When defense attorney Chris Bugbee (right) addressed a room full of Republicans in June, he told them that he not only intends to defeat incumbent Spokane County Prosecutor Steve Tucker (left), Bugbee said he intends to retire from the office.
The bold prediction not only illustrates Bugbee’s quick emergence as a front-runner but how contentious the primary contest has become.
The five-way race also features Republican David Stevens (right), Democrat Frank Malone (bottom right), unaffiliated candidate Jim Reierson (bottom left) and Tucker, a Republican, who has repeatedly said that his opponents don’t understand what it takes to manage 140 employees and points to his experience as the reason he is the best choice.
All of the candidates are experienced lawyers.
“I am the only one with law enforcement experience. I have more management experience than all the others and more time in the prosecutor’s office,” Tucker said. “It gives me a better base to make decisions.”
But Bugbee, who up until 2002 worked under Tucker, deadpanned: “What good is experience if you are not actually doing the job?”
Bugbee, 43, has raised twice as much money as his closest rival – Tucker – and has racked up the most influential law enforcement endorsements, landing the Spokane Police Guild, the Spokane County Deputy Sheriff’s Association and the Fraternal Order of Police, which is made up of retired law enforcement.
Read the rest of Thomas Clouses's story here.
Read more about the candidates here.