On the Campaign Trail with Sheriff Candidate Joe Talley
Note. This article is another in a planned series on “campaign encounters” as we make our rounds of political events in the county. See: A Look at the Candidates for County Office at the Voters Coalition
This morning, I happened to be at the Supervisor of Elections Office on Military Trail at the same time as a crowd was gathering in the parking lot and the local media was setting up their cameras. As the window was closing on qualification for the August election, Sheriff candidate Joe Talley was holding a press conference, surrounded by a good sized crowd of his supporters in red and white shirts.
Joe Talley with Samuel Thompson
After giving a few interviews, Mr. Talley assembled the team for a photo-op and made a brief statement.
“I have today qualified before the Supervisor of Elections and we are now entering the home stretch to bring integrity, fairness, open and honest leadership, and service to the taxpayers and employees of the Sheriff’s Office.”, he began.
With him was another candidate for Sheriff, former PBSO deputy Samuel Thompson who has decided to withdraw from the race and support Joe Talley. Mr. Thompson congratulated Joe on his qualification and asked all of his supporters to get behind Joe in the coming months.
Continuing his remarks, Mr. Talley appealed to the current PBSO employees: “So many of you have shared so much with me. You have this one opportunity in your career to boldly stand up and cast aside the intimidation and threats you are receiving. We can end this facade and horrible waste of career potential and allow you to move through your careers proudly and productively, with fairness at every step.”
And then to the voters of Palm Beach County: “This county is in a mess right now. The broad chasm between the citizens and the Sheriff’s Office is a very dangerous place. We must end the nonsense and the window dressing and get busy with the serious work of repairing the relationship with all the citizens in every part of this county. That must begin by speaking with respect and with dignity and with honesty. My friends, you are not electing a czar. You are not electing a king. You are electing a Sheriff who is to be honest with you.”
It was quite a statement and it appeared that his team is organized and ready to get to work. We expect that this year, incumbent Ric Bradshaw will have his work cut out for him if he wants to keep his job.