A big part of our problem
One of the biggest problems facing Gov. Fletcher and Kentucky Republicans as we approach next week's election is that the untruths and half-truths the Democrats are telling about the merit system hiring probe aren't being adequately countered. We've seen few public outlets besides this one get to the truth about the situation. The Conservative Edge has done a good job, especially regarding the recent deposition by Doug Doerting that he and the attorney general's office fought so hard to keep him from doing. Posters to many of the blogs, such as PolWatchers, have also run down a litany of truths about the situation. But many of the mainstream blogs and all of the mainstream media outlets have ignored the situation, or worse, allowed the Democrat lies to go unanswered.
The Democrats must be operating under the motto of "Tell a lie often enough and eventually the people will believe it."
A prime example appeared in last Friday's Lexington Herald-Leader. Prominent Eastern Kentucky Democrat attorney Ned Pillersdorf wrote an opinion column rehashing the personnel situation, and while doing so obscured the truth to the point that it was barely recognizeable. Of course that's to be expected from Pillersdorf, a liberal who's married into the Stumbo family in Floyd County and joined State Rep. John Will Stacy in criticizing the groundbreaking on a project to widen the Mountain Parkway to four lanes.
In Pillersdorf's column, he tells of a former Transportation Cabinet employee who supposedly lost her job because of politics. It'd be a sad tale, if only it was true.
The employee, Leslie Campbell, was let go before her probationary period ended because she failed to meet her probationary criteria. She was not replaced by a newly-hired employee with Republican connections. She was replaced with an employee who was already working for Transportation and who had to go clean up the mess she had left as timekeeper in the Wolfe County state highway garage. No indictments were ever issued as a result of Campbell's employment situation.
As for the allegation that she was told she could have a job if she changed her party registration from Democrat to Republican, that claim was made against someone who is not even in state government and has no authority to make personnel decisions. That's a far cry from the practice Democrats used in past years when state merit employees with authority to make personnel decisions told applicants they would not be considered unless they were registered Democrats.
We've already pointed out the error the press made in claiming that a Transportation employee from Western Kentucky was transferred 80 miles from his home, then the truth was he was transferred 30 miles closer to his home. Anonymous commenters on the mainstream press and Democrat blogs continue to make claims of merit employees being fired, when in fact that never happened. Only one merit employee was dismissed in an action that led to an indictment, and has been documented many times, he was on probation and subject to dismissal for any reason or no reason at all.
One of the failings of the Fletcher administration has been not adequately answering these outlandish and untrue charges, but that's not entirely their fault. They have repeatedly attempted to set the record straight with the press, but the big papers have never been interested in publishing Fletcher's side of the story. The Herald-Leader has known for months the truth that Doug Doerting approved all the personnel actions that he later claimed in his whistleblower complaint were improper, but the Herald has never pursued that story.
In the meantime, the Pillersdorfs of the world continue to spew their untruths without consequence to them. The consequence we will all suffer will likely be a huge step backwards for Kentucky if Steve Beshear beats Ernie Fletcher on the basis of the personnel investigation.