Arizona Democrats' Defeat Dissected and Why the Party Needs to Bust Out a Guillotine or Two

NEAR BEER
The only thing lame duck Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard could do to redeem himself from his painful-to-watch, failed run at becoming this state's CEO is call a news conference announcing the indictments of Sheriff Joe Arpaio and the entire MCSO command staff.

Barring the unlikely occurrence of Goddard indicting Maricopa County's (for the moment) Teflon Don, Goddard should take a cue from Dave Chappelle's career arc and fall off the face of the planet once his term's done in January.

Sure, Goddard was doomed. But it wasn't Arizona Senate Bill 1070 that doomed him, or Governor Jan Brewer's signing of that vicious breathing-while-brown statute. No, Goddard, and his fellow Democrats, doomed themselves. They ceded the entire immigration debate — the only one that mattered, sadly — to the Republicans, without ever attempting to do otherwise.

All's forgiven, Terry, if you'll just get Arpaio indicted before you exit office.
Stephen Lemons
All's forgiven, Terry, if you'll just get Arpaio indicted before you exit office.
PLEA President Mark Spencer: Will he call Bill Montgomery’s shots on the Chrisman case?
Stephen Lemons
PLEA President Mark Spencer: Will he call Bill Montgomery’s shots on the Chrisman case?

In fact, Democratic candidates and their flacks were encouraged to avoid the dreaded term "SB 1070" altogether, as if it invoked the Devil himself.

They were advised by internal pollsters, focus group gurus, and party hacks to talk "tough" on the border or even, as in the case of quisling Dem Jon Hulburd, embrace it and ignore the stench of nativism sticking to them.

Hulburd, who went as far to the right as possible in conservative Congressional District 3, was still bested by 11 points by the much-maligned Ben Quayle. In CD5, Democratic Representative Harry Mitchell, who also cozied up to nativism and 1070, was undone by his foil, David Schweikert.

What better evidence do you need that between heroin cut with powdered Pedialyte and the real deal, the customer will always opt for the latter?

Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick in CD1? She, too, copped a Republican-lite line on immigration and was whupped by Paul Gosar, a wingnut ivory-puller. Only Representative Gabby Giffords in CD8 mimicked a tusker and pulled it off. Nevertheless, insane-in-the-membrane Tea Partier Jesse Kelly nearly engineered an upset.

Democratic rationalizers will throw CD7's Congressman Raul Grijalva at me, in riposte. Yeah, his Republican nobody-foe Ruth McClung came too close for comfort, but Grijalva still topped her by five points. By the end, he had to apologize for backing the boycott over 1070, but he didn't back off his opposition to the law itself.

There are other issues here in Sand Land, but immigration and the poisonous combo of nativism and xenophobia are the dominant factors, unavoidable in our prickly needle patch.

Dems were clueless as to how to respond to 1070, because for so long they have taught themselves to betray their beliefs and hide beneath a thick duvet of false moderation.

Goddard, for instance, waffled from jump, first finding 1070 "troubling," then whining because mean ol' Jan Brewer wouldn't let him defend it in court. He even blasted the federal government for suing over 1070, though he knew (secretly) it was the right thing for the U.S. Department of Justice to do.

Supporters defend Goddard, claiming he had no choice, that as AG he was duty-bound to protect 1070 like a mama hen guarding her newly hatched chicks.

If that was his only excuse, Goddard should have resigned his office, denounced 1070 and the governor for signing it, and exposed the law as an unconstitutional boondoggle benefiting the Snell & Wilmer lawyers hired to defend it, the private prison industry, and merchants of hate, such as state Senate President-elect Russell Pearce.

I won't argue against 1070's popularity in Arizona, but the GOP's nativist battering ram wasn't constructed in a fortnight.

Some — like yours truly — were ringing the tocsin at the beginning of 2010, as Pearce set 1070 in motion. Too many Dems, however, were turning tail, concocting alibis, avoiding public statements.

So when Goddard gave his concession at the Wyndham Phoenix on Election Night, I was startled to hear him utter the following:

"This state that we love is not, has never been, and must not become a place of hatred and racial unrest. We must resoundingly reject Russell Pearce and those that would make our great state a poster child for racial discord in this nation. We cannot allow that to happen to Arizona."

It was raw flesh to the party faithful present, stuff they'd wanted to hear Goddard emphasize during the campaign.

If he had, perhaps he wouldn't have garnered around 70,000 fewer votes than Democratic Attorney General hopeful Felecia Rotellini.

Rotellini, too, adopted a near-beer attitude toward 1070 in the general election, as her rival Tom Horne painted himself as Mr. 1070, Mr. Ethnic Studies Ban, and Mr. Anti-Amnesty.

Her stance didn't get her past Horne, but she fared better than Goddard did against his opponent. Brewer's spread, at last count, was more than 200,000 votes. Whereas Horne crept past Rotellini with around 60,000. (Early ballots and provisionals were still being counted as this column went to press.)

With Horne-Rotellini, voters went for the Canadian Moosehead rather than the O'Doul's. But unlike Goddard, Rotellini brought passion and a thrill for the one-two punch to her game. She upped her name recognition, and earned a rep. Not bad for a first run at elective office.

HEAD ROLL
We've been down this desolate road before, of course. Remember 2008, when a Barack Obama-led Democratic wave swept across the land?

1
 
2
 
3
 
All
 
Next Page »
 
My Voice Nation Help
22 comments
AntiFascist18
AntiFascist18

For Flashcalc,The statement "Arizona Democrat" has become a big joke, considering the opposition of EVERY Democratic state and Congressional official to SB1070.

Your Party NO longer represents the majority of Arizona citizens who are tired of increased crime, of kidnappings, of cartels, and the band-aid responses of the Giffords and Goddards to do anything about it. Or the childish whining of a Sinema.

Heck, you even have one of your very own demanding a boycott of the state he represents so shamefully.

The Arizona Democrats put Obama, Holder, the Lawsuit, the ILLEGAL and the Cartel over the majority of law-abiding, decent Arizona citizens. That is your problem - and even though Giffords and Grijalva squeaked through, they're toast insofar the new Congress is concerned, and toast in two years with aroused voters tired of Democratic lies. You choose Obama, Holder, Calderon and Soros over the rest of us, and you will most assuredly pay.

AntiFascist18
AntiFascist18

It would be nice if the new Attorney General would throw his last two predecessors, plus this clown Lemons, in Jail for treason and sheer stupidity. Throw in Giffords, Grijalva and Sinema too. Oh, do make sure Lemons and Sinema share the same cell.

Chuck481
Chuck481

It is not accurate to state that "Horne crept past Rotellini with around 60,000" votes. He won a landslide victory by a 3.77% margin. Just because Gov. Brewer won an earthquake size victory over Goddard does not diminish the significance of Horne's landslide victory. Compare Horne's 3.77% victory to the landslide victory which Pres. Reagan is credited with winning over his opponents (Carter & Anderson) in the 1980 Presidential race, by 50.7% to 47.6%. If Reagan's 3.1% victory was a landslide, certainly Horne's 3.77% victory was too.

linaimai
linaimai

Dear customers, thank you for your support of our company.Here, there's good news to tell you: The company recentlylaunched a number of new fashion items! ! Fashionableand welcome everyone to come buy. If necessary,welcome to :===== www. ongoin.com ========T-shirts (Polo ,ed hardy,lacoste) $14New era cap $10

Air jordan(1-24)shoes $30

Handbags(Coach,ed hardy,lv,d&g) $35

Jean(True Religion,ed hardy,coogi) $35

Sunglasses(Oakey,coach,gucci,Armaini)$14Dear customers, thank you for your support of our company.Here, there's good news to tell you: The company recentlylaunched a number of new fashion items! ! Fashionableand welcome everyone to come buy. If necessary,welcome to :===== www. ongoin.com ========T-shirts (Polo ,ed hardy,lacoste) $14New era cap $10

Air jordan(1-24)shoes $30

Handbags(Coach,ed hardy,lv,d&g) $35

Jean(True Religion,ed hardy,coogi) $35

Sunglasses(Oakey,coach,gucci,Armaini)$14

Bikini (Ed hardy,polo) $18

Bikini (Ed hardy,polo) $18

linaimai
linaimai

i,Dear Ladies and Gentlemen, ( http://www.ongoin.us/ ) Here are the most

popular, most stylish and avant-garde

shoes,handbags,Tshirts, Tracksuit wect…NIKE ,

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

This is a shopping paradiseWe need your support and trust!

=== http://www.ongoin.us/ ===

Billymadi
Billymadi

Sadly, even if you don't like the Repubs or Dems, there is no other option. The other three 'third parties' have bad policies and no one with any skill and appeal.

http://www.moderntimesmagazine...

Flashcalc
Flashcalc

I am an AZ Dem state committeeman. I was there for Eckerstrom's bar-burner of a speech. Unfortunately, I've seen this before - great words, lots of energy, "let's do this" , yadda-yadda-yadda-nothing. He did not think he'd win that election, just wanted a soapbox, and quit ASAP (I was not surprised). We need more than fiery words, we need to follow up. Unfortunately, we are not unified on message, and actually can be pretty dam wimpy.

Rog51
Rog51

You are obviously poorly informed. The State Democratic Party has never in it's entire history fuctioned better than over the past two years. The staff and the leadership did a phenomenal job. Unfortuately, this was a horrible "nationalized" election which was exacerbated by the SB 1070 mess. No one could have anticipated the effects of SB 1070 which took Jan Brewer from someone who would have lost her own primary to being unbeatable and Terry Goddard from a double digit lead to a double digit loss. Nothing could have changed the trends of this election just like 1972 and 1980. Sometimes, shit happens. Time to move on and ignore the need of some idiots to hold someone "responsible." The voters and the medial share a lot of blame here and we Democrats did everything we could to save the voters from themselves.

Leonardclark385
Leonardclark385

Excellent, excellent, excellent article that shows not all journalists have been bought or killed off by the corporate elite who now run our government and our mainstream press !Leonard Clarkformer endorsed Green party candidate for Arizona Congressional district #311-13-10

linaimai
linaimai

Dear customers, thank you for your support of our company.Here, there's good news to tell you: The company recentlylaunched a number of new fashion items! ! Fashionableand welcome everyone to come buy. If necessary,welcome to :===== www. ongoin.com ========T-shirts (Polo ,ed hardy,lacoste) $14New era cap $10

Air jordan(1-24)shoes $30

Handbags(Coach,ed hardy,lv,d&g) $35

Jean(True Religion,ed hardy,coogi) $35

Sunglasses(Oakey,coach,gucci,Armaini)$14

Bikini (Ed hardy,polo) $18

Guest
Guest

Creating Jobs for PHOENIX - elect Mayor Terry Goddard You've said it before, you can say it again, Mayor Terry Goddard

Captain Obvious
Captain Obvious

"Sure, Goddard was doomed. But it wasn't Arizona Senate Bill 1070 that doomed him, or Governor Jan Brewer's signing of that vicious breathing-while-brown statute."

Yes, indeed, you are right Lemons. He was doomed. Doomed from the beginning. I support Brewer's "breathing-while-brown" statue. Being a brown [or darker] individual, I think it's the best thing to ever happen. In fact, the majority of "brownies" are with me [and disagree with you] that reform is needed and needed NOW. (ref: http://www.hispanicfederation....

"So when Goddard gave his concession at the Wyndham Phoenix on Election Night, I was startled to hear him utter the following: "

I wasn't surprised, instead I felt justified. This is why people didn't vote for him. He, himself, would have brought hate, distrust, etc., to the public. That's the Dem way. (ref: http://www.powerlineblog.com/a...

"Rotellini, too, adopted a near-beer attitude toward 1070 in the general election, as her rival Tom Horne painted himself as Mr. 1070, Mr. Ethnic Studies Ban, and Mr. Anti-Amnesty. "

Thank gawd for Horne, he was the only one for the job (ref: see voting results).

Lemons, can you ever write an article without mentioning Joe? I mean, it's almost at homoerotic levels.

Steve
Steve

hey Captain Obvious, might that last thought on your post actually be projecting?

Guest
Guest

One definition of Insanity is repeating the same thing over and over and expecting different results. This sums up Lemon's writings of the Sheriff in a nutshell. None of his hate towards the Sheriff has resulted in anything different; the Sheriff was here long before Lemons, he'll be here long after Lemons. I think the homoerotic connection may hold the key with Lemons vis-a-vis the Sheriff. This article didn't need to mention the Sheriff. In fact, I'm beginning to wonder if it was an affectation for the purpose of "shouting out" to his gay interest, the Sheriff? That's an obsessive behavior that, in my professional opinion, is tantamount to a clinical diagnosis.

Steve
Steve

Yeah, well, two prominent DINOs that need to go are both Hulburd and Glassman, but not necessarily in that order.

But Stephen, declaring that the Dems need a unifying position on immigration is much easier said than actually finding, defining or figuring out such a position and overcoming the hateful din of the nativists.

What are YOUR ideas?

Frankly, I'm not sure there was a way, this year, for Dems to successfully address that issue.

I can't see Kyrsten Sinema as chair of the AZ Democratic Party, but she provides a strong and necessary voice and I hope she's able to continue speaking up and out.

PresidentJackson
PresidentJackson

here's one idea, on the website of az employers for immigration reform:

http://www.azeir.org/index2.as...

not perfect but a start

republinazis define the debate define their enemies attack and win

the donks need to go and do likewise

Steve
Steve

I agree that's a nice start... but it's going to take much more than just having a sound, rational set of ideas to address immigration. It's going to have to be something that can be heard above the nativist cacophony to begin galvanizing public opinion. And given the nature of hatemongering as political strategy, that's pretty difficult.

Guest
Guest

The Nazi's were a right wing party in Germany, which equate [geo-politically] to the LEFT WING party of the United States; the Democrats. So, trying to be "clever", like Lemons, only shows your ignorance.

If you need a list of prominent Democratic Nazi party members in the US, as well as Democratic members of the KKK, let me know, I'll be happy to "hook you up." It's all public knowledge. Ah, the wonders of "Google" these days, huh?

 
Phoenix Concert Tickets
Loading...