Jamal Washington leaving jail

Lake County Councilman Jamal Washington departs the Lake County Jail last month after bonding out on domestic violence charges.

In the heart of the #MeToo movement, it's hard to imagine it getting much worse for Region government than a sitting Lake County Council member being convicted of battering his wife.

But it could.

Lake County Councilman Jamal Washington made the ill-advised move of filing Wednesday to run for Lake County Board of Commissioners.

That means a convicted batterer, who currently faces new domestic violence charges for allegedly attacking a female cousin in December, is attempting to leave the county's top fiscal and legislative body to become one of the county's top elected executives.

The three county commissioners are comparable to the mayors of unincorporated county areas, and Washington announced he is running against incumbent 1st District Commissioner Kyle Allen in the Democratic primary.

We're not ready to endorse in any 2018 political race, but we can definitively say Washington should not run or be elected.

It's not even clear if Washington will be able to fulfill the rest of his Lake County Council term.

Because of his guilty plea to a battery charge last year, his probationary sentence and the new domestic charges he faces, Washington also awaits a hearing on violations of his probation.

If a judge finds him to be in violation of probation, he could spend up to a year in jail.

And some of his fellow council members have said they're poised to use a state statute to remove Washington from office — for an inability to perform his duties — if he ends up spending an extended time in jail.

By filing to run for any elected office — much less a higher one than he currently holds in local government — Washington isn't just thumbing his nose at the rising social wave against the mistreatment of women.

He's making an embarrassing mockery out of every elected official and resident of Lake County.

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Members of The Times Editorial Board are Publisher Christopher T. White, Local News Editor Marc Chase, Lake County Editor Crista Zivanovic, Porter/LaPorte County Editor Doug Ross and Deputy Local Editor Erin Orr.