If you are following the dominoes, you will recall that Congressman Ed Pastor has announced his retirement, which led to a stampede of Democratic elected officials announcing that they are running for his seat.
Kyrsten Sinema who is currently the Congresswoman from the neighboring but highly competitive District 9 told advisers that she is considering jumping to the safe District 7.
The elected officials who are already running for the District 7 seat cried foul because the District 7 seat is considered an Hispanic seat.
The media have indicated that Sinema has street cred for the jump because she's bisexual.
Steve Gallardo, who is one of the Hispanic elected officials running in District 7 then announced that he is both Hispanic AND Gay.
My guess is that Sinema was caught off guard by the Gallardo announcement and will schedule a press conference in order to announce that she has discovered that she is 1/16th Cherokee.
I continue to be amazed that the Bush Derangement Syndrome Chorus is completely silent about the abuses of the Obama Administration. President Obama is engaging in mass deportations and has assassinated US Citizens abroad while those who were outraged by Valerie Plame and signing statements remain silent.
So to Linda Valdez and her fellow travelers, was it all for show? Was it just mock outrage? Or was it real outrage, but now that President Obama has become Bush on steroids it is somehow OK? What are you going to do if the next Republican President dials it back to the Bush level? What if he or she still assassinates people using drones, but agrees not to kill Americans? What if he keeps the "warrant less wiretapping" of the Obama Administration, but doesn't collect ALL the data, or limits it to foreign phone calls or agrees not to spy on Congress or the Associated Press? What if he goes back to the Bush policy of only deporting people who are caught in the process of crossing the border?
What will you do then? Will we be back to outrage and claims about shredding the Constitution? Or will you finally admit that your guy is worse than President Bush on every issue that you claimed to care about?
I love springtime in Phoenix--baseball, orange blossoms....stories about what will happen to Republicans when Hispanics start voting. It's a wonderful cycle.
The Republic's Daniel Gonzalez is right on cue with this year's Sleeping Giant story.
The number of eligible Latino voters in Arizona is growing rapidly, and they already have the potential to influence elections, including upcoming congressional races in November, according to a report released Tuesday.
But their power at the ballot box has lagged behind their numbers because many eligible Latino voters haven’t registered to vote or stay home on Election Day, says the report by Latino Decisions, a Seattle-based polling and research company.
Of course, the same could be said of any community. After all, every group could use a boost in voter registration and turnout--which would, of course, make them more influential.
Every group except the Mormons. After all, they already vote.
Funny, I don't see an annual story about how the LDS Community is going to have an overwhelming influence in a generation or two. Now that would be an interesting story because it, you know, would actually be true.
Nope, no one writes a story about the LDS Community having a lot of kids, voting in extremely high percentages and mounting a world-wide recruiting campaign. I have yet to see the story about the Democratic party going the way of the Whigs if they can't figure out a way to reach out to Mormons.
But each year we get the "end of the Republicans...demographics is destiny...we are registering everyone and taking them to the polls story."
Here's a nice quote: "Today we march, tomorrow we vote," said Guzman.
Democrats across the nation are angry that Kyrsten Sinema is contemplating switching from her swing District in Central Phoenix to the safe Democratic seat that Ed Pastor is leaving. They are right to be outraged--after all, Sinema has positioned herself as a centrist who is the only one who can maintain the Democratic hold on District 7. They are also outraged because District 9 is considered an Hispanic seat. Finally, there are a whole crop of Democratic Candidates who have been angling for this seat for years and all of them would see their careers hit a dead end if Sinema decides to occupy that seat for the next 20 years.
So why is she even considering it? Why is she silent in the wake of this outrage? I think there can be only one answer. I think her internal polling is telling her that she can't be re-elected in District 9 and that her choice is to either jump to District 7 or get kicked out of Congress in November.
Look for things to cascade from here. Sinema is showing enough weakness that she's going to draw stronger Republicans into the race. Soon you will see someone with the credibility of an Adam Driggs, Ben Quayle or Betsey Bayless announce that they are considering challenging her.
New York Times Columnist Ross Douthat has an interesting perspective on SB 1062.
In the past, this constant-pressure scenario has seemed the less-likely one, since Americans are better at agreeing to disagree than the culture war would suggest. But it feels a little bit more likely after last week’s “debate” in Arizona, over a bill that was designed to clarify whether existing religious freedom protections can be invoked by defendants like the florist or the photographer.
Word on the street is that Kyrsten Sinema is going to jump to the Pastor seat. This would make a lot of sense. She's in a really tough swing district and is likely to be vulnerable in wave years--and 2014 is shaping up to be wave year.
I have one request. Please wait until Gallardo resigns from the State Senate before announcing.
Governor Brewer has just signed HB 2196 which repeals last year's HB 2305.
A Republican strategist suggested that I write about the Democrat’s ability to refer HB 2305 to the ballot. After all, the Dems found a winning formula in running Libertarians in key races and sending union representatives to unsuspecting voter’s homes in order to collect thousands of ballots. The Republicans made these activities harder and the Democrats managed to collect enough signatures to refer the issue to the ballot. My friend said that I should compare that to the Republican activists who tried to stop Governor Brewer’s AHCCCS expansion by referring it to the ballot. That effort went nowhere. So the Democrat’s money and organization trumps Republican activist passion. Fair enough...except the Dems made and epic blunder. Instead of referring HB 2305 to the ballot, they should have written their own language to repeal the laws that HB 2305 enacted...and then run those changes as an initiative.
The initiative would have required more signatures, but it would have taken about the same overall effort and there is no way that the Legislature could have repealed it. Now the Dems managed to put the issue on the ballot and the Republicans simply took it off. Superior logistics is great, but if you botch the initial strategy, you end up with nothing. Which is exactly what the Dems will get this cycle.
Post script. I wanted to call this post "The Streets of Loredo" but that seemed like piling on.
Now that SB 1062 has been vetoed, folks are asking why we have a legislature that is so conservative. Actually, they are using more disparaging words than that, but I'll stick with conservative.
I've said for years that the current make up of the Legislature--whether you think it's good or bad--is a direct result of the Citizens Clean Election initiative. When well-intentioned by naive people tried to get the money out of politics, they failed to realize that raising money is a process that vets candidates.
Here's a post I wrote in 2009 and in that post, I link to another post that I wrote in 2006.
Part of the super-weirdness of Arizona politics appears to be the result of the state’s 1998 public financing law, which provided tons of matching funds to unwealthy-but-energetic candidates from the social right at the expense of the pragmatic upper class. The Supreme Court took the teeth out of the law in 2011, but, by then, the traditional Republican elite had lost its place at the head of the political table.
Here's an interesting story...George Soros's media arm "Pro Publica" wrote a 7,000 word hit piece on the Koch brothers who also just happen to be Soros's chief political rivals. The piece had a local angle because it focused on the activities of Arizona political consultant Sean Noble. The Arizona Republic then printed the entire piece word for word....just like they teach you in J school.
Here are the ways that the Republic had humiliated itself in the debacle: First, this is yet another example of a local story with national implications that the Republic has simply missed. If the story is important then the Republic should have been the one to break it, if it's not important, then why print all 7000 words in a breathless lede on A1?
Second, does the Republic really believe that Pro Publica is some sort of neutral source? Do they think that they can just reprint it like they would a story from the Associated Press? Soros is a billionaire who spends millions each year on issue advocacy and Pro Publica is one of those outlets. The story is exactly as neutral as an op ed piece from the Goldwater Institute or Center for Arizona Policy.
Third, do they not see the irony that this is dark money versus dark money? It would be bad enough if Pro Publica had written a story about, say, the Navajo Generating Station or SB 1070, but the story is from one of the princes of dark money and it's about other princes of dark money.
Finally, they don't seem to recognize that the article has no final point....what Sean Noble and the Koch brothers did was legal. Just like what Soros does is legal. This is what I call a "Mr. Smith Showers Nude" story. It goes on and on about houses and cars, contributions and payments and by the end you realize that....a political consultant got a big contract and eventually bought stuff. Just like everyone else who gets a big contract. Unfortunately, the "Mr. Smith Showers Nude" stories are so long and breathless and just seem so important that very few readers stop and say...."wait a second....everyone showers nude."
If the Republic is going to be a real newspaper then it needs to start finding its own stories and not reprinting 7000 word breathless pieces that it finds on the net.
It's interesting to see the kerfuffle over SB 1062. Three of the Senators who voted for it are now urging Governor Brewer to veto it and their reasoning is that the bill doesn't really do anything, but people find it so offensive that they regret voting for it.
Sen. Bob Worsley of Mesa, a co-sponsor of the bill, signed the letter along with Sen. Steve Pierce of Prescott and Senate Majority Whip Adam Driggs of Phoenix. Worsley said the bill would not change state law in any material way, yet would harm the state’s business climate and reputation.
They are right of course. The bill doesn't really do anything. Well, it does a little bit, but not much. The bill provides a great example of how fast misinformation travels and how badly the mainstream media differentiates between actual analysis and hyperbole.
As you know, the proposed bills have been widely criticized as authorizing discriminatory acts. These criticisms are largely (but not entirely) unfounded.
The most alarming criticism of the pending bills alleges that, if adopted, the bills would permit individuals with certain religious beliefs to discriminate on the basis of race, religion, or sex. Such criticisms are inaccurate. Federal law clearly prohibits race-, religion-, or sex-based discrimination by the government or private parties in employment and in places of public accommodation.4 Even if the pending bills are adopted, federal anti-discrimination laws will “trump” Arizona laws and continue to prohibit such discrimination.
There is one significant caveat, however: The proposed bills likely would, in narrow circumstances, give private parties greater latitude in discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation. Federal law does not currently prohibit discrimination by private parties on the basis of sexual orientation, so state statutes can narrow the rights of private parties to discriminate in this area. Although statewide law in Arizona does not currently prohibit discrimination by private parties on the basis of sexual orientation, certain local governments have such laws in place. As discussed above, current Arizona law already gives religious institutions the right to object to such laws if enforced by the government—but the pending bills would allow individuals and non-religious institutions to object to the enforcement of such laws, and would allow religious objections even if a law is being enforced by a private party.