District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis notched a victory Tuesday when the union representing over 300 deputy district attorneys endorsed her re-election campaign.
But the announcement came after two drama-filled weeks of behind-the-scenes politicking, and allegations that some attorneys were being strong-armed into supporting their boss.
In particular, emails sent from deputy district attorneys to co-workers encouraging them to support Dumanis leading up to and during the union’s days-long endorsement vote have generated complaints.
Jessica Levinson, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles and vice president of the L.A. Ethics Commission, said the inclusion of the recipient names on the emails that spurred complaints “probably doesn’t rise to the level of being legally actionable, but it lives in the subtle gray area where we know what it’s about.”
“Does this rise to ‘you need to endorse or else you won’t get plum assignments or a promotion?’ No, but everyone knows how to use BCC, right? I think this can be seen as a subtle tactic to feel pressure to endorse in a re-election,” Levinson said.