Thursday, July 31, 2014

The surprise #1 candidate in Republican primaries this year? Barack Obama, of course.

Arizona's Republicans are offering some very "enlightening" primaries this year. 

They are educating people on exactly what they have to offer to Arizona.

Ever more negativity.

They are not running "for" Arizona or their intended district's constituents.

Nope, they are running "against" Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and even Nancy Pelosi. 

Mostly Obama, though.

The phenomenon isn't entirely unexpected in statewide races, because whether the races are high profile (i.e. - governor) or low profile (i.e. - Corporation Commission), most voters never really get to know the candidates.  Even the voters who try to become more informed about the candidates are still relatively "low information" voters.

Where it is surprising to see the attacks is against candidates who people in the relevant district *know*.

One example, from Laurie Roberts of the Arizona Republic -
It's no secret that dark-money forces across the state are using Barack Obama to scare off Republican voters from candidates they oppose.


...[H]ands down, the scariest hide-the-children-it's-an-Obama-lover-in-GOP-clothing mailer is making the rounds in Scottsdale.

The Arizona Free Enterprise Club is attacking Republican Bob Littlefield, who is running for the House, along with Effie Carlson, Rep. Michelle Ugenti, Jay Lawrence.

"When he wanted Obamacare passed, he called upon his liberal allies in Congress," the ad says, next to the most sinister mug of Obama I've seen this campaign season. "And when he needs Obamacare funded in Arizona, he will call on liberal Bob Littlefield."

A picture of the mailer, also courtesy Roberts -

Bob Littlefield is a long-time member of the Scottsdale City Council and is very familiar to the people of Scottsdale.  This year, he is running for a seat in the state legislature in LD23, which is most of Scottsdale and all of Fountain Hills.

There is a four-way primary for two nominations and as there are no Democratic or Independent candidates, the two Republican nominees will become LD23's representatives in the legislature.

That means that the gloves are off in the primary.  There's no fear of nicking up a potential nominee so badly that he is too damaged to win the general election.

Since Littlefield seems to be leading, and certainly has the highest name recognition, the long knives are pointed straight at him.

The problem with their line of attack?

Bob Littlefield is as much a liberal as I am a Yankees fan (Hinting:  I grew up in MA.) (Saying it outright: Most assuredly *not* a Yankees fan).

What he is, however, is not "bay at the moon" crazy.  He genuinely seems to care about Scottsdale, and has supported, and likely will continue to support, proposals that will benefit his constituents, regardless of ideological orthodoxy.

He's also known for having a low tolerance for BS in general and "go along to get along" types.

All of which makes him, if not politically "likeable", at least worthy of some old-fashioned "respect".

You know, the kind that existed back when people were allowed to disagree with each other without being disagreeable.

Note: none of this is meant to constitute an endorsement.  I may live in Scottsdale, but this isn't my race.  I don't live in the LD23 part of Scottsdale; I live in one of the few precincts that is actually in LD24.

Which means that I can say proudly and loudly that my legislators are Sen. Katie Hobbs, Rep. Lela Alston, and Rep. Chad Campbell.

Not scuffing my toe, hanging my head, and mumbling "Sen. Michele Reagan, Rep. John Kavanagh, and Rep. Michelle Ugenti".


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