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Economy still dogs Quitman voters

By By William F. West / community editor
Nov. 2, 2002
QUITMAN From the looks of things at the Hardee's here, "none of the above" should be on the ballot in Tuesday's three-way state Supreme Court contest.
During the early mornings and mid-afternoons, businessmen, city leaders and workers gather at Hardee's to talk about current events, politics and the timber and cattle businesses.
Ask them their take on the court election, and some will get up and leave or politely decline comment.
Others can be more direct in expressing their apathy about Justice Chuck McRae and challengers Jess Dickinson and Larry Buffington.
McRae, Dickinson and Buffington are competing for votes in a 27-county district that includes Clarke County.
At Hardee's, it doesn't take long to find out the focus is not the three candidates but plant closings and downsizings and high unemployment rates.
One of the regulars at Hardee's is Quitman Mayor Tommy Blackburn. He tries to encourage a positive tone of discussion yet also understands peoples' feelings.