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Opinion

Winds of Change in Fayette County

by Michael D. McCumber

Disclaimer: The editorial below does not necessary reflect the opinions or beliefs of Fay-West.com.

November 4, 2003
An editorial on Fayette County's political change as the Republicans now make up the majority of commissioners for the first time in 80 years with the election of Joe Hardy and Angela Zimmerlink.

It appears the residents of Fayette County have woken up and finally said no to the Democrat party machine that has often been blamed for scaring employers away which has allowed poverty to stay. For the first time since perhaps 1922, the Republicans will now make up the majority of the county commissioners. Congratulations go to Joe Hardy, who built Pennsylvania's only Five-Star resort in Fayette County (Nemacolin Woodlands), and Angela Zimmerlink.

When the Republicans last held the majority of the commissioners Fayette County was a booming and prosperous place, but within a few decades the Democrat machine started up in full gear along with some hideous examples of corruption. While external forces led to Fayette County's economic downfall, the Democrat party bosses exasperated the problem by making the business climate here particularly unfriendly. The corruption of Fayette County's political machine was well known throughout the Southwestern Pennsylvania region. The machine had been kept in power because the vast majority of the county's voters only pulled one lever. Despite having led our county into economic ruin the Democrat machine could always count on maintaining their power, well at least until now.

Joe Hardy's can-do attitude, and business success might just be the thing to turn Fayette County around. Hopefully he can kick the “Boss Hoggs” out of the Fayette County government once and for all. Being a web guy, I really hope he'll do something about Fayette County's “Official” web site. While never short on funding (much of it state and county), it has never amounted too much more than an embarrassment for the county.

I'm growing confidant in Fayette County's future. Our county has always been extremely blessed with some unique and beautiful treasures along with a rich history. Now maybe we'll have a government that will promote them instead of standing in their way.

In any case the Democrat machine now knows the living voters, as opposed to the dead (who will always vote one way), in this county can no longer be taken for granted.

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