I watched and listened to the debate between the candidates for Southampton Village trustee yesterday [“Video: Southampton Village Candidates Participate In Virtual Debate,” 27east.com, September 4], and I am glad I did. The debate was astoundingly exciting, revealing and informative! Congratulations to the moderator, Joe Shaw, who kept control of the discussion, moved it forward, gave each candidate a fair chance to address issues, and asked the right follow-up questions to shed light on how the candidates would fulfill their responsibilities as trustees.
I’ve known Joe McLoughlin for a few years, and we have been friends, despite the big differences between us in age and in many views. On every score that counts, Joe is his own man. He is totally honest, highly principled and totally dedicated to this village.
Joe never stops working for our village. I have watched him at dozens of our village regulatory board public hearings, although he had no official business there at the time, but he took the time to become as informed about village affairs as he could.
And so we have been friends across the generations and across the differing views on a number of subjects. It’s in the way Joe bridges those differences that he won my respect. Joe listens to the ideas and opinions of others, weighs them when they differ from his, and then he is able to either reinforce his original views or to modify them, in line with his own principles.
I cannot think of more important qualities in a trustee than being able to listen to others and to consider ideas different from his own. Ultimately, it comes back to character. I can certainly vouch for Joe’s.
I left the debate wondering how I could have missed getting to know and befriend Gina Arresta before. Her impassioned performance during the debate convinced me that Gina is an experienced leader, well-informed about our village, articulate and capable.
This attractive businesswoman is not beholden to any interests other than our village today and tomorrow. Gina won’t give an inch to any special interests. She will be a powerful voice for our village and for our residents as trustee of this village.
Trust, as in trustee, depends on the trustee’s character. It always comes back to character, doesn’t it?
Both of these two excellent candidates are beholden to our village, our residents and our future. They are both fiscally knowledgeable and responsible. They are both wedded to the rule of law. I trust both of them. Both have my vote to be elected as the strong and reliable trustees that our village needs.
Attorney at law
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One fine body…