Thursday, May 01, 2008

Gordon gets boost from nativists

...but that's not really their goal... :))

In yesterday's post on Harry Mitchell's Post-9/11 G.I. Bill, I commented on how Bob Lord, John Shadegg's opponent for the CD3 seat, is probably very grateful for Shadegg's disrespect for our nation's (and his district's) veterans.

Now, we have another situation where an elected official and likely future candidate for higher office is probably grateful for the actions of his opponents.

It seems that some anti-immigrant zealots are trying to mount a petition drive to recall Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon.

They don't like the fact that he sees Mexican immigrants, not as targets for bigotry, hatred, and worse, but as human beings.

Actually, "don't like" is putting it mildly.

I'm not going to totally disregard their chances for success - not only am I unfamiliar with the dynamics of Phoenix politics, my guess is that the organizers of the recall effort will receive plenty of support from Joe Arpaio and Andrew Thomas, respectively the Maricopa County Sheriff and Attorney.

Why would they do that? Why else - payback. :))

Anyway, back to the point - while it is possible that this recall effort has a chance at success, consider these two facts:

1. The petition gatherers need 23,751 valid signatures to force the recall election.

2. In the September, 2007 elections, Gordon's opponent received 21,868 votes.

The most likely outcome of this recall effort, and the one that Gordon will probably be grateful for, is that this campaign by the anti-immigrant zealots will further move Gordon into the good graces of grassroots Democrats across the state.

While his organization in Phoenix is formidable (see last year's election results), if Gordon aspires to higher office, he'll need a wider base of support than what he has in Phoenix.

If you don't believe that, remember - Janet Napolitano won the Governor's race in 2002 *without* winning Maricopa County. (AZ Secretary of State's results page here)

Being strong in Maricopa County is good - it's the most populous county in the state; being strong *only* in Maricopa County - not so good.

Ask Matt Salmon, Governor Napolitano's opponent in 2002.

Assuming that this recall campaign doesn't have real legs, and right now it looks like nothing more than a red-faced, screaming, foot-stamping temper tantrum thrown by overgrown children, the campaign only helps Gordon in the long run.

Attorney General Gordon?

Governor Gordon??

Congressman (or even U.S. Senator) Gordon???

What'll the nativists think of their recall effort when one of those eventualities comes to pass?


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