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Writer is offended by Republican election mailer

Posted 1 November 2013 at 12:00 am

Editor:

Like everyone else in Orleans County I received a campaign mailer this past week from the Republican incumbents on the County Legislature. What stunned me about the piece was the use of the word “divisive” to describe the diverse slate of candidates who are campaigning to unseat them.

How are opposing candidates supposed to run for office? Must they promise to match the incumbents’ views in order to be considered authentically “non-divisive”? Do the incumbents believe that there is something inherently wrong about opposition candidates actually having different views? That a candidate is offering a different point of view is not divisive.It is how democracy works.

Not surprisingly, the purpose of the mailer is to undermine the effort of Concerned Citizens of Orleans County to stop the Legislature from selling The Villages of Orleans to a for-profit business.The effort of Concerned Citizens has inspired a diverse slate of Democrats, Conservatives, Independents and even (gasp!) Republicans to run for the County Legislature in November with a pledge to stop the proposed sale of The Villages.

In order to save our county nursing home, residents of each town have two at-large challengers and one district challenger to choose from on Nov. 5.

So, yes, I am offended by the use of the word “divisive” in this campaign literature from the Republican incumbents.I think the mailer demonstrates the fear of the incumbents that the county-wide effort of Concerned Citizens has been getting excellent traction with voters.In this respect I agree with the motivation behind their campaign flyer: they are right to be worried.

James Renfrew
Clarendon