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Prosecutor Alan Jackson leads in early fundraising for D.A. race

Veteran county prosecutor Alan Jackson has taken a surprising early lead in fundraising over his boss and election rival, Chief Deputy Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey, in the race to become the next Los Angeles County district attorney, according to the latest campaign finance statements.

Jackson raised $383,000 in cash between May 20 and June 30 compared to just $70,875 for Lacey, who many political experts consider the favorite in the November run-off to become the county's top prosecutor. Lacey had $41,000 on hand by the end of the reporting period but listed more than $22,000 in debts. Jackson had $307,000 left in cash and listed debts of nearly $40,000.

Lacey, who holds the number 2 post in the district attorney's office, outpolled Jackson and four other rivals in the June 5 primary, winning 32% of the vote. Jackson, who is perhaps best known for his role successfully prosecuting legendary music producer Phil Spector for murder, came second with 24% of the vote.

Jackson's campaign strategist, John S. Thomas, hailed the latest political contribution figures as evidence that his client is gaining momentum over Lacey. "This is an early indicator that the citizens who are incredibly interested in this race want a top-notch prosecutor, not a bureaucrat," he said.

Terrie Coady, a campaign aide for Lacey, said it was too early to draw conclusions from the fundraising figures. "We intend to make enough money to run a successful campaign," she said. "It's still early ... so a lot of things can change."

Without independent polling on such a race, campaign finance statements are often among the few objective barometers for how a candidate's campaign is faring. But their reliability as such a yardstick is far from flawless. In the primary election, City Atty. Carmen Trutanich dwarfed his rivals in fundraising but finished third, failing to earn a place in the run-off.

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-- Jack Leonard

 
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