We are thoroughly distressed to note that our state senator has been prominently addressed in two national newspapers of late. We understand that Sen. Murphy is accused at the federal level of gross negligence in his position on the Board of Directors of a Georgia bank and that he is being sued by two other banks for non- payment of loans.
Nevertheless, he has been appointed as chairperson of the state senate banking committee. Are we the only ones to question how a sitting senator can ethically oversee legislation affecting state banking while he has such financial stakes in those companies directly affected by the legislation he is responsible for?
If that’s not enough, it seems that our state legislative ethics overseers apparently do not seem to be bothered by the apparent conflict of interest, the breach of his moral duty to meet his legal debt obligations, or his being accused of gross negligence as a director of a bank. It certainly seems to us that he should at least be required to step aside while these matters are being dealt with in the courts.
We freely admit that we have little or no confidence in how ethics issues are handled (or not handled) in our state and national governments. In fact, we consider the ethics process to be little more than a sad joke that is not funny. The local Republican Party leadership also does not seem to be distressed by these matters. It seems unlikely that they will take any action in the matter.
Maybe it is time for the citizens of Georgia to consider a recall initiative. We wonder if there is a process which would allow for a recall of a sitting state senator?
Mervyn and Mary Burns