HAMILTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WDEF) — One of the most controversial political races in Tennessee is now cluttering postal and social media mailboxes throughout East Ridge.
It has been a bitter race between the two Republican candidates running for the District 8 seat on the Hamilton County Commission.
The incumbent, Tim Boyd, was arrested for criminal extortion at the beginning of April. The other candidate, East Ridge mayor Brent Lambert, is trying to dodge complaints made about his alleged misuse of campaign contributions.
Everyone seems to have an opinion, and they’re voicing it on social media. One particularly active post in the East Ridge Friends and Neighbors Facebook group has neighbors sparring, trying to prove which candidate is more corrupt.
The most recent topic of discussion is Brent Lambert’s mailers that attacking Boyd.
“I think that having Lambert smiling shaking the hand of an employee on one side, and then having what you would see in something like Just Busted on the other is slimy and a real candidate shouldn’t have to resort to those tactics,” East Ridge resident Laura Seneker said.
But pointing out Boyd’s arrest isn’t helping Lambert, according to many we talked to.
“I think most people can see what Mr. Lambert is trying to pull. I think people are tired of those tactics,” John Tribble said.
Those we spoke with are more concerned about Lambert’s interactions with Exit 1 developers and the alleged misuse does campaign donations.
For those people, Boyd’s extortion charge is a mute point.
“Hasn’t hurt any other politician I’ve every known for the last 25 years. Doesn’t matter what they do,” Tribble said.
The numerous Lambert supporters we spoke with didn’t want to be quoted, but they felt Boyd’s extortion charges are too serious to be overlooked.
Make your voice heard in this controversial election by voting Tuesday, May 1. East Ridge polling places are open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.