When the Reps purged moderate professional public servants such as State Senators Pete Hershberger and Tom O'Halleran during their primary, replacing them with pure ideologues like Cap'n Al Melvin and Steve Pierce, and replacing the late Jake Flake with Sylvia Allen (a Russell Pearce fave), I thought that AZ's Dems with their pragmatic and centrist candidates were in a position to take a majority in one or both chambers of the lege.
I was wrong. We lost a little ground in both.
...Stuff I was wrong about (and happy that it is so)...
When the Reps nominated Marian McClure, Barry Wong, and Bob Stump for Arizona Corporation Commission, I thought that they had put up three candidates that might have been strong enough to beat back the candidacies of Sandra Kennedy, Paul Newman, and Sam George.
Turns out Kennedy and Newman have won seats, and George is neck-and-neck with Bob Stump for the third seat (currently, George is 1052 votes down, with provisionals and dropped-off mail in ballots still being counted).
...Stuff I was right about (and mostly very happy that it is so)...
Months ago, before either party's presidential primaries had even taken place, I predicted that John McCain at the top of the Rep ticket would lead to good things for national Democrats ("President Barack Obama" anyone? Whoo hoooo!! :)) ) but would hurt AZ Dems due to increased Rep voter turnout (see point one about losing ground in the lege).
So long as Governor Janet Napolitano stays in AZ to stand up to the Arizona chapter of the Flat Earth Society, I'll be satisfied with a Democratic-controlled White House and a Republican-controlled lege.
...So how soon before the "Barkley for Governor" talk begins again?
Kevin Johnson, formerly a star with the Phoenix Suns, rode Tuesday's Democratic wave into the mayor's office in Sacramento, California.
From the LA Times -
A Democrat, he likened himself to Barack Obama, noting that both campaigned on a platform of change. Race was not an overt issue in Sacramento, where African Americans make up about 14% of the population.
"The mayor stared blindly into her rear-view mirror while Johnson was focused on the road ahead," said Doug Elmets, a Sacramento political consultant.
Actually, candidate KJ was more the sort of pro-business Republican-lite candidate that Rahm Emanuel would fall all over himself recruiting if he was still running the DCCC, not as an agent of change like Barack Obama, but it's still good to see KJ doing well.
...The denizens of San Francisco aren't anywhere near as colorful as conservative pundits would have everyone believe...
From U.S. News and World Report -
SAN FRANCISCO—Even here, in this defiantly liberal city, it was simply too much. A local measure that would have renamed a sewage treatment plant after George W. Bush was defeated yesterday, with 69 percent of voters opposing it. Thirty percent of voters supported the initiative.
Was it a case of "too much" or was it just a case of not wanting to create any reminders of the worst president in history?
...The 2010 campaign season has already started, with speculation on possible candidates hitting the internet by Thursday. PolitickerAZ has a list of possible gubernortorial contenders, one that includes the usual Democrats, such as Phil Gordon (Mayor of Phoenix), Terry Goddard (AZ Attorney General) and Jim Pederson (Developer and former chair of the AZ Dems).
One other name that was included was something of a surprise - Johnny Basha.
Even if the Basha family hadn't become a bunch of union-busting Republicans, Johnny Basha could never get through a Democratic primary. He's a fundraiser for and contributor to John McCain.