I'm not an Andrew Thomas fan. There are many who credit this post for his 2010 loss to Tom Horne.
Thomas seems to divert every question so that the answer involves securing the border and he claims that he won't be bullied by the "homosexual lobby." That last part is obviously controversial and to back up that statement, Thomas refers to SB 1062 that was the subject of intense national pressure, was ridiculed by the other gubernatorial candidates and was vetoed by Governor Brewer.
I think that Thomas has tapped into a large sector of the Conservative community that is stunned that President Obama and Hillary Clinton could oppose gay marriage as late as 2008 yet the position that marriage is between one man and one woman is now considered to be unacceptable in reasoned debate. That's been the fastest major social change in history and while much of it was accomplished by winning hearts and minds, some of it has been accomplished through intimidation.
There are powerful arguments for gay marriage. Gay people are forming families and raising children. They require the framework of family law.
But to you gay activists who drove Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich from his job for supporting traditional marriage, here's what we know about you:
1. You think social change as momentous as the redefinition of marriage should happen without debate.
2. You are vengeful winners.
3. You are frightening.
Many of the folks who share Boas's views will vote for Thomas.
I moderated the Homebuilder's Gubernatorial debate and I can certainly see nuances between, say, Smith and Ducey, but from the perspective of non-establishment Conservatives, the four major candidates are all the same.
They are also all credible.
At this point, it seems like Ducey and Jones are leading, but I don't trust auto dialer polls that use small samples. I think that the Bennett, Ducey, Jones and Smith will each do pretty well...which means that a candidate might win with 21%. If Thomas successfully positions himself as the only non-establishment candidate, then he will have carved off a very large slice of the Republican electorate for himself--and that large slice may be more than 21%.
There are two other factors at play. The first is that Thomas supporters may not be the most likely to answer polls but they will be the most likely to show up at the polls. So he's more likely to pull an Evan Mecham type upset.
The second factor is from the dirty tricks department. Arizona Democrats want Andrew Thomas to win the Republican Primary. And in the past they have shown a willingness to spend significant amounts of money in order to manipulate the Republican electorate. So don't be surprised if Thomas's "Stand up the Gay Lobby" message gets a lot of independent financial support from mysterious sources.
I've linked to Thomas's ad below. My guess is that you will be seeing a lot of it.
The Arizona Republic likes to demand "Civility" but doesn't like to show it. I've pointed out that on the day the paper announced the winners of its "Civility" essay contest, Steve Benson published a cartoon that depicted Governor Brewer as Libyan Dictator Muammar Gaddafi.
There are a lot of different definitions of "Civility" or the lack of civility. I think the most common example incivility is simple name calling. Here's a recent example in which the Republic shows no self awareness or sense of irony.
GOP primary voters are faced with a choice between an incumbent who fails to meet a basic civility threshold for public service, and a single-issue challenger whose depth of knowledge about education rivals a cardboard cutout.
That's right. The author chides Huppenthal for failing to meet a "basic civility threshold" and then in the same sentence says that his challenger's knowledge about education "rivals a cardboard cutout." Which is, of course, a statement that fails to meet a basic civility threshold.
The front page of today's Republic has an article about parents who don't vaccinate their kids. The Science is settled on this one folks. Vaccinations are safe and save lives and not only the lives of your kids, but the lives of the kids who associate with your kids.
I thought this sentence was interesting.
The state health department has teamed with the University of Arizona to attempt to encourage families of school-age children to get vaccinated. That means tailoring the message to the crowd. With exemption rates higher in more affluent communities such as Sedona, Humble said his agency presses messages that may resonate, such as social responsibility.
I wonder what the rich people in Sedona think of Climate Change?
Study after study has shown that vaccines are safe, fracking is safe, genetically modified foods are safe....but there's a certain segment of the population that simply chooses to ignore the science.
Notice that the headline has "republican" with a small "r". Three years ago, I said that Arizona's Prop 105 "Voter Protection" act was a violation of the United State's Constitution. You might want to go back and review the full post, but the abbreviated version is that the US Constitution guarantees that every state will have a "republican" form of government. That means we don't get a monarchy and we don't get direct democracy. The Supreme Court has said that the initiative process that's so common in the western states is not a violation of the "Guarantee" clause.
However, I believe that when you combine the initiative process with "voter protection" you have violated the Guarantee Clause. That's because the only way to change a "voter protected" law is by a direct vote of the people. The framers created a republic, not a direct democracy, and they guaranteed that the states would be republics as well. States that require that laws be amended by the people are violating that guarantee.
The problem is that the courts have ruled that Guarantee Clause cases are political questions. Now that's starting to change. The folks in Colorado have had their spending constrained by the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights (TABOR). They argue that their legislature--which recently turned Democratic--should be allowed to spend and tax using a simple majority. The 10th circuit recently ruled that this is NOT a political question and the court will rule on the merits of the case.
In Friday's 49-page decision, the 10th U.S. Circuit notes the "Supreme Court has held that members of a state legislature may have standing to sue in order to vindicate the 'plain, direct and adequate interest in maintaining the effectiveness of their votes.' "
So why am I mentioning this now. Because of this....
Southern Arizona's Tohono O'odham tribe on Thursday moved a step closer to winning its contested bid to build a casino near Glendale's sports and entertainment district.
The U.S. Department of the Interior reaffirmed its decision that the tribe's land at 95th and Northern avenues is not within Glendale's city boundaries.
The Tohono O'dham want to build a casino that's hundreds of miles from their southern Arizona reservation. They are using loophole after loophole to get it done and more importantly, they are violating the spirit, but not the letter, of the compacts that were approved in 2002. The other Valley tribes oppose the measure, and of course, Glendale, Peoria etc oppose it as well.
However, the Compact that authorizes the extra casino...is in statute. If the Legislature wants to stop the Casino, they could simply change the statute. But the tribe will argue that the statute is "Voter Protected." At that point the Legislature will point to the US Constitution and say that "Voter Protection" violates the US Constitution.
Then the Tribe will say "But that's a Political Questions..."
And the Legislature will say..."Have you heard about the TABOR case in Colorado..."
The Legislature has the authority to deny the Casino. The question is whether or not they have the political will.
...combined print and digital revenues have fallen by more than 55 percent in the past decade, and the industry’s share of the digital advertising market has been cut in half over the same period.
That last phrase is devastating for newspapers. A few years ago, newspapers were saying that they would be fine because their content would just migrate to the web. They would be providing the same product but on a different platform.
Nearly seven years ago, I pointed out that web advertisements generate far less revenue than comparable print advertisements, so even if they keep their entire audience--or even expand it--they won't replace their lost revenue.
Now look at the last line of the statistic again. Newspapers had quite a bit of initial digital advertising, but that has steadily eroded. That's logical, those ads are going to Facebook, Google and Twitter.
That means that newspapers have no business model left.
So the next step is to continue cutting costs while trying to maintain as much revenue as possible. That means tha this is the likely next step:
He suggests that most should consider giving up their weekday print editions altogether at some point over the next few years, and focus all of their efforts on a single print version on Saturday or Sunday, while pouring all of their resources into digital and mobile. Weekend papers account for a large proportion — in some cases a majority — of the advertising revenue that newspapers bring in, so giving up everything but the Saturday paper wouldn’t be as much of a loss, he argues.
In a recent piece at the Columbia Journalism Review about the New York Times, writer Ryan Chittum argued that the newspaper can’t afford to simply stop printing because the physical version brings in so much revenue. But could it stop printing everything but the Sunday paper? Chittum thinks it might be able to, and so does long-time online journalism watcher Steve Outing. Perhaps new digital-strategy head Arthur Gregg Sulzberger — a co-author of the paper’s much-publicized “innovation report” — is already crunching those numbers for a presentation to his father, the publisher, whose family controls the company’s stock.
The nation’s statehouses lost more than one-third of the journalists devoted to covering legislative matters full time, according to a study released on Thursday morning by the Journalism Project at the Pew Research Center.
The study, which surveyed all 50 statehouses, found a loss of 164 full-time statehouse reporters since 2003. The total number of full-time statehouse reporters dipped to roughly 300.
Tell me if you would like this characteristic in a State Representative.
State Rep. John Kavanagh’s interests have always been bigger than the Scottsdale Fountain Hills district that elected him for four terms.
That sounds good. I don't want a State Representative who is parochial and won't focus on statewide issues. This is especially important in Kavanagh's case because he's the Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee. You defiantly want your budget folks to have a statewide perspective.
However, this sentence is part of a Republic Editorial AGAINST Kavanagh. The (anonymous) author considers this lack of parochialism to be a negative factor.
The author next provides an example that's supposed to make us understand that Kavanagh's focus on state issues is somehow bad.
Fighting illegal immigration was more important than thinking of the tourism industry vital to his district, for instance.
Well, I guess we know now that the editorial was written by Linda Valdez. I'm curious what the rest of the caucus would think if Kavanagh focused on Scottsdale tourism at the expense of issues of statewide significance? When I was in the Legislature, we had a word for people who focused on statewide issues instead of the specific needs of their districts....let me see...it was "Statesman."
Next let's move to a hilarious non-sequitur combined with some wishful thinking:
Is his the type of representation a historically moderate district wants?
So does this mean that moderates are parochial?
And is Kavanagh's Scottsdale district "moderate"? To be sure, the district has had the occasional legacy moderate--Randall Gnant or Caroline Allen for example. Michelle Reagan doesn't consider herself moderate, but Valdez probably does. However, those examples seem to be the exceptions.
David Schweikert represented the district in the Legislature and then in Congress. Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane is no moderate.
The editorial makes very little sense. But that doesn't seem to matter to Valdez--she wants Kavanagh to be replaced and the actual arguments are secondary.
This article about APS funneling money into the Secretary of State's race is sponsored by....APS.
(I've added a Post Script below the picture.)
Post Script: I've been really hesitant to cover this story. Not only do I practice in front of the ACC, but I'm a friend of the Pierce family. So I'm going to assume that there has been no coordination or quid pro quo. So that means that APS has dicided to make these contributions on its own. I have to ask....what the Hell? I mean, seriously, is this even legal?
Think about it. If APS wants to spend 500K on the ACC races, that's poor judgment, but it's legal. Afterall, they have an interest in the outcome of the ACC races.
However, they don't have any interest in the Secretary of State race. This looks like they are simply spending a couple hundred thousand dollars in order to help the son of a sitting Commissioner. Is that a big "thank you"? Is it a message to the other Commissioners so they know that they can expect support in the future?
Think about it, the gift provision is so strict that If one of the ACC Commissioners' kids were to get married, APS couldn't buy them a place setting. So forget about election law, what about the gift provision? So I'll say it again.... APS has no interest in this race and they are going to spend a couple hundred thousand dollars getting a sitting Commissioner's son elected to the Secretary of State's office? I simply don't see how that's legal.
In addition to the statistic that Gonzalez quoted and then ignored:
A Border Patrol memo summarized interviews on May 28 with 230 women and children apprehended after crossing into Texas and concluded the main reason for their arrivals was a belief they would be allowed to remain under Obama’s policies.
There are other quotes that he didn't bother to include, such as this one:
Although EPIC lacks reliable reporting of Central American newspapers broadcasting the perceived benefits of U.S. immigration policies, several U.S. media outlets since June 2014 have identified Central American newspapers that have enticed minors to travel to the United States. For example, Honduran and El Salvadoran press have reportedly advertised the DACA policy, accommodations for detained UAC, and the promise of reunification with family members in the United States.
It seems to me that Gonzalez doesn't believe the evidence because it somehow conflicts with his world view, so he has decided to simply dismiss it and declare that Brewer's statement is somehow "unsupported."
It's time for an explanation or a correction. Brewer's statement is more credible than Gonzalez's rebuttal and if the "Fact Checkers" are going to have any credibility at all, they need to correct themselves when they are clearly wrong.
Here's a fun game. Let's say that you are writing an article about the legislature's controversial vote to expand Medicare. It's a complex issue; the legislature is evenly divided and there are really good arguments on both sides. The issue has become critical in Republican primaries.
The game is that I want you to write the MOST BIASED one sentence description that you can. Then see if you can beat this one that Mary Jo Pitzl wrote.
The result of the Aug. 26 primary could determine whether the Legislature hews to an agenda driven more by rigid adherence to “tea party” principles or to one that weighs issues on their merits.
Wow. Good job. The half of the Legislature that opposes AHCCCS expansion did so because of rigid adherence to "tea party" principles.
The other Legislators weighed the issues on "their merits."
It's a great experiment, see if you can write a more biased sentence and then get back to me.
The most troubling aspect of the APS hit piece against Vernon Parker is that it relied on old charges that were long ago discredited. Parker's attorney--former US Attorney Paul Charlton--has released this press release regarding the false charges. In the statement, Charlton refers to his original letter demanding that a previous candidate stop making false statements. Here's a copy of the original Charlton letter.