I have lived in Walker County for 34 years, and have brought change to our county in many ways.
From finding old dilapidated homes and restoring them — which did help me but also helped Walker County — to fighting moral issues in our county such as standing against the freedom from religion people out of Wisconsin when they tried to tell our that they couldn't pray before ballgames.
Inspired to right a wrong, I challenged our church to make T-shirts and stand up for the local coach. Our church’s pastor was interviewed on local television and 200 members joined in.
Can we all agree that some things just simply need to be changed?
So here we are 2016 and I enter the race for the Walker County sole commissioner. I sign up as Republican, and like my opponent, pay my $3,412 qualifying fee.
All is well at first, I was greeted, signed up and had my picture made with the local party chairman. A day or two later, when out knocking on doors, I was invited into a living room and there sat the first chair of the Republican Party. It was explained to me by the homeowner that he did not know my opponent until the chairman brought the signs and literature to him.
As I began my Facebook campaign, I noticed posts from Republican Party members endorsing another candidate. I drove to party headquarters to express my concerns. The chairman was not present, so I called him on the phone. He told me that they had the right to do this and I expressed my disapproval.
As the GOP convention neared I was informed of the date and time and the fact that I was scheduled to speak. That was because the Friday night before the convention a stranger calls me and asked if I was going and if I was going to speak. If he had not called, I would not have known.
It has now come to my attention that the party has rules that can be changed. I found that at the time of our current chairperson’s election he did not qualify (for the office) because the rules stated that you must hold a seat in the party for at least one year before being eligible to be elected chairman.
He had not.
So what do they do? They make a motion to change that rule, vote to change and then hold an election and vote him in. All of this was done and fixed in five minutes while a qualified member who could have been voted on was present.
My question was what else can they change? So I looked up the National GOP rules and regulations for 2015 and it states: BE IT RESOLVED, That the Republican Party is the open door. Ours is the party of liberty, the party of equality, of opportunity for all, and favoritism for none.
The Walker County Republican Party has written and follows its own laws, separate from the national laws.
I am a Republican, but the bylaws of the Walker County Republican Party has rules I oppose. I know that favoritism has been initiated and have requested reforms be made in our county’s Party.
I did not enter this race to conform to things that I feel are not right. I entered this to right the wrongs and be transparent in doing so. I have debated my opponent twice and the incumbent once. I will debate them anywhere, anytime — except if the debate is held by their constituents. This was understood when earlier in the campaign my opponent would not debate in a fellowship hall, because it was where I went to church. I told the chairman days before the Republican Party debate that I would not be present because I felt they where biased. I was represented falsely in that I never agreed to do the debate on Saturday, April 30.
I now ask that ALL Walker County Republican Party leaders stop and desist from endorsing candidates before the general election.
Michael Wayne Peardon