GOP PRIMARY: Being vocal is necessary

One of the greatest concerns of a democracy happens when voters do not know who their leader or representative is. In Senate District 57, it was always a no-brainer for a decade: residents appreciated and had great respect for Catharine Young.

Young was outspoken, passionate and always in front of the major area issues.

Today, three months since her abrupt resignation, her seat sits unfilled. Thus, someone needs to have a voice and a track record to get things done.

At a League of Women Voters debate last week, voters saw two men who have accomplished a great deal. In Curtis Crandall, chairman of the Allegany County Legislature for 14 years, there have been property tax reductions for the last nine years and fiscal stability.

His opponent, Chautauqua County Executive George Borrello, also can point to successes. He has built relationships with businesses, tackled the controversial issues of Chautauqua Lake, while also championing causes for a more skilled county work force. He also was an unquestioned leader while serving as a county legislator for 10 years.

In this corner of the district, we believe being vocal matters. Crandall has done little here in terms of making himself known. Borrello, on the other hand, has been from one corner of the district to another and seems to never miss an important event.

Those appearances — and statements — matter.

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In the Chautauqua County Legislature, we have been critical of too many of the 19 lawmakers for being far too silent. It’s almost as if they have nothing to bring to the table except “yes” votes.

It is the main reason incumbent Kevin Muldowney is a facing a party challenge from Ron Hall in District 1. The district has faced a number of serious issues, most notably the closing of the NRG plant and the relocation of the Brooks hospital.

In both cases, the incumbent has been quiet and unreactive. Silence, of course, has never made anything better.

Republicans, unified in the county but weak in the state, need strong voices moving forward. It especially matters in local affairs.