Letter: Thrasher responds to Tim Hutchins’ ‘misrepresentations’ on WBRT radio show

Dear Editor,

On Feb. 2, 2022, Tim Hutchins was a guest on WBRT’s “Bradford & Brooks” radio show. On the show, he brought up my name in regards to a Facebook post on the state highway department seemingly treating counties differently. (Click here for a YouTube video of the interview)

Someone sent me pictures of different county lines and how the other county’s state highway were cleared, but noticeably stopped at the Nelson County line. I was stating the facts about the different state highway districts, which appears to be a state management issue. This clearly is an ongoing issue that caused someone to go to several county lines that day to take pictures.

PARTY SWITCHING. Mr. Hutchins also brought up the reason why he changed parties in 2009. Hutchins criticized Billy Gentry for switching parties at the last minute, but Hutchins also switched parties to Independent a week before formally announcing to run in 2009. In fairness to the voters of Nelson county I have to
point out the following facts:

FACT: Tim Hutchins was a Democrat magistrate for 16 years (17 according to Hutchins).

FACT: On Feb 2, 2022, Hutchins stated in a radio interview “[In The 2010 judge executive race] I switched parties to Independent … I didn’t want to switch parties to Republican..I think it looks bad to switch parties at the last minute. ” (WBRT B&B Interview Feb 2, 2022)

FACT: In 2008 story by the Kentucky Standard covering an investigation of Hutchins allegedly using county property, Hutchis told the Standard he would be running as a Democrat for Judge Executive.“In response to the investigation and talk, Hutchins officially announced that he would be a Democratic candidate for Nelson County Judge Executive in 2010.” (Kentucky Standard Oct 28, 2008)

FACT: On Oct. 9, 2009, Rob Hamilton filed as a Democrat for Nelson County Judge Executive. This would have created a three-way primary race among three Democrats if Hutchins stayed in the Democratic Party.

FACT: On Dec. 16, 2009, after Hamilton files, Hutchins switches parties to Independent. By doing so, he avoiding a primary and went straight to the general election. But telling a different reason than what he is saying now. He told the Standard at the time:“More people are dissatisfied with both parties so I decided to run as an Independent.” … “As an Independent party affiliation is irrelevant to me as it should be all leaders.” (Kentucky Standard Dec. 29 2009)

FACT: Hutchins again ran for Judge Executive in 2014 as an Independent. But this time telling the Nelson County Gazette in a Letter To The Editor he wrote: “I am running as an Independent because I recognize there is good in both the Republican and Democratic parties” (Nelson County Gazette, Oct. 29, 2014)

Hutchins’ prior documented reasons for not running as a Republican are starkly different from the reasons he is giving now. If in fact he didn’t want to switch to Republican in 2009 because of how it would look to change at the last minute – then why did he still run as an Independent again in 2014?

I would respectfully ask Mr. Hutchins to run on ideas and what he will do differently, not criticizing me for looking into something I was asked to look into. Nor should he be criticizing Billy Gentry for something similar he did himself. Especially given the fact that Hutchins himself read the definition of hypocrite during the same interview. I am a lifelong Republican and glad to see people join our party,

it was my job as county party chair for years to get them to change. I don’t question someone doing so that isn’t running for office but primary voters like me are skeptical of people doing so for political expediency. Nelson County voters deserve the facts and honest debate on real issues that affect their daily lives. I will not criticize or attack my opponents in the primary but I will respond with facts when needed.

Don Thrasher
Republican Candidate For Judge Executive

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