LETTER: Candidates should answer to citizens, not political party

Jul. 02, 2013 @ 05:00 AM

To the Editor:

On Friday, June 28, The Sanford Herald reported that this week, partisan elections became law for Sanford City Council and the Lee County School Board. Lee County Commissioner Jim Womack, who seems to be the voice for the commissioners, has said he was one of those who contacted Rep. Mike Stone about sponsoring the partisan elections bill. So far, it seems no one else has come forward to admit they also contacted Stone which seems to indicate that Womack and the Republican Party were the driving force behind this bill.

Womack is quoted as stating, “I believe the bill is truly about transparency and full disclosure. What is good for the goose is good for the gander. The board of commissioners is elected through a partisan election, and it works well to define the candidates by their party, their voting predispositions and their value systems.”

Personally, I do not cast my vote based on the candidate’s party affiliation. I am one who gathers as much information about the candidates as is possible and then decides who will get my vote or votes based on this information. I feel that any candidate for whom I vote is responsible to the citizens they represent rather than any party, but it appears Womack and many others think otherwise. I feel that to blindly vote by party affiliation is not that much different from throwing a vote away.

On Thursday, The Herald attempted to contact Mike Stone for a comment, but Stone, in his usual “transparent” manner, did not bother to return phone or email messages. I personally know how he operates, having written Stone emails requesting information and receiving nothing but silence in return. I have the feeling Stone hesitates to say (interview) or write (email) anything extemporaneously because of a fear of stating something of which the Republican Party might not approve. So much for representing the people, Mike.

Joe Wild

Sanford

(Editor’s note: Rep. Mike Stone did call The Herald about this matter, but his response came after our deadline.)