Following Re-Election, Plymouth County DA Tim Cruz Looks Ahead
In an election cycle that was decidedly terrible for Republicans up and down the ballot in Massachusetts, longtime Plymouth County District Attorney Tim Cruz weathered the storm and was once again soundly re-elected to another term in office.
Cruz has served as Plymouth County DA since 2001 and upon his new term will be the only Republican DA in the Commonwealth.
Cruz, in a recent appearance on WBSM's SouthCoast Tonight, reflected on why he believes he is one of the few Republican electoral survivors this cycle.
"I think we just really worked hard, like we always do," Cruz said. "We work hard at the job. We work hard at the politics of it, getting the word out as to what we're doing here, and talk about all of positive changes that we've made here in our county to make our county better and stronger. Making sure that people understand that our job is to preserve, promote, and protect the public safety of Plymouth County."
Cruz easily staved off a challenge from a formidable opponent, civil rights attorney and former prosecutor Rahsaan Hall, who presented a starkly different vision for prosecutorial justice than that of Cruz.
Cruz said he had not received a concession call – or any correspondence – from his Democratic challenger since election night.
With another four-year term in office, Cruz said he is looking forward to continuing the work that his office does not just in the courtroom, but out in the community as well.
Throughout his campaign, Cruz has touted a robust catalogue of community outreach programs targeted at crime prevention, such as counseling at-risk youth, and a task force identifying the supply of harmful substances such as opioids.
The long-tenured Cruz also continues to be held in high regard among his counterparts in the Commonwealth and across the country. The Massachusetts District Attorney's Association, in its November monthly meeting, tapped Cruz to serve as its president for the fourth time. He is succeeding Bristol County DA Tom Quinn for the position. Cruz also serves on the Committee and Board of Directors of the National District Attorneys Association.
Cruz said he and the 10 other DAs in the Commonwealth will put together five or six legislative priorities to lobby for on Beacon Hill this coming session. These priorities will likely include Governor Charlie Baker's "dangerousness" bill that would expand the list of crimes in which a prosecutor can request a hearing for a defendant to be held without bail.
Cruz cited as one of the benchmarks for his and the other DAs' success the increasingly low rate of incarceration and crime in Plymouth County and across the Commonwealth. According to Cruz, just around 80 people are serving a sentence at the Plymouth County House of Correction, and Massachusetts has the lowest rate of incarceration per population.
"I think that what that shows you is that we've been smarter on crime," Cruz said. "We've been smarter in trying to help people. We're smarter on helping guys coming back into the community. But also, in the middle, we need to continue to hold people accountable. The people who are out there that are hurting other people."
"When you put that whole package together, and you can make it fit into your county, into your community, and into the Commonwealth, great things can happen," Cruz said. "I think that's what happened in Plymouth County, and a lot of our adjoining counties, the numbers are very similar."
Listen to District Attorney Tim Cruz's interview with Chris McCarthy and Marcus Ferro on WBSM's SouthCoast Tonight.