Editor's note: This letter refers to a Bethlehem Democratic Committee meeting on Primary Day (Sept. 10). Bethlehem Public Library records show a committee meeting was held on Wednesday, Sept. 4, not on Sept. 10.
Editor, The Spotlight:
Supervisor Clarkson, leader of the so-called “Bethlehem Reform Democrats,” and his cronies in the group have been successful during the past two years in duping those who supported them. The group advocated for transparency and participation within the Bethlehem Democratic Committee, but once they gained control quite the opposite has been their practice.
The fact is in 2012 when the committee convened to elect officers, the newly elected “reform group” committee members occupied fewer committee seats but had a majority of the weighted vote. Nevertheless, the “reformers,” with their overseer looking on, demanded and insisted on a secret vote, contrary to the transparent show-of-hands or voice votes that had worked so well for years and had been common practice.
The fact is Matthew Clyne admirably led the committee for many years and worked tirelessly to see the day Democrats were elected to town offices and ultimately to supervisor. Fellow Democrats were always encouraged to participate in the intensive work of the committee but few ever voluntarily stepped forward to serve. The supervisor chose not to be actively involved, but in 2011 during candidate interviews he gave the impression he was entitled to be fed the party endorsement for supervisor on a silver spoon.
The fact is the “reformers” controlled committee this year engaged in the exact same process as they criticized for endorsing candidates for public office. Unfortunately, the supervisor seemed unwilling to accept the committee endorsements and failed to openly and actively support all the party candidates.
The fact is the most recent committee meeting was held on Primary Day which prevented those committee members who work as election inspectors from attending. Coincidence? Doubtful!