Karen McDonald is a new candidate running for Oakland Country Prosecutor in 2020 against the 12-year incumbent prosecutor, Jessica Cooper. She has experience working in the prosecutor’s office and as a judge in Oakland County Circuit Court. Karen is dedicated to reforming our criminal justice system and keeping Oakland County safe.
On this episode of Open Mike, Karen explains how her stances on important issues differ from her opponents’. She answers questions about wrongful convictions, unfair bail practices, and marijuana expungements. Tune in to hear more about Karen’s plans to revolutionize the Oakland County Prosecutor’s office.
[0:05] Introducing today’s guest, Karen McDonald
[0:51] Karen talks about stepping down from her position in the Oakland County Circuit Court
[3:17] Karen plans on being fully involved with treatment courts
[5:29] Over 90% of the people who don’t post bail plead guilty
[5:54] Check out the Detroit Bail Project
[7:04] People are denied due process because they are poor
[8:36] Can you explain the original basis for bail?
[12:00] Karen wants her prosecutors to attend arraignments and usually resist cash bail
[13:05] 93% of the Bail Project’s clients show up to their trial
[14:25] People should stay in jail if they are dangerous
[16:29] Having a democrat challenge a democrat who is 12 years incumbent is strange
[16:46] Kym Worthy endorsed Karen
[17:02] Making wrongful convictions right is important to Mike
[18:32] Watching what Jessica Cooper said about wrongful convictions
[20:51] Asking Karen the same question
[25:25] Prosecutors should have enough integrity to admit mistakes
[26:43] Wrongful conviction is not a partisan issue
[28:05] Mike is switching his vote to Karen
[28:29] What did you think of the prosecutor in Kenny Wyniemko’s case?
[29:57] The Prosecutor has to focus on justice and not winning
[34:08] Wrongful convictions mean the real criminal goes free
[36:08] How to balance protecting victims and not jumping to conclusions?
[37:52] Kenny stood up for Carl Marlinga because he didn’t know what the prosecutor was doing
[41:46] Can you talk about marijuana expungements?
[43:57] When you become Oakland County prosecutor you won’t contest marijuana expungements?
[44:58] Do you want to point out any other differences between you and Jessica Cooper?
[47:26] Thank you for watching this episode of Open Mike!