Originally created 08/20/05

Rocky political debut

Rocky Napier wants Aiken Republicans to know he's one of them and would like their vote in the Sept. 13 primary for an at-large city council seat. His campaign stresses bringing residents from all sectors of the community together to get them engaged in city government.

Good for him. The 49 year old pediatric dentist says he's served on various educational and business boards throughout his adult life, thus setting an example of civic activism he seemingly wants others to follow.

That's all well and good, except that Dr. Napier throughout his adult life has also apparently neglected what most historians and educators regard as a citizen's No. 1 civic responsibility - to vote in public elections.

Despite being a lifelong Aiken area resident, the local elections board had no clue Dr. Napier existed until he showed up July 13 to register to vote - a legal requirement for anyone who wants to run for public office.

It appears his first vote for a Republican candidate won't be for President George W. Bush or Gov. Mark Sanford or Sen. Lindsey Graham. It will be for himself.

Talk about coming late to the party. Many Republicans are asking, "What has Dr. Napier ever done to help us? Why should we help him?" Indeed, the good dentist must have an outsize ego to expect Republicans to vote for him when he's never found any Republican good enough for him to vote for.

Just as bad, when asked why he had never registered to vote until July, his evasive answer was that he wanted to be in compliance with election laws. Certainly not very enlightening. Here we have a candidate who has never voted and now he won't answer a direct question.

It's back to serving on civic boards for him, because he surely doesn't seem ready for prime time politics.


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