An Editorial Opinion

Tue, 07/01/2008 - 4:25pm
By: The Citizen

The four sheriff candidates, five board of education candidates and the district attorney of this judicial circuit all have refused even to answer The Citizen’s tough questions for our online political forum.

DA Ballard says, “I don’t blog.”

The sheriff candidates — whom we once thought were strong men ready for a demanding job answerable to the public — banded together to say, “We believe that participating in a forum of this type will ... be unproductive ... and would consume an enormous amount of time which we feel would be better spent on more constructive business.”

The five board of education candidates — including two incumbents — were offended by our tough, pointed questions. “We are running a positive campaign and believe these questions are negative in nature. The challengers will not disrespect the current members of the board.” Write softer questions and we might condescend to answer, they in effect said.

Well, somebody has gotten disrespected in this mess of mass political cowardice — the 43,000 readers of this newspaper (a minimum estimate, since that’s how many homes we deliver to each week) and the nearly 53,000 people who visit our website.

By rejecting the tough questions, these candidates have demonstrated an arrogant disregard for the thousands of voters and taxpayers in this community who will never go to a sparsely attended, antiseptic “meet and greet,” so-called forum with its carefully screened, milquetoast “questions” and who depend on this news source to acquaint them with the character of the candidates and the issues they must face.

Ballard, Babb, Hannah, Mindar, Simmons, Smith, Smola, Jensen-Linton, Houston and Aasen have ducked maybe the only hard questions they will be getting this political season.

They are all running as Republicans.

What a sorry scenario.

Whatever else they may have done or accomplished previously, they now seem ... small.

We draw voters’ and taxpayers’ attention to the candidates who did not duck the tough questions. Their responses and the “negative” questions are reprinted in this issue as well as online.

We invite you to consider their political courage and their sense of responsibility to the voters and taxpayers.

Read the questions. See if the questions asked some important things you want and deserve to know.

See who answered. And then vote.

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mapleleaf's picture
Submitted by mapleleaf on Sat, 07/05/2008 - 10:55am.

Don’t feel bad about the four sheriff candidates’ not answering your questions. They didn’t answer the questions of the League of Women Voters of Georgia either, and those questions were neither tough nor negative.

By going to, one can dig up interesting information about our candidates. First of all, it is possible to learn about all the candidates you can vote for by entering your address. You’ll discover Public Service Commission candidates you’ve never heard from or about before, who will be on your ballot.

When candidates answered, you can generally find their age. People like George Wingo or Terri Smith wouldn’t disclose that. It is public information available elsewhere, but they want you to work to get it. Linda Wells did say she was an honest 60, and Dr. Bacallao is 39. Herb Frady won’t tell either, but Bob Fuhrman is 62.

The probate judge candidates did not answer questions either. I don’t know why.

Our district attorney Scott Ballard may have white hair, but he is only 49. His opponent Rudjard Hayes is 43.

Not answering The Citizen’s questions is one thing, but one can detect a pattern when candidates won’t answer the League of Women Voters either. You can learn a lot from what people say, but sometimes you learn a lot from what people don’t say.

Submitted by tc on Sat, 07/05/2008 - 11:29am.

We elect people to represent us. If they won't answer questions before they get elected, why would we think that they will be open and willing to communicate after they get elected? By design, government is supposed to be transparent and representative of the people.

Submitted by oldbeachbear on Sat, 07/05/2008 - 11:18am.

that you wouldn't want someone to smear your family or yourself in public, but what are we to think with no answers? For instance, I am going to vote for Hayes at the present. Why? For a long time I've heard that Scott Ballard was defending a child molester. I don't know if this is true, but it would seem that the lack of coming forward and saying 'no I didn't' would be comforting. When the guy doesn't answer, you can only think there is some truth in that. And we have only to look at our supreme courts to realize how funky some of these guys can go in some directions that seems sheer idoicty to us. Soooo, my thing is, if you won't answer, what are we to think you believe in?
I've seem some decisions come down from the supreme court that I thought they were smoking crack! I don't want to see anyone else in office that is off the reservation. The only chance you have is to explain your point of view and see if we have the same ones. If you don't can we trust you?

Submitted by sageadvice on Sat, 07/05/2008 - 2:12pm.

Ever notice lawyers won't let their clients testify in court when on trial? They are not all guilty!

Anyway would you believe a criminal if he testified that he was innocent, anyway?

By the way, I didn't kill that deer alongside the road on Robinson and I want you to know that I didn't deliberately kill it, it ran into me, but I didn't kill it, technically. I didn't rob that satchel alongside the deer neither. The money was fake, so I left it there--I have never seen any money by the deer, really. I'll tell the judge and jury all that and I'll surely be free.

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