Phil Gordon, mayor of Phoenix, has been on the receiving end of harsh criticism from grassroots Democrats, and much of that criticism is deserved (endorsing Jim Weiers and Andrew Thomas?!? That was not only a betrayal of Democrats, that was a betrayal of all residents of Phoenix).
However, on Friday he gave a speech at the annual Cesar Chavez Luncheon that deserves a little respect from everyone, not just Democrats. In his forceful speech, he called out Sheriff Joe Arpaio on his bigotry against Mexicans and people of Mexican descent and on his disregard of his duties - quietly ignoring arrest warrants for violent criminals in favor of standing in front of TV cameras and witch-hunting brown people with broken taillights.
It was easily the best speech of Gordon's career; while he isn't an electric speaker by any means, Gordon's delivery was exactly what is needed in today's nativist environment - it was clear, eloquent, and timely.
More importantly, the speech was a much-needed and honest discussion of the real price of Arpaio's self-serving pandering to the nativist crowd.
Gordon may have earned the ire of Democrats and others in the past, and I fully expect him to do the same in the future. Right now though, he has earned a little respect.
The video of the speech is here; the text of the speech is here.