GOP Spokesman Laughs at Attleboro Candidate

Democratic state House candidate Paul Heroux wrote that people who care about their communities vote. However, he has not voted in most elections. The state Republican party spokesman calls this "comical."

Tim Buckley, communications director for the Massachusetts Republican Party, called 2nd Bristol District (which includes most of Attleboro) state representative candidate Paul Heroux a hypocrite Tuesday for writing an opinion piece last year saying "we who care about the future of our local communities" vote, while it was revealed last week he has failed to vote in most elections. Heroux responded that his voting record is perfect since writing the piece.

The op-ed, which appeared in various media just before the local November 2011 election, includes quotes about the importance of voting from real-life and fictional people. Quoting Gov. Willie Stark, the character based on real-life Louisiana Gov. Huey Long, from the movie All the King's Men, Heroux wrote, "If you don't vote, you don't matter."

The election that came after the publication of Heroux's piece was the first local contest in which he ever voted.

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"This is typical 'do as I say, not as I do' behavior from Mr. Heroux," Buckley told Attleboro Patch.

He called Heroux's piece "comical."

"Whenever a politician is urging others to do one thing, in this case the all-important act of voting, and the politician does another thing, it's hard to take the person's statements seriously," Buckley said. "And it's hard not to laugh at this opinion piece."

When asked about Buckley's comments, Heroux noted that he has voted in all three elections that took place since the publication of his piece. 

"I'm a regular voter, but not a perfect voter," Heroux said.

Heroux became eligible to vote when he turned 18 in 1995. He did not exercise that right until the 2004 presidential election. His next trip to a polling station was in the 2008 presidential election. Heroux voted in four of the next seven elections.

Patch obtained Heroux's voting record from City Hall last week after he complained that the wife of his opponent, Rep. George Ross, had done the same thing. Jeanne Ross' alleged action was an example of the incumbent playing dirty, Heroux said.

"My voting record has absolutely no bearing on how I'm going reduce tax waste in Massachusetts or help bring mental health services to Attleboro," Heroux said Tuesday.

Heroux's voting record came to the attention of Buckley after he read the article on Patch, the communications director said. He said he was amazed to see this, and did additional research, which led him to the op-ed. He contacted Patch about his discovery. But Buckley said the state Republican party is not focusing on this contest, stating "all the races are important."

Adam Tellier October 17, 2012 at 02:27 PM
Very well said Mr. Buckley. He raises a very valid point, of that Paul Heroux cannot deny. A regular voter would be more active than voting only once every four years. I also can across that article during my research of Mr. Heroux, I found his statements to be rather bluntly stated. Now, with this newly learned information regarding his gaping voting record, it credits Heroux as the hypocrite that he truly is. It is shameful when someone does not follow their own advice, let alone quoting "If you don't vote, you don't matter." Let it be known that nothing in this article is taken out of context because you can read for yourself Heroux's article here: http://attleboro.patch.com/blog_posts/future-of-attleboro-depends-on-your-vote This article was written and published just one year ago on November 4th, 2011. I would only hope that Mr. Heroux has had a "perfect" voting record since that was published, because there was only one election since then. Using Paul Heroux's logic, that is " we who care about the future of Attleboro will go to the polls to cast our vote", up until last year he did not care about the future of Attleboro. I am not saying, in my opinion, that he does not care. However, that previous statement was based off of his logic. What does this say about the hypocritical candidate himself? Just that, he is a hypocrite. We can further infer that someone who is hypocritical does not do as they say. Furthermore, Paul Heroux may not do as he says he will.
Bill K. October 17, 2012 at 05:38 PM
IF and that is a huge IF, Mr Heroux wins the election, it is my hope that his voting record on the hill as a rep will far exceed that as a voter in Attleboro!! But he may be too busy reducing tax waste in Massachusetts or helping to bring mental health services to Attleboro, fighting for prisioner rights, saving baby seals, et al to improve on a less than stellar record.
Jonathan Friedman (Editor) October 17, 2012 at 06:01 PM
The previous two comments were actually posted this morning, but did not appear on the site until now due to a technical reason. Further comments should appear on the site immediately after they are posted.
Jonathan Friedman (Editor) October 17, 2012 at 06:03 PM
For the record, there have been three elections since Heroux's opinion piece was published.
Adam Tellier October 18, 2012 at 12:15 AM
Mr. Friedman, To which are you referring? To the best of my knowledge there have only been two elections since November 4th, 2011 (the date that your website advertises as the date of the publishment) the last local elections and the september primary elections. I do not believe that Mr. Heroux voted in the primaries. However, I may be mistaken in that aspect of my response.
Jonathan Friedman (Editor) October 18, 2012 at 12:23 AM
Adam, there was the local election on Nov. 8, 2011, the presidential primary on March 6, 2012 and last month's state primary.
Gretchen Robinson October 18, 2012 at 01:20 AM
when Republicans are losing they don't work harder for your vote, they cop out, attack, and grasp at straws. In this case George Ross needs to be proactive and overcome his tendency to be passive by agreeing to another debate or two with Heroux. Ross can start discussing the issues instead of squandering any approval he had by his shabby campaign so far.
Richard W. Lunt October 18, 2012 at 04:53 AM
The George Ross campaign isn't a shabby campaign. His campaign and the members who work on his committee are excellent and trustworthy people. Paul Heroux's voting record is shabby, in fact, it stinks because there is a lack of voting in elections because of his so-called lack of interest in political races. What happens if, and that is a big if he is elected and he goes to Beacon Hill, will he use the same lack of interest tactics when he votes, will he vote on legislation whenever it suits him or works to his advantage?? Those are serious concerns. George has a 100 percent voting record and as a voter when I choose a State Representative who is going to work for me and the constituents of Attleboro, the committment to the voting record is an absolute must, George brings that to Beacon Hill. Can't say the same thing for Paul Heroux based on his lousy voting record in local elections.
Tom Dowling October 18, 2012 at 06:36 AM
Richard, I perceive no faults with an intermittent voting record. If a person is away from the area because of employment requirements or military assignments they may not have sufficient access to the news from home to make an informed decision. Even if people are not absent from home but circumstances distract their attention from election issues they may not have sufficient information to make an informed decision. In such cases is it preferable for that person to cast a 'stab in the dark' vote or refrain from voting so as to not negate the vote of an informed person? People who do not vote consistently are not necessarily shirking their civic responsibility. If they are abstaining so their uninformed vote does not negate the vote of an informed voter they are actually furthering the cause of electing a government that is truly representative.
Bear Cat October 18, 2012 at 11:32 AM
I want Mr Heroux and Mr Ross to to have a healthy debate and tell this community what they will do going forward. Lay out your plan. Let's stop the nonsense, your voting records are in the past, I am interested in the future.
Adam Tellier October 18, 2012 at 01:10 PM
Very well put. The debate is coming.
Jonathan Friedman (Editor) October 18, 2012 at 01:19 PM
Adam: Your post is inaccurate. There was a Democratic primary election in March even though Obama was the only person on the ballot. City Hall voting records, which I will post shortly, show that Heroux voted. There was an option on the ballot for "no preference." 81 people in Attleboro chose this option, according to the Boston Globe. http://www.boston.com/news/politics/2012/president/primaries/mass/2012_democratic_presidential_primary_results/
deb of see-attleboro October 18, 2012 at 01:31 PM
Tom: I agree there are legitimate reasons for abstaining from an election. Uninformed voter is not one, IMO. Number one: A civic minded person is informed. Number two: Even if he/she is undecided or dislikes the choices, there is always the option of submitting a blank ballot.
Just sayin' October 18, 2012 at 01:33 PM
Gretchen, you could exchange "Republicans" with "Democrats" or even simply "Politicians" in your first sentence. I have met Heroux and personally I like him. However, I find it unsettling that he was going to run for another office a few weeks ago and then changed to this race. This along with his voting record makes me wonder why he wants to be in politics so suddenly. I really like and agree with a lot of his platform, but I question his effectiveness and commitment. That being said, I also like George Ross the few times I have spoken to him in passing at the AFM and around town. I'm not as familiar with his platform (so I have some homework here) however I don't doubt his commitment to 'we the people'. Regardless of whether or not it is primarily self-serving he is very visible, and there is good that comes out of that in the end. I would be nice to have multiple debates - that is admittedly a concern for me as a voter.
Adam Tellier October 18, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Thank you. I wanted to make that known.
Sarah October 18, 2012 at 05:57 PM
Ok, I am just going to put this out there. THE MOST unsetteling of all of this hullibilloo is that Paul claimes he could not figure out of to file an absentee ballot!!!! REALLY? For the professional student that you are, I question your ability to do your homework. That is a skill that is necessary in the State Rep job. Go the extra mile Paul... Go back to the drawing board on your plans to attain an elected position. Do a little more homework. And stop insulting the people who do actually vote.


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