“Negativity” : Pay no attention to the public record!

Close your eyes, ears and mouth and VOTE!

Close your eyes, ears and mouth and VOTE!

Letters in The HC News supporting Imbriaco, Peck, Marra for council suggest that you should ignore the public record of their candidates. It’s too negative!

Don’t look! Don’t listen! Shhh… just vote the way we tell you!

When a political candidate’s supporters complain of “negativity” when his public record is cited — it’s probably because the public record is not very favorable.

Check the letters for yourself. (Nothing to hide here — the more you know, the better.)

Letter #1  —  Letter #2

Donna Hogrebe and Marc Melloy essentially say: “Our candidate is good. Your comments about our candidate are inappropriate and negative. Voters, please disregard facts and citations of the public record that reveal what you need to know before you vote.”

Clinton Township voters are smarter than that. They want to see the record. They want facts. They want source material. They want to make up their own minds. They won’t be distracted by Machiavellian tactics, whereby campaigners accuse their opponents of the “negative attacks” they themselves are guilty of.

Melloy and Hogrebe should take a close look at their candidate Spencer Peck, whose public record is… well, close your eyes….
At the February 25 council meeting, Peck publicly made accusations of criminal activity — including theft and violations of state law — about the Clinton Township Council members, Clinton Township employees, and mayors past and present:
Here’s what he said township officials and employees are guilty of:

  • Favoritism
  • Cronyism
  • Graft
  • Corruption
  • A betrayal of the public trust
  • A raid on the public treasury
  • Collusion to subvert state law

FACT: Months later, Peck has never produced a shred of evidence to substantiate his accusations. (Maybe Peck’s accusations were just good-fun negativity.)
FACT: Peck has never filed any complaints with any legal authorities.
FACT: Peck’s running mate and new friend, James Imbriaco, is an attorney. Imbriaco has not filed any complaints with legal authorities, either.

But James Imbriaco did file a petition to run with Peck in the election. So did Peter Marra. Politics makes strange monkeys… er, bedfellows.

Spencer Peck has “contributed” to Clinton Township on 2 occasions in his 35 years living in the township:
1. Peck served as the township’s liaison to the county’s solid waste committee (SWAC). I appointed him.
FACT: Peck failed to attend any SWAC meetings in 2008, but failed to notify anyone.
FACT: Peck disparaged the county SWAC officials in a public meeting and said he did not respect them. That was his explanation for not attending the meetings and not telling anyone. I fired him.
FACT: During the time he was missing those meetings, Peck listed his SWAC role as “public service” in his mayoral campaign literature.
FACT: Peck accomplished nothing in the time he served on SWAC. 
2. Peck led a petition drive in 2007 to stop the township’s capital plan, which included trucks for snow removal, Fire Department equipment, renovation of our police station, acquisition of a new municipal building, road repairs, and other capital items.
FACT: Peck bungled the petition drive twice. He was not able to submit a petition that conformed to state law. Nonetheless, the council suspended its capital plan — to ensure that residents who may have been confused by Peck’s claims had time to understand it. The council then acted on the entire plan, which today is in place. No one from the public objected to it. Prior to the council’s vote to approve the plan, Peck withdrew his objection to it.

FACT: Peck accomplished nothing but waste tax dollars when the council had to re-do a complex bonding ordinance.
Peck’s supporters don’t like “negativity?” What they don’t like is facing their candidates’ public records. Claims of negativity are cheap cover for the unfavorable public records of Melloy’s and Hogrebe’s candidates.
James Imbriaco’s record is on display at the links below. Actually, you can see his record and hear it — in his own words. Oops, that’s more “negativity” — produced by Mr. Imbriaco himself, on his own behalf and at a huge cost to Clinton Township residents and taxpayers:

James Imbriaco: A public record of reckless arrogance

James Imbriaco: A legacy of appeasement, sprawl and higher taxes
“Negativity” seems to be the accusation du jour when facts are put on public display, and when the public record gets in the way of political agendas. It’s important to be civil and respectful in public discourse, but let’s not be intimidated into not discussing the truth.

When accusations of “negativity” are used as threats to stifle public discourse, the danger is clear: We risk electing the wrong people out of ignorance. The truth might indeed be negative at times. The question is, do you want to know the truth before you vote?

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