Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Drinking and driving costs the sheriff of our fair city his job

Drinking and driving just doesn't pay; the consequences can be huge. Just ask Gary W. Waters, the sheriff here in Portsmouth for more than 20 years. He lost the primary yesterday.
Unofficial returns show W.O. “Bill” Watson defeated the incumbent by nearly 690 votes, taking 57 percent of the vote on a day of generally low turnout.
Oh, did I mention that Waters is the chairman of the Democratic Party here in Portsmouth? Yup. The party faithful gave him the boot.

Of course, here in Virginia registered voters can choose which primary to vote in. Many people I know chose the primary which gives them a chance to vote in whichever race they feel is most important. When John McCain was running for President, I voted in the Republican primary. Yesterday, I voted in the Democratic primary. Perhaps it wasn't the party faithful who gave Waters the boot, but rather the citizens of Portsmouth who were just over him.

Last year, Waters was pulled over for DUI; he was released by the police, but the incident later came to light in the press, and Waters ended up pleading guilty to the DUI charge. Last night, Waters was at a downtown watering hole; I wonder how much he'd had to drink.
The sheriff was interviewed at a campaign party, following his defeat, at Paddy O’Brian’s, a bar and restaurant. He acknowledged the incident hurt, “apparently, quite a bit.”
November will find Watson up against a Republican candidate, the relatively unknown Ronald L. Davis.

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