Wayne’s Democrats have mounted a serious campaign for seats on the township’s council this year. Until recently the campaign was civil on both sides. But this week some of the Republicans have begun the “socialist” name calling. First they went after Dianne Douthat of Ward 2. She responded with a clear statement that she is a “common sense capitalist” – like most of us. Then another anonymous mailer came out accusing Fran Ritter in Ward 5 of asking the council for a handout to bail out Brittany Chase – a complete lie, as anyone can verify by reviewing the video.

Ms. Ritter helped lead Brittany Chase to replace its corrupt condo association board and was elected president of the new board by 86% of the residents. Then the new board brought suit against two companies and their allies who ripped off residents by billing for work never done, among other things. Next they unearthed a solution to the 395 unit complex sinking foundation problem that would cost  less than half a million rather than the $2.6 million the former board was ready to spend.

Not exactly the behavior of people looking for a handout. Rather the behavior of people looking carefully into problems and cost effective solutions – exactly what we hope our township’s council will do when it encounters issues. Ms. Ritter is the kind of person who is a natural for local government – not a politician, but someone deeply involved in our community. By the way, she grew up in the Bronx, worked for a decade, put herself through law school, and now works as a compliance one of our largest financial institutions.

Why the name calling? Wayne is a wonderful community. Nobody has been saying our all Republican government is terrible. Democrats have just been saying that we can do better, especially when it comes to traffic safety. What does socialism have to do with our streets? Don’t expect those Republicans who put out the nasty mailers to tell us – or to tell us anything about how to improve our township. Hopefully, the better Republicans will speak out against this kind of campaigning and welcome some positive Democratic voices on the council after the election.