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Next up in our primary election poll series is the Republican race for the District 5 Board of Commissioners seat. Who will you vote for?


tylercollum: July 21, 2012 11:11 a.m.

Visit to read the campaign's response to Mr. Walden's open letter regarding the ad in Friday's Covington News.

tylercollum: July 21, 2012 11:14 a.m.

Please visit wesleydowdy(dot)com to read the campaign's response to Mr. Walden's open letter regarding an Ad that was printed in Friday's Covington News.

tylercollum: July 21, 2012 11:16 a.m.


As for the portion of the ad about Levie, you should know that the party leadership supported Mr. Maddox before everyone running had even declared their candidacy and they did so publically. This was not against any rules of the party according to the state GOP, but it is against “customs and traditions of the party.” So we used that information.

Mr. Maddox has been vague about his professional experience. He hasn’t given a clear answer in any of the forums as to where he has worked or currently works and what his current role is. When we called to find where Levie works, we couldn’t get a straight answer from employees either.

As for Ronnie, he was booted out of office before and we stated this information. And we really do not need another Walmart. Though, if he has more available land, I wouldn’t mind a PGA Tour Superstore.

So, you are correct in stating that this was gamesmanship. This is a campaign for office. And we are in this to win. We aren’t in it to say the same thing at every debate. We aren’t in this to give everyone ten word answers they want to hear. We are in it to win. If you want someone who will tell you what you want to hear just to get your vote, vote for someone else. Mr. Dowdy is the best candidate. He is a fresh approach to leadership. He is a solid conservative that no democrat would wisely give money to. And local party leadership will not push him around. He will represent the people not a party because the people will have elected him.

The ad put issues people are concerned about in print form in the paper. It didn’t call anyone a “baby killing liberal,” a “tax evading corporate fraud,” or “corrupt man with many lovers.” The race was cold with the scent of fresh ink from Levie Maddox signs. The ad added a little heat to a race that needed some heat. Do you know what they say about not being able to handle the heat?

Again, thank you for your concerns. Please let Mr. Rutberg know Wesley’s family appreciated his visit to their home Friday night. Wesley looks forward to supporting Jared if he is a frontrunner in the race. I’m not sure what you mean by Mr. Dowdy needs to “check himself”… I think the ballots are electronic and are touch screen, but you can rest easy knowing he, along with many others’, will be “checking” Dowdy.

tylercollum: July 21, 2012 11:18 a.m.

In response to Mr. Walden –

Thank you for your concerns.

Let me address them:

Let me address the portion of the ad regarding Jared. I’ve asked around to several people and I’ve confirmed that calling someone a Democrat isn’t a negative. I’m not sure why being labeled a Democrat is such a bad thing unless you don’t want anyone to know you’re a Democrat or unless you aren’t a Democrat. But just being a Democrat isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

The ad simply referred to a private conversation with someone who was guaranteed to remain nameless. We have appealed to that person to allow us to use his name but he doesn’t want his name out there. If keeping our promise to him means we take a hit for it, then we take it.

The ad also refers to many conversations within the party regarding Mr. Rutberg’s position on some issues and his financial support.

It also plays against Mr. Rutberg’s platform (a platform he laid-out) that boasts strong community leadership. It doesn’t bash him for being a strong leader. It simple draws a line that just because someone is a strong community leader doesn’t make him or her able to lead in government. And I referenced Mr. Obama as having done the same boasting.

The picture was a funny picture of Jared, one that he certainly didn’t mind people seeing. And it was playful in spirit – and we appreciate Mr. Rutberg finding the lighter side of the picture and telling us the story behind it.


djwalden: July 21, 2012 11:42 p.m.

For those of you who haven't yet seen my letter to the editor that prompted Mr. Collum to respond on behalf of Mr. Dowdy, is the text of the letter

As a resident of District 5 in Covington, I have followed the County Commissioner's race with great interest. I have spoken directly with 3 of the candidates running on the Republican ticket for this district's seat including Mr. Dowdy, Mr. Maddox, and Mr. Rutberg. That said, Mr. Dowdy's use of an unnamed source in a CovNews advertisement on Friday defaming Mr. Rutberg, is the worst kind of political gamesmanship. Mr. Dowdy should check himself. I know Mr Rutberg, and I know that he is a conservative to the core. Mr. Rutberg and I don't agree on everything, but he doesn't deserve to be maligned in the name of a political contest.

I also know Mr. Maddox. I have worked with him in the corporate world, and know him to be a man of competence and integrity...truly a man who has "worked on nearly every level of business." Creating a print advertisement that accuses him of "lack(ing) the experience to get the job done on the BOC" and of being "on the puppet strings of the party" are creations of Mr. Dowdy's mind.

Both Mr. Rutberg and Mr. Maddox have more experience and have contributed more to the community than Mr. Dowdy has in his short residency here. Mr. Dowdy could have been a welcomed, fresh voice in our county's government, but he has chosen to take a negative approach in order to win an election to a seat that he is clearly not prepared to fill.

djwalden: July 21, 2012 11:48 p.m.

And for those of you who don't know who Mr. Dowdy OR Mr. Collum are, you should know that they are cousins from Floyd County, Georgia. Furthermore, Mr. Collum has an interesting history that includes an arrest two years ago on charges of embezzling $15,000 - $30,000 from a church he worked for in Rome, GA. Here are the details:

I'll leave it up to you to decide whether these two can be trusted with the truth.

DustinKetchem DustinKetchem: July 23, 2012 8:22 a.m.

If this is the kind of representation and political infighting you want to see in Newton County vote for one of these guys. You have an alternative. Vote for a Candidate that will work across party lines, and who started this campaign promising to work to build concensus on the board of commissioners. Phil Johnson. Find out more about Phil at

dawgs14: July 23, 2012 9:38 a.m.

Levie Maddox is a life-long resident of Newton County and has a concern and love for D5 that cannot possibly duplicated by candidates that have lived here for only a few years. That is a simple fact. Mr. Dowdy, I have been to a couple of forums in which you have spoken and your tone assumes everyone else in the room is an idiot. Mr. Rutberg, you are a very intelligent business man that is practical and you have the demeanor to get elected but again, you cannot duplicate the concern for this county like Mr. Maddox. Because of that concern he will do what he has to do in conjunction with the other members of the board to lead this county. Vote Levie Maddox D5!!!!

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