Three Oconee political incumbents are explaining why they have turned down The Journal’s request to sign a transparency pledge. Joel Thrift, Reg Dexter, and Ken Nix say the oath they took when elected to office four years ago is adequate and all that’s needed for them to carry out their duties. Thrift and Dexter are ballot candidates for re-election next month as Oconee County council members. Nix seeks a second term as auditor. A fourth candidate, Terry Wilson, running as a petition candidate for sheriff, also spoke at yesterday’s news conference. The candidates said while they respect the newspaper’s right to report the news and editorialize as it sees fit, they believe the paper will issue formal endorsements of their opponents.