The June 11 lead editorial, "Rebuilding Augusta's clout," mourned our area's notoriety in having, within the past year, three area politicians sentenced to federal prison terms for illegally using political office for personal financial gain, thus tarnishing "the city's political clout in Atlanta ... these days."
On an upbeat note, the editorial singles out "up-and-comers" Reps. Ben Harbin and Barry Fleming and Sen. Jim Whitehead (all Republicans from Columbia County) as political redeemers for our area. Further, it suggests that the private sector become involved in salvaging our political clout, a commendable proposal.
However, the editorial gives blanket dismissal to the Augusta-Richmond County delegation since most of them are members of the minority party in the General Assembly.
I am saddened, but not shocked, that the editorial voice of The Chronicle chose not to also mention up-and-comer Sen. Ed Tarver as an area asset. Sen. Tarver, who not coincidentally is a Democrat, provides a strong and ethical voice for the Augusta area in state politics, and he will serve his constituency well.
Please do not dismiss our Democrats in Atlanta simply because they are Democrats. And remember, two of the three recently convicted politicians are Republicans.
Lois Harmstad Hand, Augusta
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