My family and I attended the Cherokee County School Board candidate forum last Thursday at the Cherokee County Historic Courthouse. It was hosted by the Cherokee County Republican Women, the second largest Republican organization in our county. It was an well-organized, unbiased forum designed to allow all candidates to answer questions from the moderator which were submitted by the audience before the forum got underway.
All eight candidates running for the four seats up for re-election had confirmed their attendance well in advance. However, two candidates bailed out at the last minute, failing to face their District 5 and District 6 opponents, leaving their opponents alone to answer the questions.
The candidates who canceled at the last minute accused the organizing group of bias and cyber-bullying as their reason for canceling. While I am not a member of this organization, I follow them as well as all of the county’s Republican-based groups and that accusation is simply not true. They are a wonderful organization run by smart, politically-active local women who do great work.
We have not made up our minds on who to vote for in May and attended this forum to hear the candidates explain their platforms. We wanted to hear their vision for our school district and answer the same questions as everyone else. This was a very fair and civil forum that was the perfect avenue for them to expound upon why they are the best candidates. Instead these two chose to cancel at the last minute. That says volumes about their character and conviction, or in my opinion.
If you don’t have the backbone and fortitude to meet your opponents face-to-face in a civilized public forum as has been an American political tradition since the early 1800s, then you should not be running for public office.
They both just lost any chance of a vote from our household and I’m sure many others also.