Death Row Records founder Michael “Harry-O” Harris on Wednesday announced his endorsement of Republican candidate Nathan Hochman for California attorney general.
“I’ve come full circle from the LA streets, to prison, now I’m back to mentor and inspire my community,” Harris said in a television ad released Wednesday.
Harris, who is a founding member of the non-profit The Last Mile, was serving 30 years of a 25-years-to-life sentence for conspiracy to commit first-degree murder when he learned he was going to be released early from a California prison.
In January 2021, former President Trump pardoned Harris. His was one of 73 pardons and 70 sentence commutations issued by the former president during his final days in office.
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“The choices we make impact our lives and the people around us,” Harris said in the ad. “That’s why we need leaders who will protect our communities and help them thrive. Nathan Hochman is that leader.”
Hochman tweeted that he was proud to announce Harris’ endorsement.
While in prison, Harris helped get Death Row Records up and running. The label became a major force in 1990s hip-hop that churned out gangsta rap hits from artists like Dr. Dre, Snoop and Tupac.
Hochman, who has 30 years of criminal justice experience as a federal prosecutor, is running to replace Democratic incumbent Attorney General Ron Bonta who was appointed by Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom last year to replace Xavier Becerra who stepped down to become President Biden’s Secretary of Health and Human Services.
Hochman has repeatedly attacked his opponent over his soft-on-crime policies, saying he has failed to intervene in counties where crime has risen.
In a previous interview with Fox News, Hochman vowed to “set a completely different tone” if elected and said he would be “independent” in a state government run by Democrats.
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“There is no independent voice in Sacramento advocating for the citizens, and in particular the victims of crimes,” he said, before adding that, unlike Democrats, he would look to partner with police on addressing crime and “increase police budgets,” rather than defunding them.
“I will make sure criminals understand that all crimes have consequences,” he declared.
Fox News’ Louis Casiano and Brandon Gillespie contributed to this report.