Tuesday, September 05, 2006


A Lot of Voters Don't Like Matthew Hill

I was perusing some old issues of the Johnson City Press and I found a number of people who are not big fans Matthew Hill. The following are some examples.

A 7th District voter has not been impressed by Hill, according to his comments in the June 28 edition of the Johnson City Press: “We have viable candidates like Fred Phillips running for the state House of Representatives against Matthew Hill, who backs issues that don’t do much for people.”

Self-serving individuals (May 26)
Cover Tennessee sounds to me like a good plan to help the working men and women who make less than $25,000 a year.
Why, I wonder, would our region’s lawmakers vote against a plan to help our poor and uninsurable? Reps. Jerome Cochran (Carter County) and Matthew Hill (Washington County) voted last year to end TennCare for these same people. And now they have shown again they have no compassion for their fellow man.
Please help me in voting these two self-serving individuals out of office on Aug. 3.

Matthew Hill misguided (May 5)
I wonder who wrote state Rep. Matthew Hill’s “From the Hill” column in the April 23 Herald and Tribune? I would bet it wasn’t him. He quotes House Bill 242 that requires all driver’s license exams be worded in English. For those immigrants living in Tennessee legally, who can’t read or speak English, how should they obtain driver’s licenses if they don’t understand the wording? You guessed it, either the state must hire many multilingual interpreters or they simply drive without a license.
His mention of a program to allow the Tennessee Highway Patrol to enforce illegal immigration laws was defeated. What he failed to tell you is that only the Immigration and Naturalization Service has the authority to arrest and deport.
From a local taxpayer’s point, where would those illegals be housed? You’re right; in the Washington County jail. Normally INS does not retrieve those individuals unless there are at least 15 to deport. In the meantime, where does Hill propose we “deport” them to, one of the surrounding counties?
Now for the “sheltering” of the THP from political pressure by barring their participation in partisan political activities. The (Nashville) Tennessean reported on April 14, the six members of the THP with questionable activities were vindicated by District Attorney General Terry Johnson and would not be prosecuted. What Hill meant: don’t allow the THP to donate to them, but it’s OK for other public employees to donate to me and be involved in my political campaign.

Reps. have forgotten (April 14)
In regard to the letter submitted by Bill Smith in the Press on April 7, Reps. Matthew Hill and Jerome Cochran must have the same speech writer. I missed Hill’s statements, but noted that they were practically verbatim of the speech Cochran made at the Carter County Chamber of Commerce’s Legislative Breakfast on March 31.
I second Mr. Smith’s opinion. With the statements and voting records of these two representatives, no wonder we can’t see any accomplishments during the years of their tenure. The young representatives apparently have forgotten that the citizens of Washington and Carter counties voted them into office and expect no less than their bipartisan representation.
The voters have a choice this election year and they should use their vote wisely to elect representatives who will put the need of the citizens first, and personal bias aside.
D.J. C

Hill lacks bipartisanship (April 7)
It seems that freshman state Rep. Matthew Hill, R-Jonesborough, is a fast learner. He has mastered the vociferous and hateful fear tactics that so characterize the Republican Party of today.
Both sides of the aisle should be wary. His recent statement regarding the candidacy of the former sheriff of Washington County is wrapped in the cement confines of partisanship.
Obviously, Hill rebukes any idea of fulfilling his elected responsibilities for what is best for all. His statement leads one to believe that “Ford and Naifeh” are enemies rather than comrades.
The “if-you-are-not-with-us-thenyou-are-against-us” mentality has captured this young man’s soul, and is so reflected in his voting record. Hill’s brazen attempt at fear and intimidation does not play well with this reader.
I have no “horse in this race,” but I am still a Tennessean dependent on fair and bipartisan representation from all elected officials. With his statement, Hill represents neither of those qualities.

The April 7 Johnson City Press also had a letter-to-the-editor from a local voter who strongly supported the proposed “bottle bill” because it would help clean up and preserve Northeast Tennessee’s beauty. Naturally, Matthew Hill opposes the bill. Probably because of his ties to the Malt Beverage Association, a lobbyist group.

And finally, in the July 28 edition of the Johnson City Press, Hill received a letter-to-the-editor endorsement from a union supporter. I wonder if the writer and Matthew Hill have been participating in the recent Nuclear Fuel Services strikes in Erwin?

I don't plan on voting for Hill either.

Tom A. in Telford
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