Nathan Deal appoints his lawyer's son to state ethics commission

Gov. Nathan Deal on Friday named Jake Evans, an Atlanta attorney to the state ethics commission.

Evans replaces Tricia Pridemore, a former member of his administration, whom Deal appointed to the board in July. Pridemore, however, apparently ran afoul of a commission rule barring anyone who has been a candidate for office in the past five years from serving. Pridemore ran for Congress in


Pridemore, who was once Deal's choice to chair the state Republican Party, herself was a replacement pick after Deal appointed former commission director Rick Thompson to the position in May, but had to refuse the position after questions were raised about his eligibility.

Thompson had registered as a lobbyist for a company that provides disclosure services to candidates, elected officials and others regulated by the commission. State law says no one may be appointed to a commission that regulates a company the individual represented for one year after the person ends his lobbyist registration.

Evans, an attorney with Thompson Hine, earned his bachelor's and law degrees form the University of Georgia. He is the son of Randy Evans, Deal's long-time private attorney. It is likely Jake Evans would have to recuse himself from any case dealing with the governor or in which his father is involved.

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