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Letter to the editor
GOP chairman isn't leading party
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Forsyth County News


Forsyth GOP Chairman Ethan Underwood is now on record as stating that the reason his party couldn’t take a position on the proposed school tax hike is that he wasn’t authorized to do so by the county committee. Well, chairman, did you put the issue to the committee? Did you assert your leadership role in calling a meeting of the county committee and make a case as to why the Republican Party, the party that once stood for limited government and tax cuts, should oppose a tax increase?

Local Democrat leaders managed to get it done. The Tea Party managed to get it done. Only the Grand Old Party of Forsyth lacked the leadership to make it happen. While the Democrats and the Tea Party represent the hot and cold opposing positions on the issue, the local Republicans are apparently lukewarm. It makes me nauseous.

He claims to have been effective in shaping policy decisions by working one-on-one with elected officials. Really? Name one. The majority of commissioners successfully chilled public dissent by giving the local ethics board powers of retribution over claims that they deem to be frivolous. And the majority of commissioners successfully overrode the professional staff’s recommendation for banking services. Even more disturbing [is the fact that] some of the most important decisions are successfully passed with 2-1 votes. I thought we had five commissioners.

Are these the issues that Chairman Underwood has been effective in shaping through his behind-the-scenes, one-on-one efforts? Perhaps his one-on-one efforts to obtain their approval to apply for HUD financed housing for one of his clients is the “policy decision” that he refers to. Maybe he just prefers one-on-one activity so that the public at large won’t know which side of the issue he is arguing for.

If that’s the chairman’s idea of effective diplomacy, I’ll opt for the “bombastic statements to the press” that he so smugly dismisses instead. At least those are on record for the world to see.

Brant Meadows