SCOTTSDALE: Former Councilwoman Susan Bitter Smith said she likely will run in next year's Republican primary in the 5th Congressional District. The seat is help by Democrat Harry Mitchell.Bitter-Smith, in addition to being a former member of the Scottsdale City Council, she is also a former candidate for Congress (2000), current chair of the Arizona Competitive Telecommunications Coalition (at least according to an AZ Rep article; the Coalition's website is unavailable), current President of the Central Arizona Water Conservation District (aka - Central Arizona Project), and long-time Executive Director of the Arizona Cable Telecommunications Association.
In addition to all of her corporate ties listed above, within the last year she has been working to raise her "community group" profile with her involvement in 'Citizen Advocates for Southern Scottsdale' (CASS).
I put "community group" in quotes because CASS seems less a genuine grassroots group and more an astroturf operation run by the Scottsdale Chamber of Commerce and Virginia Korte.
Her lobbying activities have led her to espouse some politically touchy views. For instance, as chair of the Arizona Competitive Telecommunications Coalition she opposes the recent City of Phoenix ban on sending text messages while driving.
"Corporate profits over the safety of the general public" is not a campaign slogan that will fly too far at a time when the country, left, center, and right, is in an uproar over George Bush's veto of SCHIP to protect insurance industry profits.
It's late, and I have to work in the morning, so I don't have time to do a campaign contribution search for her and the various groups that she's been affiliated with tonight, though I will do one later in the week.
Her interest in Harry Mitchell's seat in CD5 has long been rumored, and she is the fifth candidate to express a strong interest (Mark Anderson, Jim Ogsbury, Laura Knaperek, and David Schweikert). While the field is getting crowded, and may see still other entries, I don't expect to see more than three or so names on next fall's Republican ballot.
At least a couple of the candidates will find fundraising in that crowded field to be an overly daunting task. In addition, some will find the task of raising their name recognition among primary voters to be an insurmountable hurdle.
I won't start speculating on who is going to fall by the wayside even before the primary vote until fundraising figures start rolling in.