When I read the Aug. 17 Xpress article about the City Council candidates, I immediately noticed TJ Thomasson [“And Then There Were Nine”]. I thought, “Great! A gay candidate that can represent me.” My excitement over the prospect of a young gay man on City Council led me to look deeper into what this candidate has to offer our city. I was extremely disappointed by what the research had to say about the potential for Thomasson to represent me, or anyone in our city, with any degree of responsibility or morality. My research showed that Thomasson has a criminal record and has documented financial issues.
I will not be voting for Thomasson in the upcoming election despite my desire to see more representation for the LGBTQ community on City Council.
My quest for information on this candidate led me to first check him out on Facebook and Linkedin. I noticed he has held three jobs in the past year and a half. I know the economy is rough, but his poor work history needed some explaining. Why would I give someone a job to represent me for four years when that person can’t hold regular employment for any significant period of time?
Since this information sent up a red flag, I ran a background check on Thomasson and the results were troubling. Besides small infractions like speeding, driving with an expired registration (twice), driving without an inspection and driving without insurance, there are other documented incidents. He was arrested and convicted in 2008 for selling alcohol to minors. In a separate incident, he was arrested and convicted of possessing drug paraphernalia.
On top of all this, Thomasson went bankrupt under Chapter 7 within the past seven years. Thomasson is clearly not a person who should be representing Asheville.
What I found was Thomasson’s documented past; there is probably more that he does not want you to know about. There are better candidates out there; vote for someone else this election.
— Jeffrey Wolfe
Editor’s note: See Thomason’s response here.