It is unfortunate that someone like Ms. Secord is given so much ink to spread her vitriolic agenda. But when personal attacks are seriously defamatory and largely fiction, sometimes they deserve answer and correction. This is the case with Ms. Secords’s letter of May 13.

The article she complains of was written by the Gazette, not me. I was interviewed about the subjects therein. Was she the one who pushed that old news to the news desk, both here and in Moscow two years ago? Apparently it didn’t go as well as hoped this time. The negative spin she wanted was superseded by actual, professional journalism.

She attempts to denigrate my wife and I over a 25-year-old tax case. While we did lose our case with the State Tax Commission after appeal, there were no taxes or fines paid. It was resolved, at the request of the Tax Commission, by filing a zero Income return. It was shown administratively, that the Tax Commission based their original claim on projected gross income from a loan application, not actual taxable income. There, the rest of the story.

And tax evasion she says? No. I simply did not meet the threshold during that time that would require filing. Again, a zero facts claim.

Refused to appear in court, but went to trial anyway, she says? First, I have always been present for appearances in court, with the exception of telephonic hearings that I participated in from home. Second, trials in absentia pretty much never happen in this country. The defendant is always present. basic court procedure. Wrong again.

Yes, we have no trespassing signs in our driveway. The basic kind you can get at Ace Hardware. They don’t threaten to shoot anyone.

“He definitely will not have the respect of fellow legislators…”, she says. I’ve been endorsed by Lt. Governor Janice McGeachin. I personally know many legislators and have worked with them on several bills and testified at numerous hearings. I am also active in the Republican Party, a state party officer, a current member of the county, region and state central committees. Not exactly wild west renegade stuff. And yes, I would like to see an end to property taxes, along the lines of this year’s HB 359 proposed by Representative Monks. But that is a long process of revision with constitutional and statutory reconstruction. You know, like legislation, not radical revolution.

It is a shame, after her good work on the commissioner’s resource commission and water rights that Ms. Secord chooses to waste her political capital on such acrimonious defamation for no discernably good purpose. Stealing and destroying my signs. Coaching negative surrogate writers. Feeding defamatory information to the press to poison the public mind. These things have sadly been her politics for years.

She’s trying to make news with distortions, omissions and fabrications of quarter century old events. It’s time to move on, Ms. Secord. I have. Let’s build a better Idaho.

Hari Heath

Santa, Idaho

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