Looking for loopholes

Since Rep. Neal Collins’ election a year ago, I think I’ve uncovered a disturbing pattern.

Collins was employed in a Charlotte law firm, Brock & Scott, owned a home, and had an active voter registration in the Charlotte, NC area, at the time he filed to be a candidate. I believe he lived in North Carolina and set up his residency at his parent’s home here in order to be eligible to run for the Easley State House seat, skirting around the residency rules.

There was a school board election in November 2014. Phillip Bowers, Henry Wilson and Brian Swords won. Collins doesn’t like the way the two conservatives are voting, so instead of backing candidates to run against them in the next election, again he is trying find a way around the process. I think he has filed a bill in the state house to add another trustee to our school board, to tip the balance, which he and the other members of the delegation will select.

At the county Republican convention, party leaders are elected by local delegates who are seated according to the party rules. Mr. Collins ran for party chairman, but lost by a significant margin. Rather than accepting the will of the delegates in a by-the-rules way, he filed a protest with the state party. His protest was heard, and denied in a 34 to 2 vote.

Collins is a lawyer, and in my opinion is acting like a lawyer looking for loopholes or taking a route that goes around well-established rules and practices. I consider this disturbing.

John Schafer


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