With all eyes on the top three races in Virginia as well as many key House of Delegate races probably one of the most important local races in Northern Virginia is happening in Fairfax County for the Office of the Sheriff. This year Sheriff Stan Barry announced his retirement from office for family and personal reasons which resulted in a special election to be held with the November 5th election. Fairfax Democrats nominated Captain Stacey Kincaid, a 27 year member of the agency and the Republican Party nominated retired City of Fairfax police officer Bryan Wolfe. While not much media attention has focused on this race, Captain Kincaid received probably the most coveted and important endorsement in the race in that of the Fairfax Deputy Sheriff’s Union. She has also received the endorsement of nearly every public employee organization to endorse in this race to include the Fairfax Firefighters Union and the SEIU Governmental Employees Union. Bryan Wolfe, on the other hand has received little support from working men and women in this race. Recently, at a League of Women Voters Candidate Forum it became quite apparent as to why. Captain Kincaid is first, Mr. Wolfe begins at 2:14.
My initial response to Mr. Wolfe’s introduction was nothing; I was literally speechless. After watching it a few more times and processing it I felt bad for the voters who came out to learn more about the candidates who want to be their next Sheriff. Instead, Bryan Wolfe gave them an angry and unprofessional introductory tirade which had nothing to do with the election and the issues facing the citizens of Fairfax County. He goes out of his way to vent about his unhappiness over what happened to his property but he goes out of his way to directly stare down Captain Kincaid, almost accusing her of being behind what happened. Running for office is similar to working as a law enforcement officer, you can’t bring your anger or personal issues into the job; sadly Bryan Wolfe doesn’t know that. However, what is more telling are his complaints about how the tone of the race has gone thus far.
During his tirade, which at times can been interpreted as irrational, he said he believed that running for office would involve:
“professionalism and courtesy, politeness, ladies and gentleman acting appropriately.”
This comment is odd coming from the candidate who has allowed his Facebook page to become a clearinghouse of negative attacks, comments and insults on Captain Kincaid and insinuations of wrongdoing against the deputies working in the agency. This comes from a candidate, who had a Facebook supporter call Captain Kincaid a “Scumbag” and instead of Mr. Wolfe addressing the uncalled for comment against his sister in law enforcement, he goes and “Likes” the comment, basically endorsing the comment. It’s important to note that most political figures, candidates and advisors specifically note that Likes or RTs don’t imply endorsements, but Wolfe has no such disclaimer. Another Wolfe Facebook supporter called Captain Kincaid “ugly” and Mr. Wolfe, as a “30 year police officer” should know that has no place in a election that should remain professional and that an individual’s looks have no bearing on their ability to do their job.
Towards the end of his tirade, Mr. Wolfe also noted the date “12/14” which is the date of the Sandy Hook massacre in Connecticut. He said he wanted to know what Captain Kincaid – or as he refers to her as “that woman” refusing to even acknowledge her by name – has been doing since the massacre. This is another area where many viewers were left scratching their heads. Throughout this campaign, Captain Kincaid has called for common sense background checks and supports the assault weapons ban. Mr. Wolfe, who proudly proclaims himself as a member of the NRA, an organization that adamantly and staunchly opposes those common sense and supported initiatives. Given the absolutely negative campaign Wolfe has run I can only hope he doesn’t attempt to use the Sandy Hook tragedy for his own political gain.
Once this video started going public, prominent blogger Ben Tribbett correctly observed that ignoring this race is potentially putting citizens in danger because he can’t imagine someone who can become so easily unhinged eventually being Fairfax County’s top law enforcement officer. This incident from Bryan Wolfe is just one of many examples as to why he is exactly what Fairfax County and the Sheriff’s Office DOES NOT NEED when the agency is ready to keep moving forward as one of Virginia’s top law enforcement agencies.