Leon King, the city's former Prisons Commissioner who also spent some time on the staff of City Councilman Frank Rizzo, sent an e-mail Saturday to a wide group of people announcing that he is off the May 19 primary election ballot for a seat on the Court of Common Pleas. King's e-mail said the state Commonwealth Court had approved his petition to remove his name from the ballot. He added that he was "steadfast" in his drive to become a judge but withdrew for the "greater good of the Democratic Party."
PhillyClout can think of only one way a candidate that really wants to be a judge can drop out of the race while helping his political party. That would be a nomination from the governor for an opening on the court. We caught up by phone with King today while he was in Staples buying ink for his computer printer. 'I worked for the city for 17 years," King joked. "I never had to buy a pen."
King was coy when we asked if he got out of the race due to an impending appointment, saying he had not spoken to the governor or any of his staffers about a seat on the court. "I expect in the future that I will be on the court," King said. "I'm certainly qualified for the court. That's where I intend to be."
After the jump, you can read the text of King's e-mail, which was sent to judges and court personnel, City Council members and staffers, mayoral appointees and corporate big-wigs.
This is to advise everyone that effective April 7, 2009, Commonwealth Court granted my voluntary request to be removed form the Ballot for the upcoming May 19th Municipal Primary. I am no longer a candidate in the May 19, 2009 Municipal Primary, but I remain steadfast in my goal to become and judge of the Court of Common Pleas.
Sometimes one must sacrifice one’s own goals, to the betterment of the whole. In the case, I have withdrawn my candidacy for the greater good of the Democratic Party. I am certain that this action will result in many good things to come, and with everyone’s future help I will fulfill my goal of becoming a Judge of the Court of Common Pleas. You can also be assured that I will continue to speak out on issues concerning criminal justice, especially as they related to our “Incarceration Nation” and what it takes to have “real” criminal justice planning in this City.
Many thanks to all those who lent their support to allow us to get this far, especially those who helped with Petitions, and most importantly those who were able to contribute monetarily to the campaign. Also special thanks to Fred Hess who was an essential ingredient to our success, along with Alexi Vandenberg or senior advisor. Most important, special thanks to Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell for all her advice and support, as well as to Councilman Frank Rizzo for his loyalty and support.
In the coming weeks there will be some sort of thank you celebration and I will keep you all advised on the date and time of this event.
Have a great Passover, Easter, or just a great weekend.
P.S. I am now available to increase my representation of clients, whether as an attorney, or as a consultant, in my areas of expertise. Give me a call if you have some problems that need solving.
Leon A. King II
Attorney at Law