Best Politician - 2010
We never thought we'd write this. And surely, you never thought you'd read it. (Not in this newspaper, anyway.) But our accidental governor, derided for her supposed lack of intellect and stuck with a bleak fiscal situation, has proved herself to be an enormously savvy politician. We don't agree with many things that she's done. We truly wish she had never signed the anti-Mexican Senate Bill 1070. But we have nothing but admiration for the way she forced the Legislature into letting the voters decide whether they wanted a tax increase — and, then, despite getting little to no help from cowardly Dems like Terry Goddard, actually won at the polls. Thanks to that, along with the odious 1070, she boxed all her Republican rivals into the narrowest of corners and made the Democrats here look useless, which (sadly) they pretty much are. We would never name her Best Leader, or Best Civil Rights Champion, and certainly not Best Public Speaker, after the Pause Heard 'Round the World. But Best Politician? You betcha.