Letter: Bad election tactics
It is unfortunate indeed that the local Democratic party has sought to bring the national and Chicago-style politics of personal destruction to the local commissioner’s race. While we may have differences in philosophy (and that is what elections are for) in Garfield County, we do not engage in attempting to destroy individuals while trying to achieve political victory.
If you want to take on an office holder, demonstrate why you or your candidate have a better vision for that entity, be it a county government, municipal entity or state Legislature; don’t do it by threatening to destroy the individual legally and personally if they don’t immediately resign from the office and the race. That is the argument of a failed political strategy and a weak candidate.
I have known and worked with John Martin for over two decades in many capacities, including my past five years as chair of the Garfield County Republican Party. Throughout that time, I have found him to be an honorable individual, with a depth of knowledge that is unsurpassed in Colorado on federal land issues, and an asset to the county.
This makes the action by the Garfield County Democratic party and its chair, Bob Shivley, even more incomprehensible. Just over a month ago I sat down in the KDNK studios with Bob, my counterpart, and had a dialog on election issues. While we disagreed on many points (as expected) what we did agree on was that races on the local level have always been different — the candidates recognize that when the election is over, they must not only work with their political opponents, but that they must live with them; on the street, in the supermarket, at the high school football game on a daily basis.
I call on the Garfield County Democratic Party to renounce these baseless claims and at least return our local elections to a contest of ideas.