When Comanche candidate for Justice of the Peace Johnny Conine called to ask if we would like to do an article on him as a candidate, I jumped at the chance to tell his story. Johnny is just one of four candidates (Doug Caffey, Johnny Conine, Rex Plumlee, Jim Watson) seeking the office of JP, and he brings an interesting twist into the race because Johnny Conine is first and foremost a cowboy, not necessarily someone that I would have expected to run for public office.
Johnny is homegrown, having lived his entire life in Comanche County. He graduated from Comanche High School in 1990 and has been involved in the ranching industry ever since. For the past sixteen years he has been employed by McCullough Cattle Company, owned by Janice and Joe Paul McCullough.
Of course, my first question for the young man who was my student once upon a time was what makes him believe that he is qualified to hold the office of Justice of the Peace.
“I’ve worked for Joe Paul and Janice since 1996, and I’ve seen over and over again that a man’s word is his bond. I also understand hard work, and I know the value of putting in an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay, something that I will bring to the JP’s office.
“Ranching requires a lot of just plain old common sense, and I know that when a man sits in authority he has to bring his common sense with him. Every situation is different, and I plan to keep an open mind and a make decisions only after weighing them and considering all circumstances. I’m here to serve Comanche County; I am positively NOT on a power trip, and I think this is the key trait that I want to bring to the JP’s office.
“I’m just a common man. I’ve never been in law enforcement and I’ve never held a public office, but I do know how to be fair and honest, and I believe that I am the right man for the job. I would really appreciate your vote.”
And that about says it all, I’m thinking.
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