The battle between Democrat Kyrsten Sinema and Republican Vernon Parker over Arizona’s new 9th Congressional District will be close.
That’s about where most predictions begin and end.
But while the outcome remains a toss-up, recently released primary election data can offer clues to the tactics that each campaign may employ to try to win the race.
Like a summer monsoon that barely whispers a warning before unleashing a downpour, the fight over the solidly Democratic, though culturally diverse, Legislative District 30 has erupted in recent weeks.
Fierce back-and-forth attacks between Democratic Sen. Robert Meza and his challenger, longtime Hispanic-community activist Raquel Téran, both Phoenix residents, have become a weekly occurrence and range from petty to severe.
Meza claims Téran has been illegally coordinating with unions, the Democratic Party and outside political groups, and even says one of her volunteers raised Meza’s sexuality while canvassing, which Meza said is completely inappropriate. Meza is openly gay.
Meanwhile Téran says Meza has harassed her volunteers. One Democratic activist, who doesn’t live in LD30 and who said she is not connected to Téran but prefers her in the race, has requested a probe into whether Meza has been illegally pocketing campaign cash over … Read More »
While the first round of campaign finance reports paints a limited picture of the closely watched primary race between former Sen. Russell Pearce and his Republican challenger, one thing is clear: Newcomer Bob Worsley is getting the hometown support, while the former Senate president is left wanting.
An inspection of contributions made to each from within the Southeast Valley district shows Worsley besting Pearce by a margin of 25-to-one. When all contributions are counted, Worsley holds a six-to-one margin.
Worsley has received $16,890 in individual and political committee contributions since announcing his candidacy in March of this year. Of the $16,655 that can be traced to the contributors’ address, $7,495, or about 45 percent, comes from inside LD25, while $9,160, or about 55 percent, comes from outside LD25, mostly from Gilbert, Phoenix and Scottsdale.
Meanwhile, Pearce received $2,585 in contributions between February and … Read More »
The race to fill the open congressional seat in Arizona’s sprawling 1st Congressional District has become an expensive one, with nearly all of the money coming from elsewhere.
Democratic former Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick has raised more than $1.3 million since launching her campaign to regain the seat she lost in 2010.
And Republican Jonathan Paton has collected $543,000.
But a closer inspection of their campaign finance reports reveals that only a small slice of their swollen war chests has come from within the district those candidates hope to represent.
Of the campaigns’ itemized contributions, which track those greater than $200, only 1 percent of Paton’s contributions — and only 10 percent of Kirkpatrick’s — comes from inside the expansive rural district.
The low median income in CD1, particularly among the Native American communities that comprise a quarter of the district’s population — and the fact … Read More »
Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and Mesa Mayor Scott Smith are the Arizona Capitol Times’ 2012 Best of the Capitol Best Elected Officials, in the Republican and Democratic categories. Watch the opening sequence for their new hit sitcom “Scott & Greg.”
Pete Hanlon likes to save a few bucks when he can. So when the 44-year-old Phoenix resident walks down the dairy aisle, he keeps an eye out for the yellow tags advertising a discount, in return for scanning his plastic grocery discount card.
On one recent trip, he saved $10 on a $90 purchase.
And while Hanlon said he figured the store was keeping track of what he buys, he didn’t realize that — for a hefty price — that sort of detailed consumer data is being leveraged by political campaigns trying to decide whether Hanlon is someone they should target as a persuadable voter or even to hit up for a contribution.
“I remember as a kid hearing that when we grew up we would have bar-codes on our arms that would be scanned before we could buy anything,” Hanlon said. “It … Read More »
At just about every meeting of the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission, at least one of several attorneys representing a group called FAIR Trust sits among the audience.
They take notes, make public recommendations to the commission and occasionally talk privately with commissioners.
FAIR Trust’s attorneys say they want to help the commission adhere to the legal requirements that govern the high-stakes, once-in-a-decade political remapping process, and the group’s name suggests it is interested in fairness.
But what FAIR Trust’s attorneys refuse to say is that they’re actually representing a group of incumbent Republicans from Arizona’s congressional delegation and the state Legislature.
The legal arguments FAIR Trust makes aren’t presented to the redistricting commission as serving the interests of those politicians, but the recommendations they’ve made would create safe districts for the four Republican members of Congress who will seek re-election in 2012: U.S. Reps. … Read More »
Since the Arizona Cattle Growers’ Association began a major border security effort during the 2010 legislative session, the Phoenix-based organization has logged thousands of travel miles, met with hundreds of officials, and even seen the benefit of an upswing in the organization’s membership.
Patrick Bray, executive vice president for the Cattle Growers’ Association, says it has been fulfilling work, and that being recognized as this year’s winner for Best Grassroots Effort is icing on the cake.
“It’s truly been a tremendous effort, indeed,” Bray says, reflecting on the work accomplished since the Restore Our Border (R.O.B.) plan was drafted before the 2010 legislative session.
Video shot, edited and produced by Evan Wyloge
– From the Arizona Capitol Times’ 2011 Best of the Capitol: Best Grassroots Effort
Placing the “I” word in front of Redistricting Commission doesn’t mean it’s really independent.
And the five commissioners — Democrats Linda McNulty and José Herrera, Republicans Richard Stertz and Scott Freeman and independent chairwoman Colleen Mathis — who soon will begin redrawing the state’s legislative and congressional district boundaries, are about to find out that politics, like desert sand in the summer winds, infiltrates everything, no matter what adjective modifies their group.
Politics, of course, is mobilization and persuasion, the handshakes, backslaps and wagging fingers in the opponent’s face. But the seeds of politics are in the unlikeliest of places: on a piece of paper. For it is the mission of the IRC, written in the Arizona Constitution, to satisfy six standards of electoral theory, and two of them are on a collision course: “communities of interest” and “competitive districts.”
Already, Hispanic activists … Read More »
It was a Saturday gathering that started with a sizzling race for chairmanship of the Arizona Republican Party, climaxed with a bare majority for the winner, then ended with the smiles and sounds of unity.
But now comes the hard part: the charting of the future of a party apparatus that boasts of electoral victories, but falls short in fundraising.
And with Tom Morrissey — late entrant in the race for the chairmanship, former U.S. marshal, Tea Party activist — now in charge of the state party, questions abound as to whether Republicans can overcome the growing can’t-be-too-far-right mood that mocks moderates and scares off big-money contributors.
A Tea Party chairman might encourage the continuation of diverting campaign money around the party structure and cause moderate Republicans to be boxed out of the party campaign machine in favor of more rigid Tea Party … Read More »