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Retired police sergeant files to run for Circuit Court clerk

July 20, 2005|by PEPPER BALLARD

Ernest E. Pletcher, a retired Maryland State Police sergeant and pastor of First Church of God in Mercersburg, Pa., has filed to run for clerk of Washington County Circuit Court in the 2006 election.

Pletcher, 62, who filed as a Republican, said he voted for incumbent democrat Dennis J. Weaver in the last election, but feels "it's time for a change," according to a letter he wrote to The Herald-Mail.

He listed his address as 16728 Tammany Manor Road in Williamsport. An Elections Board official said Pletcher filed July 12.

Weaver, who has been clerk of the Circuit Court for more than 18 years, said Tuesday that he plans to run again.

In a telephone interview Tuesday, Pletcher said he feels Weaver has done a "commendable job," but he has problems with the Democratic party, with which Weaver is affiliated.

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"When the renowned U.S. senator from the state of Massachusetts stands before the national media and basically declares war on the next Supreme Court justice nomination, things have to change. When the liberal left declares that I, as a conservative Republican, am radical and out of the mainstream, then things have to change," Pletcher wrote in the letter.

"Yes, I am a conservative Republican but I am not radical nor am I out of the mainstream. I believe that I and many people even within the Democratic party are directly in the center of the mainstream," Pletcher wrote.

Pletcher wrote that he feels his diverse background will help him serve the public. He served more than 22 years with Maryland State Police, according to the letter. He said he has been pastor of the Mercersburg church for the past nine years.

He said, "I don't have any problem with administrative work, whatsoever."

"I bring to the table of this election, diversification, experience, knowledge and a lifetime affiliation with the Republican party that has a values system that I feel very comfortable with," Pletcher wrote.

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