for four years as director of the department that is responsible for records of all Superior Court matters, including felony criminal cases and some civil lawsuits, plus divorce, juvenile and probate cases. She supervises four dozen people and manages a $5.9 million budget.
Challenger Scott Weber works as a manufacturing engineering technician, supervises no workers and wants to abolish the county clerk’s office.
He’s barking up the wrong tree. Weber’s desire to make the office appointed instead of elected should be pursued through efforts to change the county charter. Six of the state’s 39 counties have made such a change, but that crusade has been rejected by voters three times in Clark County. For Weber to campaign, essentially, for fewer elections likely won’t sit well with the voters he is asking to elect him as county clerk. That bizarre approach, plus Parker’s good performance record, makes her the obvious choice for Clark County clerk.