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paul teske

Fascinating and hopeful thoughts about Arizona. The joke here in Colorado is that most of the Californians that moved here came from Orange County, and unfortunately, it is not entirely untrue. Colorado is almost one-third Republican, one-third Democrat, one-third Independent, in registrations, with an advantage on the Republication share. So, independents are absolutely key here. With Democratic AG Salazar the front-runner for Campbell's Senate seat, it is possible, though still unlikely, the state could go for Kerry. Lots of retired military here too, and if Bush can't attract them, that could help.

Nell Lancaster

a rich civic culture in which organizations like can play a meaningful role with candidates

Organizations like _____?

I'm bummed to learn of the initiative aimed at rolling back Clean Elections. Arizonans can actually amend the state constitution with just a ballot initiative?


The ruling party in Arizona's Legislature is a solid block of extremely conservative, mostly East Valley, Mormons.
Jake Flake in the House not only shelved every bill by submitted by two moderate Republicans who dared cross him by voting for more Child Protective Services funding (an agency truly in peril, as exhibited by a series of high-profile horrors and child deaths), he kicked them out of committee leadership positions.

Paul C

If Napolitano is indeed that much of a star, why isn't she mentioned more as a possible Vice Presidential nominee? A former prosecutor, clean elections, a westerner and a woman. What are the negatives here?

Hypocrisy Fumigator

Napolitano negatives as VP? She has very little calendar experience as a Governor. She's too new. Your question would be a great one after 2 terms. But for the moment, it's suggestive of a kind of tokenism.


One way to understand why Bush is president is by looking at alternatives . A few months ago I proposed that Bush might have gotten many votes because he was more likely than Gore to use government power to protect the wealth gained during the Clinton years . But we can go further. What would have happened if Bush had not been elected ? The issue is larger than Gore . We had an opportunity in 2000 to face a new millennium and cope with the issues left over from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries . These had to do with the damage done by colonialism to people, cultures, and environment . There was the issue of justice in the United States and the ridiculousness of our having 2.3 million people in jail . It had to do with justice and the economy where the increasing skew of resources towards the rich was making life difficult for a very large number of people . But taking on these issues would have threatened the kind of society that many people had adapted to , the society of individual loneliness and a stress on economics . So Bush can be seen as being the way the country chose not to face those issues, with all their ambiguity and unknowns . It was the choice of safe .

That Gore had written a book on the environment and was super smart made him actually suspect . Likey to use it for something unpredictable. That he abandoned any loyalty to Clinton reinforced the idea that he was not bound by emotional commitments .

So looking at what people avoided by voting for Bush may help explain his election. I think we see some of the same logic working against Kerry but Kerry seems to be playing this fairly well as a determinedly middle of the road candidate who can defend what we have better than Bush. it was actually Bush's radical weirdness through which he turned out not to be the candidate people thought they had elected .


a small note for the last commenter - Bush wasn't elected, he lost both the popular and electoral vote. I know it's annoying to keep bringing up, but it's important to remember that most Americans didn't vote for him last time.

Sam Coppersmith

One minor factual quibble with an otherwise excellent post. Until 1952, Arizona was a reliably Democratic state, and usually gave its electoral votes to the Democratic nominee. In 1952, however, not only did Eisenhower carry the state, but Barry Goldwater--then a not-all-that-well-known Phoenix city councilmember--defeated Sen. Ernest McFarland, who was the Senate Majority Leader. (So much for deference to seniority by a Sunbelt state voters.)

Because Goldwater carried Arizona in 1964, the state had a long unbroken streak of GOP electoral votes. Most states had their streak broken either in the 1964 LBJ landslide or in 1992 with the Clinton victories in key southern states, but Arizona was left with a streak running back to Truman-Barkley in 1948. We (I get to use "we" here because I was Chair of the State Democratic Party that year) finally broke the streak in 1996 when Clinton-Gore carried the state against Dole-Kemp.

While the GOP did carry Arizona in 1992 and 2000, keep in mind that in those years the Democrats didn't contest the state (thereby saving the GOP from putting resources here as well), and the Republicans won by single digits--about 3 points in 1992 with Perot on the ballot, and about 6 points in 2000.

One final note; Gov. Napolitano is not mentioned that often as a potential vice president because she would have to step down as governor to run, and her automatic successor would be Secretary of State Jan Brewer, a Republican.

Travis Jefferson

Sam (above) makes an excellent point about how Brewer moves to the Governor's office if Napolitano is tapped to be Kerry's VP. From what I hear from other Democrats in Arizona, they don't want to lose Napolitano as governor. She's much smarter than the wingnuts in the legislature, and there's really nobody primed to step into her shoes, should she decide to take a position in the Kerry administration.

Lezlie Cox

interesting assessments... however, you are incorrect re: AZ presidential voting record... we have voted for the Democratic candidate TWICE in my lifetime... in 1948 for Harry Truman and in 1996 for Bill Clinton... maybe more. AZ, in it's relatively short history, has gone back and forth between Dem and Rep depending upon who was here at the moment!


Another strike against the great governor from Arizona as a VP possible is that she isn't married. It's obnoxous, but a good many Americans would be suspicous of this fact (and we all know from McCain's illegitimate black child how effective Buch/Cheney are at whisper campaigns when the chips are down).



Dawn Teo

I live in Arizona, and I can tell you without a doubt that Napolitano is more hated than the governor that we sent to prison. There is even an effort underway to recall her, and most of the people that I know who are working on it are Democrats. People here can't stand Napolitano.

She is a horrible lady who has been caught in so many lies and mistruths that she makes Clinton look like a straight talker when he was debating the meaning of the word "is".

But don't think for a minute that it means good things for the Republicans. There is a revolution going on in the Republican Party in Arizona. We are also fed up with the likes of Jeff and Jake Flake, Kolbe, and McCain. McCain is nothing but a corporate profiteer, and anyone who has watched him closely knows that. Flake and Kolbe are just part of the cheap labor lobby that is killing America's middle class and opening up our borders to all sorts of craziness.

Things are in dire straights in Arizona. Ranches are being condemned in border counties because so many thousands of illegal aliens are crossing over these days that they are infecting the farms with diseases long eradicated in developed nations. A friend of mine can no longer farm her ranch because it is infected with chlorea and leporsey. The ranchers are so fed up that they are taking up arms. One rancher had his home burned to the ground by drug runners who he had run off of his land with a shotgun earlier in the day. He is lucky to be alive.

We're having shootouts on the freeways here between drug runners. They've been busting up houses where they are holding illegal aliens while they blackmail their families for more money. One house had 200 illegal aliens in it.

People in Arizona are fed up with the liberals coming here from California. We're fed up with the illegal immigrants displacing in the workforce those of us whose families immigrated legally. We're fed up with our emergency rooms closing down.

But most of all, we're fed up with people like Napolitano who veto bills that simply require people to show an ID when they register to vote and when they go to the voting booth.

Ray OBrian

normally I would consider voting for somebody like Janet Napolitano but she's ("FAMILY UNFRIENDLY") very family unfriendly, here see what I mean...


a CPS Protest / Information Website...

now if she could just get over that annoying habit of selling children...

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