Lee P Butler

Republicans Are Seeing a Change in Richmond County
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Calvin's Snowmen

11-21-2002

I would like to thank everyone in Richmond County who voted on November 5. Many Democrats in this county sided with Republicans as an attempted change in ideological principal here in the same manner that swept the state and country. The losses by Republicans here were not unexpected, but everyone should take note that as each election year passes, Richmond county is finally seeing a dichotomy in the political mindset of its residents that is evident in the final vote totals.

The appearance of fissures in the monolithic hierarchy that has controlled the county for so many years should come as no surprise to anyone. The leaders of Richmond County seemed to strive for a goal of keeping the county isolated and devoid of differing political aspirations. Their fears were justified. When given choices, the people realize they can achieve goals of their own without adhering to the mandates of the good old boy club, which has lead directly to the deterioration of that power structure.

As the article in the Daily Journal on November 3 explained, Democrats have controlled this county since 1900 and one politician pontificated that 'the Democrat Party has remained strong here, because it has been a leader for the working poor,'. A completely partisan political statement in an otherwise objective story that didn't shine a favorable light on Democrats here, because the reality is Richmond County has the second highest unemployment rate in the state of North Carolina. If only one party has been in control, then only one party can take the blame.

Yet some have tried tirelessly to place that culpability on the only high profile Republican elected in this district. His vote for fast track legislation has been vilified time and again, yet Democrats lobbied vigorously to pass the same legislation for Clinton, but nobody seemed to have a problem with it then! Why isnt the media just as quick to point out how Democrat attacks on the tobacco industry through countless lawsuits and tax hikes are just as responsible for the debilitation of our states once number one industry and the destruction of the North Carolina farmer as much or more than any other factor?

Before placing blame or expecting too much from the politicians we elect, it has to be understood that not only are they our elected officials, but they are also members of political parties. All the varying ideological principles are supported through the party vote, so understanding the issues of the parties is essential when deciding your vote for a particular candidate.

Voters realize this more than ever and the results of it were apparent in the vote counts of November 5, nationally and even in Richmond County. Conservative ideology runs strong through the South and the party that represents those principles is finally being heard!


Lee P. Butler

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