Mad, sad, depressed, disgusted – if those describe your reaction to the disclosure of the alleged crimes committed by former commissioner Archie Wilson, well join the club.
Mad at how someone abused the trust placed in him. Sad for the tragedy forced upon his family. Depressed, well that goes along with the first two. I am personally disgusted with both the details of the crime and with some who approach this tragedy with gleefulness in order to exploit it for their own political gain.
Former commissioner Wilson was endorsed for election over incumbent Scott Croswell in 2010 based upon the issue of economic development and the proper role of county government. In 2006, Croswell voted to expend approximately $8.2 million of general fund money, over 15 percent of county normal operating funds and over 37 percent of the beginning fund balance to intervene in the private market for economic development without any voter input. Such expenditure reminded many of President Obama’s failed economic stimulus of picking winners and losers.
After the endorsement Croswell bolted the party while making false personal allegations and subsequently filed to run as an Independent in the 2010 general election. Croswell would even get reprimanded by Governor Kasich for using a picture of Kasich on campaign literature without permission.
Wilson, who was serving his third term Batavia Township trustee, promised to bring fiscal conservatism to the board of commissioners. Wilson openly admitted to being a recovering alcoholic who at times could lose his temper. Hardly the current alleged crimes of trafficking and soliciting.
Before the endorsement I spoke with people who worked with Wilson at Batavia Township, business leaders, and other acquaintances. I received overwhelmingly positive reviews. I am sure that all were subsequently shocked by the current events.
The only way to have known about former commissioner Wilsons perverted proclivities would have been to have followed him 24 hours a day. To suggest that the Republican Party, its leadership, and the voters of Clermont County would put someone in office openly knowing that he participated in the activities alleged to have been committed by Wilson is sheer lunacy. I ask you who would risk their own good name and reputation over what gain?
As much as the alleged crimes of former commissioner Wilson disgust and sicken me so does the fact that some are trying to exploit this tragedy for their own political reasons.
Some have even tried to question the timing of a properly handled investigation in order to sow confusion. Why try to sow all the confusion and mistrust. Easy, we are in primary season and the timing of this tragedy could not have been better for anyone to exploit in order to raise doubts about the party and their endorsed candidates. We endorse based on issues. When you can’t argue the issues you use personal attacks, distortions, half truths and lies. Sounds like the tactics of a former commissioner and prominent criminal defense attorney currently attempting to distort the primary debate.
Pray for the family.
Tim Rudd is the chairman of the Clermont County Republican Party.