I do not really know Tim Echols, though we encounter each other in the same evangelical circles on occasion. Many of my friends have always eyed him as a charlatan or huckster, but I try to give the benefit of the doubt to people in politics who are open with their faith. Often, people open with their faith in politics get labeled as a huckster or charlatan whether they deserve it or not. People are naturally, and largely justifiably so, suspicious of the wholly devout getting their hands dirty in politics.
In the past year, those of us trying to give Tim Echols the benefit of the doubt are left with only two conclusions. The first is that his critics are right and he is a charlatan using up the good will of evangelicals to advance in politics. The second is that he lacks any self-awareness about the perception and keeps digging deeper into the perception.
As a friend of mine would say, perhaps it is time to embrace the healing power of “and”.
His behavior on the PSC has been embarrassing. His excuses to repeated appearances of impropriety do not really hold up. And today he sends out an email that I struggle to reconcile with any sense of good decency for any Christian politician who is not a huckster, charlatan, or fraud.
Simply put, Tim Echols’s is behaving badly, seemingly lacks any self-awareness about it or does not care, and risks labeling the evangelical community that has supported him for so long as fools for their continued support.
Today’s example of callous self-interest involves his Easter greeting.
I’ve received several hundred Easter greetings from politicians in the past 48 hours from all over the country — federal office holders and candidates, state office holders and candidates, and local office holders and candidates from California to Louisiana to Florida to Maine.
Of all the ones I’ve received, only Tim Echols felt compelled to turn his Easter greeting into a promotional vehicle for himself, not his country or his God. Made worse, it wasn’t just a vehicle of self-promotion, but an Easter fundraising pitch.
Christ threw the money changers out of the temple upon his entry into Jerusalem. Evangelicals in Georgia might ought to consider the same next time Tim Echols in on the ballot. His Easter “send me money” email is below the fold.
From: Tim Echols
Date: Sun, Apr 8, 2012 at 8:24 AM
Subject: News from Tim Echols
I bring you Easter Greetings from the entire Echols clan on this beautiful weekend.
It is my honor to serve as Chairman of the Georgia Public Service Commission this year. I’m working hard to protect consumers, promote free-market and innovative solutions (particularly in the area of nuclear power), and champion conservative values in and out of the hearing room.
It is not easy to break into politics. Without the help of so many, I would not be where I am today–having won three elections in 2010 to finally attain the seat. I am grateful for the continued support and encouragement I am receiving. I am writing today to ask you to consider another donation to my re-election effort. Click here to give.
The PSC has dozens of judicial-like hearings, and we have a transcript of each one. You are always welcome to contact me and receive a full transcript where you can hear my questions to Georgia Power and others we regulate, as well as amendments and votes I cast. Surprisingly, I hear from very few ratepayers and citizens about issues before the PSC. I hope that changes over my term as I travel around the state and inform folks about the important matters we consider at the Commission each week. If you are in a Rotary or Kiwanis Club, I am happy to come out and make a presentation about the Commission’s work.
In the meantime, can you help by making a contribution to “Friends for Tim Echols” today? Please click the link below to make a donation, or mail a check to PO Box 80008, Athens, GA 30608.
Are you on Twitter? Follow me at www.twitter.com/timechols or on Facebook athttp://www.facebook.com/groups/timechols/
Thanks for your support.
Click here to make a donation to my re-elect campaign
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