Saturday, April 12, 2008

Ragsdale's chickens come home, begin to roost

Under normal circumstances, I would be inclined to see a divorce between a political couple as an entirely personal (though thoroughly unfortunate and improper) matter that would deserve little print space here. In the case of Knox County Mayor Mike Ragsdale's wife filing for divorce, circumstances are not what could be considered "normal" in the sense of what might be termed "political privacy."

It notes the couple has been separated since January 21, citing "inappropriate marital conduct" on the part of Mayor Ragsdale.

"The plaintiff (Claudia Ragsdale) alleges the defendant (Mike Ragsdale) is guilty of such inappropriate marital conduct as renders further cohabitation unsafe and improper," the filing reads. "Plaintiff further alleges that the parties have such irreconcilable differences that the marriage should not be allowed to continue."

"The plaintiff alleges that she has been true to her marriage vows, that she has given defendant no just cause for his misconduct, nor has she condoned the same," the filing continues.

In the filing, Claudia Ragsdale asks for transitional alimony due to Mayor Ragsdale's earning capacity, Claudia Ragsdale's compromised health condition, and Mayor Ragsdale's "marital misconduct." Claudia Ragsdale has been fighting cancer.

What makes this a political story is the fact that it shows a continued pattern of abuse on Ragsdale's part. It was written in this space on Valentine's Day that Ragsdale was running around on his wife. What makes that such a significant fact is that it is apparent that Ragsdale used taxpayer money for some of his personal gratification with the ladies, and even used federal funds to buy liquor for the retreat where the woman or women he may have had adulterous relationships also happened to be present-in violation of both law and ethics (of which he has none, while expecting them of others).

When one considers that Mike Ragsdale has used his surrogates to try to ruin others' careers, his chickens are coming home to roost. Ragsdale is a pitiful malcontent, totally unworthy of the trust and rigors of public office.



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