“Hurley in the Morning” has exclusively obtained a copy of a wide-ranging, blunt letter written by Andrew Parker to his opponent Thelma Witherspoon.

The two are currently embroiled in a protracted, official legal contest challenge for the third district Atlantic County Board of Chosen Commissioner’s seat.

Here is the full copy of the letter, as written by Parker as follows directly below.

January 19, 2021

Dear Thelma:

You and I were both dealt a bad hand when County Clerk Ed McGettigan sent out hundreds of erroneous ballots in our District 3 Freeholder (now Commissioner) election last November, leading to the disenfranchisement of voters and requiring an expensive special election.

Our Superior Court Assignment Judge has said that the buck stops with Ed McGettigan. Last week, our two Democratic Assembly members Mazzeo and Armato said that “recent mistakes by the Atlantic County Clerk and his office have shaken voters’ confidence beyond repair.”

I agree and have called on McGettigan to immediately resign for the good of our county. His incompetence will cost Atlantic County taxpayers thousands of dollars in running our special election on April 20 and he still has not even offered to help pay for it out of his own pocket.

For all these reasons, I was surprised when you hired an attorney to sue the Board of Commissioners so you can fill the now open seat for only a few months until the April 20 election is held. Not only does this force the Board to have to defend itself in court to answer the tortured argument being advanced by your attorney, but to make matters worse, it unfairly seeks the payment of your legal fees by Atlantic County taxpayers.

Did you know that your lawyer has demanded to have their fees paid by taxpayers as a result of your litigation against the County? It’s not too late to fix it.

We owe it to the voters to start this campaign positively. I’m asking you to join Assemblymen Vince Mazzeo and John Armato and me in calling on Ed McGettigan to step aside so you and I know that our special election will be run fairly and competently.

For the good of Atlantic County, I ask that you immediately drop your lawsuit, pending court appeal and your request to obtain legal fees and costs from the taxpayers. Our voters have it hard enough trying to keep their jobs during the pandemic and make ends meet. They don’t need to be paying attorney fees to get you seated for a few months. I think we can both agree that sends the wrong message to the voters. Unfortunately, they’re already paying more than they should have to with the expensive special election because of Ed McGettigan’s horrendous mistake.

Instead of fighting your campaign in court, let’s take our message to the voters. Let’s drop the multiple lawsuits and focus instead on the April 20 election ordered by the Superior Court. Let’s have a debate between you and me. We can ask the Mainland NAACP to moderate a candidate forum so you and I can talk about our vision for Atlantic County.

I’m looking forward to a spirited race and hope you’ll join me in calling on McGettigan to quit, dropping your lawsuits and agreeing to a debate soon so voters can learn more about us and the issues.

I look forward to your response.

Sincerely,

Andrew Parker

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