In America everybody is elected. Not only members of the local, state and federal governments, but also sheriffs and judges. The election for local sheriff here was made more interesting because of a small scandal.
A was a candidate, and that in itself was questionable, because he had been suspected several times in the past of smuggling drugs and bribing police officers. His two sons are notorious drug smugglers and he himself has a security company for schools. A was never convicted of any crime, and the fact that he has that hundred-man personal army may have something to do with that.
But what put an end to this sheriff-hopeful? He had lied about his diploma. In order to be sheriff you have to have a high school diploma or a G.E.D., which is supposed to be the equivalent of a high school diploma, but everybody knows that it’s even easier.
He claimed to have his G.E.D., but that he had lost it, and that he didn’t remember when and where he took it. He’s about sixty years old, so that he lost his diploma is possible, but that you don’t remember when and where you got the only diploma you ever received is pretty unlikely.
In the end he admitted that he had lied, but added that he felt that a sheriff should be elected based on his experience, integrity, and honesty instead of on diplomas.
(From a letter in 1996)