Mark Graham
A month before the election, Craig Watkins took off his law firm's Web site a page proclaiming his desire to defend his clients "by any means necessary."

Watkins: "I Enjoy Manipulating the Government." Oh, Really?

Man, I really wish I hadn't thrown away all that campaign junk mail that filled my mailbox in the past few weeks. Apparently, buried among the winsome photos of candidates with their shiny, happy kids and medicated wives was some information that might have been useful--like, oh, the fact the man Dallas County just elected as its district attorney was advertising the fact he wasn't too fond of the District Attorney's Office just a few weeks before the election.

That's to be expected, to some degree; after all, Craig Watkins paid the bills as a criminal defense attorney. The man was all about stickin' it to The Man. But to what extent we had no idea till Unfair Park was forwarded a page from Watkins' law firm's Web site, which he took down on October 6--the day The Dallas Morning News referenced the page without actually quoting from it for whatever reason.

Seems until a few days ago, Watkins was advertising his ability to manipulate the system and throw up every roadblock imaginable. "My job as a Criminal Defense Attorney is not only to ensure that justice is served," he wrote, "but also to vigorously defend you by any means necessary. I am not concerned with whether or not you are guilty or innocent. My concern is to hold the Government accountable for the offense for which they have charged you with. Prosecutors are claiming that you committed a crime; it is my responsibility to put up every roadblock and to search every loophole and legal technicality to get you off."

Toby Shook used a few of these quotes in some campaign literature; guess it went to registered Republicans, because damned if we ever saw it. But those who did--including local attorneys who received an e-mail from Shook's campaign containing Watkins' mission statement days before the election--were infuriated by its contents, says one lawyer who got it. You can read the entirety of the page removed from Watkins' Web site right here. --Robert Wilonsky

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