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The following Letter to the editor was recently received.

Dear Editor:

There is a very important election in November which concerns all citizens of Peters Township, Nottingham Township, Union Township and Finleyville. That election is for Magisterial District Judge (MDJ). This may be an “off- year” election and is not getting much attention from the voters or the media, but the election for MDJ will affect all of us for years to come.

In the primary election this spring, there was only one candidate on the ballot (Jacob Machel), who was the only person who knew that the incumbent MDJ was to announce his retirement on the last day before nominating petitions had to be filed. The current MDJ would have you believe that he has no ties to this candidate, and that it was only a coincidence, but clearly he had been planning this for some time.

Because there was only one candidate on the spring ballot for such an important office, and due to the manipulation which created that circumstance, Bill Merrell and I decided to run as write-in candidates. We both felt that having only one person on the ballot was unfair and that our communities deserved better. Although neither of us garnered enough votes to be on the fall ballot, our showing of support proved that the voters do not want the current MDJ to “hand-pick” his successor, and this is not Mr. Ellis’ election.

The race now is between 29-year-old Jacob Machel and 42-year-old Jesse Pettit, who will be on your ballot as an independent candidate. We are supporting Jesse Pettit.

This important election is not about being a Democrat or a Republican or an Independent. It is about who will be the best candidate to serve our citizens and our communities. Jesse Pettit is by far the most qualified candidate for Magisterial District Judge and he will bring back prestige and decorum to this office.
As we said, this is an important election which will affect all citizens of our communities for years to come. The term of office for Magisterial District Judge is six years.

The current magistrate has been in office for six terms, and will be finishing 30 years. If he is allowed to pick his successor, an unqualified successor, he has the potential to control the office for an additional 46 years. This just isn’t right.

Please citizens of Peters, Nottingham, Union and Finleyville, vote on November 7, 2017 for Jesse Pettit. He will be a Magisterial District Judge we can all be proud of.

Diane DiSalle, Democrat
William Merrell, Republican

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