As is becoming increasingly common among prosecuting attorney races across the United States, a George Soros-backed political group has invested in a progressive candidate with a record of soft-on-crime campaign statements.
The billionaire investor has reportedly already funded $100,000 into a candidate for the political opening based in Little Rock, Arkansas. Financial records reveal that the Arkansas Justice and Public Safety PAC was formed in late April, with Soros as the exclusive funder.
In total, Soros has given $321,000 to the organization, with a little more than $106,000 going to the support of progressive candidate Alicia Walton, a former public defender. The Sixth Judicial District, for which the vacated position of prosecuting attorney Walton is running, covers Perry and Pulaski Counties, and that includes the somewhat competitive area that includes the Arkansas state capital of Little Rock.
The Arkansas Justice and Public Safety PAC, so far, has utilized the candidate donations on research, polling, and consulting in support of Walton, including a $40,000 ad buy on seven Little Rock television stations, according to the Arkansas Times.
Walton desperately needed the funding boost, as she raised less than $20,000 on her own thus far. Her competitor, Will Jones, has far exceeded her, with around $144,000 in his campaign coffers right now. Recently, she told Black Consumer News that her goal was to bring her experience in the criminal justice system, both as a prosecutor and a crime victim, to the position she is seeking.
“With that experience in mind, I will work to empower the victims, dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline, and provide a pathway for those with mental health and substance abuse challenges. It is time for the criminal justice system to work for all of us,” Walton said.
“Alicia believes that the current criminal legal system is fundamentally flawed and needs reform-minded individuals in order to achieve equity,” her website states. “It’s time for Alicia Walton, the Progressive Candidate.”
Her website also boasts that she is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps and was “instrumental in creating the Pulaski County Veterans Treatment Court.”
The Arkansas GOP responded on social media with an announcement to the contrary, capitalizing on Soros’s reputation of funding prosecuting attorneys in areas with increasing crime rates and soft on crime policies.
“Crime increases around the nation where Soros funded DAs and Prosecutors reign,” the group said in a statement. “Now, as crime is on the rise in Little Rock, Soros turns his attention and cash to the Central Arkansas Prosecuting Attorney’s Race, supporting soft on crime Alicia Walton.”
Crime increases around the Nation where George Soros funded DAs & Prosecutors reign. Now as crime is on the rise in Little Rock, Soros turns his attention and cash to the Central AR Prosecuting Attorney’s Race, supporting soft on crime Alicia Walton.
— Arkansas GOP (@ARGOP) April 29, 2022
Regardless, Arkansas voters will decide who wins the judicial race on May 24, when they head to the polls to vote.
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