The politics of personal destruction

Matthew Geary, former candidate for Commonwealth’s Attorney in Henrico, dead of apparent suicide:

Geary’s campaign ran into trouble after a highly orchestrated attack on his character by Republican leaders, including U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor, R-7th. The leaders revealed that Geary had engaged in an affair with a married woman in recent years.

I watched this happen from afar, knowing none of the players personally. It was not a pretty sight.

This is why the legislature won’t pass a bill to allow party ID on the ballot for local offices, even when that office is nominated by party. Because it allows party officials to support another candidate – in this case, former Del. Bill Janis, who gave up his seat to run as an independent.

We’ll never know what caused Geary to take his life, but no doubt this effort to smear him played a role. Some people can come back from this; others cannot. Those who participated in this smear campaign should be ashamed of themselves.

My thoughts and prayers are with Geary’s family today.

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2 thoughts on “The politics of personal destruction

  1. Read the story, it is one of the saddest I have read in a long time. This guy seemed like the type that we would love to have serving as prosecutor anywhere. Well liked by law enforcement, well liked in the legal community. His downfall was standing up to the party, which ran, apparently, a lesser candidate and lost.

    It shows, to me, how a large part of what is wrong with our political system is they way the parties (collective, not individual) act.

    My thoughts, too, are with Mr. Geary’s family.

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