Letter: Herbst response was political pivoting

To the Editor:

Pivot is a word defined as a central shaft, point, or pin on which a mechanism turns or oscillates. In politics, the term has another meaning, that is, the attempt by a politician to avoid answering a question by changing the subject. If you want to see a political “pivot” read the Letter to the Editor penned by Tim Herbst recently.

A Trumbull Citizen watchdog discovered what appears to be a campaign contribution to the Trumbull Republicans that violates state election law. This citizen then filed a complaint with the State Elections Enforcement Commission (SEEC) and that body found probable cause for an investigation. Curiously, the same campaign contributor later was awarded a no-bid contract by Mr. Herbst the value of which could be as much as $200,000. So, the questions are:

“Did the Trumbull Republicans accept unlawful campaign contributions?” and “Was the award of a no bid contract to this same contractor appropriate?”

Rather than answer those two simple questions, Mr. Herbst attempts to “pivot” by launching a diatribe that is remarkable only in its length and nastiness. He questions the commitment of the citizen to school safety, he attacks the Board of Education, he attacks a contractor/facilities manager and on and on. The only things missing are answers to the questions that were asked.

Of course Mr. Herbst does not tell the full story and creates innuendo that an uninformed individual might be deluded into thinking are facts. Mr. Herbst says, “Perhaps it is no coincidence that the facilities manager in question donated tens of thousands of dollars to the Trumbull Democratic Town Committee…”Would you find it interesting to know that the facilities manager also donated to the Trumbull Republican Town Committee? Interesting that that fact was omitted, isn’t it?

Clearly Mr. Herbst is unwilling to come clean and answer the real questions. The citizen who brought this complaint is not hiding; she filed a public complaint with the SEEC, the body that governs these matters. In fact, it is sad to see Mr. Herbst go to such lengths to confuse the issue. The SEEC will soon rule on the legality of the contributions to the Trumbull Republicans and I ask you this: Do you believe that, of all the contractors in the State of Connecticut, the contractor who made these allegedly illegal contributions was the only contractor willing and able to do the work under a no bid contract?” Do you believe that?

Kathleen McGannon