Maricopa County Attorney's Race 2022

 

A COUNTY ATTORNEY is an elected official who serves as your county’s top prosecutor. County attorneys are the most powerful actors in the criminal justice system.

They decide who goes to prison and for how long. For years, county attorneys in Maricopa County have fueled growth in the prison population and supported policies that have devastated families and communities.

A REFORM-MINDED COUNTY ATTORNEY can turn the tide by making a commitment to work in the interest of people, not prisons.

The ACLU of Arizona does not endorse or oppose candidates running for office.

 

CANDIDATE POSITIONS ON CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM

The ACLU of Arizona campaign for Smart Justice asked each candidate to complete a questionnaire explaining their position on criminal justice reform issues. Below are excerpts from each candidate’s response, unless otherwise noted.

Question

Do you pledge to address the racial disparities in Maricopa County’s criminal justice system?

YES

"It’s time to end the two tiered system of justice where Arizonans of color routinely face longer and harsher sentencing than their white counterparts. The MCAO needs to ensure that every person is treated equally in our criminal legal system."

JULIE GUNNIGLE

UNKNOWN

Rachel Mitchell did not respond to the Smart Justice Arizona candidate questionnaire. 

RACHEL MITCHELL

Question

Will you hold police officers accountable for misconduct by creating an independent unit focused on addressing this issue?

YES

"I have been unflinchingly clear in my stance on holding law enforcement and others accountable. I will create an independent prosecutorial unit that will investigate all police use of force and misconduct cases, as well as maintain an up-to-date Brady and no-call list violations"

JULIE GUNNIGLE

UNKNOWN

Rachel Mitchell did not respond to the Smart Justice Arizona candidate questionnaire. 

RACHEL MITCHELL

Question

Will you ensure that all prosecutors in your office comply with their constitutional and ethical duties, and hold them accountable if they don't?

YES

"As County Attorney, I will come in with a new set of standards and ethical guidelines to ensure the office is pursuing justice in each and every case. Prosecutors that do not adhere to the new guidelines will be placed under review… and if there’s no improvement they will be let go."

JULIE GUNNIGLE

UNKNOWN

Rachel Mitchell did not respond to the Smart Justice Arizona candidate questionnaire. 

RACHEL MITCHELL

Question

Will you implement an office-wide policy to treat simple drug possession cases as misdemeanors rather than felonies?

YES

"We need to treat addiction as the public health crisis it is rather than using incarceration as a one size fits all solution. I plan on using diversion, deflection programs, and other resources to help individuals suffering from addiction rather than incarcerating them and causing lasting damage to their lives."

JULIE GUNNIGLE

UNKNOWN

Rachel Mitchell did not respond to the Smart Justice Arizona candidate questionnaire. 

RACHEL MITCHELL

Question

Will you exercise your prosecutorial discretion not to prosecute pregnant people or providers in abortion-related cases?

YES

JULIE GUNNIGLE

UNKNOWN

1

“This office will apply our ethical charging standard of a reasonable likelihood of conviction when deciding on whether the charges should be filed.”

Sources: 

  1. Rachel Mitchell did not respond to the Smart Justice candidate questionnaire but has made multiple public statements related to prosecuting abortion cases.

  2. How will the Maricopa County Attorney prosecute abortions?” Fox 10 Phoenix, June 28, 2022

2

RACHEL MITCHELL

"I am committed to upholding each and every Arizonans’ reproductive rights. I will use prosecutorial discretion to ensure individuals procuring an abortion or doctors administering an abortion are not prosecuted."

Question

Will you commit to adopting policies that safely reduce Arizona’s imprisonment rate?

YES

"I will work to increase diversion, treat kids like kids, treat mental illness and addiction as a public health crisis, and stop the overcharging that has become commonplace in the MCAO. My goal is to bring our incarceration rate down to the national average, in line with states like Utah to save taxpayers money."

JULIE GUNNIGLE

UNKNOWN

Rachel Mitchell did not respond to the Smart Justice Arizona candidate questionnaire. 

RACHEL MITCHELL

DOWNLOAD EACH CANDIDATE'S FULL QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSE

Rachel Mitchell did not respond to the Smart Justice Arizona candidate questionnaire.
 

  • Drinks, Jams, Justice: Glendale
    Tue, Aug 23
    Manuel's Mexican Restaurant & Cantina
    Aug 23, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM MST
    Manuel's Mexican Restaurant & Cantina, 5670 W Peoria Ave, Glendale, AZ 85302
    Join us for drinks, music, and free food while learning about the importance of the Maricopa County Attorney race this year!
    Share
  • Drinks, Jams, Justice: Sun City
    Tue, Sep 27
    Sun City Grand
    Sep 27, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM MST
    Sun City Grand, 19753 N Remington Dr, Surprise, AZ 85374, Sonora Room
    Join us for drinks, music, and free food while learning about the importance of the Maricopa County Attorney race this year!
    Share

UPCOMING EVENTS

WHEN CAN I VOTE?

Primary Election - August 2, 2022

General Election - November 8, 2022

 

REGISTER TO VOTE

Register to vote for the first time or update your address, political party preference, permanent early voting status or any information on your voter registration record.

CHECK YOUR
VOTER STATUS

Check the status of your voter registration.

FIND YOUR
POLLING LOCATION

Find your assigned polling location to cast your vote, request a provisional ballot or drop off your mail-in ballot. 

PAID FOR BY ACLU OF ARIZONA, INC.
NOT AUTHORIZED BY ANY CANDIDATE OR CANDIDATE'S COMMITTEE.