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Friday, July 10, 2020


Trumpism Right Here in Sullivan County

May 14, 2020

To the editor:
Though we bought our place in Sullivan County in 1989, we only shifted our voting here more recently. I have been politically engaged on the national level for a long time as Watergate was happening when I was an undergraduate. Retirement last year allowed me the time to be increasingly interested in local politics.
Locally, I have been following a scandal in the SC legislature and I am shocked by what I am seeing. The issue is the appointment, jammed through the legislature by Robert Doherty, of Michael McGuire to be Sullivan County's attorney.
Mr. McGuire was just suspended from his judgeship by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct who determined him “unfit to serve”. You can read it for yourself here:
Court records are public documents and in these you will hear Judge McGuire's own disdainful words, largely targeting women with his abuse. The 13 charges brought against him all influenced the commissions recommendation that he be removed from the bench.
Why did Robert Doherty decide that this man, deemed unfit to serve by his peers, should be our new County Attorney? For that matter, why did Corinne McGuire, Mike's wife suddenly wind up in a new county tax-payer funded job in a county overseen by Robert Doherty? Sounds like corruption to me. Sounds like political payback to me.
Though there has been considerable protest and outrage regarding this appointment, the Legislature has refused to answer our questions. There have been a number of articles and letters to the newspapers that outline the details of this case. And there are the shameful, shameful words uttered by Judge McGuire that are recorded in the case files for all to see, for which he was suspended from his judgeship.
I naively thought that this kind of exposure of corruption would surely facilitate a just resolution by Mr. McGuire declining the position or Mr. Doherty rescinding the offer. But no, shame does not seem to be in their make-up. They are shameless, and will take the public dollar for all its worth. Throw the wife in there too, what's a few bucks more.
I just don't understand how this can stand. Such corruption, right in the open. I am so disgusted by public officials on the dole, washing each others hands in the insiders club. Make no mistake, the club is the Republican party, with seven of the nine legislators being Republicans. Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell have taught everyone that Republicans simply do not need to play by the rules, obey laws, appear when subpoenaed, provide documents. Robert Doherty is simply acting by the rules of his own Trumpublican club.
I ask you, would you like it if Mike McGuire spoke to your wife, or daughter, or mother, or sister the way he spoke to the women in the case documents? Would like them put in handcuffs as Mike McGuire ordered? Or would you demand justice for them? Would you demand that this man be driven from the county?
If you too are sickened by this bullying, by this good ole boy behavior, then I ask you to call them, the legislators, and let them know how you feel. This is our right, they work for us. These are not leaders, these are bullies, and weaklings, and thugs. Sullivan County deserves better. They will be gone when we make them gone.

Ken Wampler
White Sulphur Springs

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