Don Moon is not an easy man to intimidate. Physically, he is only slightly smaller than a grizzly bear. Within state political circles, Moon, a Phoenix attorney, is considered shrewd and streetwise.
But when a cop tipped him that he was the target of a vendetta by a local Hispanic street gang, Moon says he started to sweat. The homeboys were miffed because Moon was representing one of their number, a member not in good standing, who was the state's star witness in the murder trial of the gang leader. "I had negotiated this arrangement for my client," Moon explains. "The word on the street was that the gang had a contract out on me."
Moon turned to the only man he knew who could reach into the tough barrios of South Phoenix and make his problem go away--Alfredo Gutierrez, champion of the poor, all-American success story, hero of the state's liberal activists.
Less than a mile from the barrios, but light-years away in social and economic terms, executives from the giant Oregon-based utility PacifiCorp made a similar determination last year as they huddled in a Phoenix high-rise planning a takeover bid against Arizona Public Service Company. The PacifiCorp executives knew their campaign needed at least tacit support from the state's business and political mandarins.
So they went looking for the man who could take them straight into the governor's office and every private club in town--Alfredo Gutierrez, the prince of Phoenix influence peddlers.
Ten years separate the exit of the unlucky gang leader from the appearance of PacifiCorp on the local scene, yet both instances illustrate something about their common denominator. Coming into the 1990s, it would be difficult to identify anyone with greater, albeit hidden, influence than Alfredo Gutierrez, fund raiser, strategist and confidant of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry Goddard.
And if, three weeks from now, it's not "Governor Goddard" but "Who?," Alfredo need not fret. He's in good field position with Fife Symington, Goddard's Republican opponent in the governor's race. Gutierrez, one may recall, is the man who helped Symington squeeze the Phoenix City Council for an extra 500,000 square feet of commercial space over what it had intended to allow in Symington's Camelback Esplanade development.
From grassroots hero to Mr. Fixit for the powerful. A lesser man might be ruined by such an irreconcilable conflict, but not Alfredo. As more than one local leader has come to discover, Alfredo has simply made himself too indispensable to hate.
GUTIERREZ WAS DEMOCRATIC minority leader in the state Senate ten years ago when Don Moon, then a criminal-defense attorney, sought his help with the street gang. "These were not just a group of wayward lads," Moon says. "I mean, we are talking farm team for the Mexican Mafia."
Gutierrez paid a visit to the gang's inner-city neighborhood and telephoned back the following day. "Alfredo said, `You do not have a problem anymore,'" Moon recalls. "I have no clue how he was able to swing such clout. The fact is, those guys look up to him." (Gutierrez says he merely urged the youths to use common sense, impressing upon them the fact that murdering an officer of the court would only complicate their lives.)
By the time PacifiCorp approached him, Gutierrez had retired from the Senate to become a private political consultant. Thanks in large part to his help, PacifiCorp almost succeeded in prying APS away from its entrenched management. PacifiCorp unquestionably won the public-relations war, also orchestrated upon Gutierrez's advice, as surveys showed a majority of the public was rooting for the invader instead of APS.
Inside the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC), the state's feisty utility regulators were openly sympathetic with PacifiCorp. The governor's office, rather than voicing the expected concern about takeover of a major local employer, remained silent.
Gutierrez just happens to have ties with key people in both offices dating back at least two decades.
He rallied students at Arizona State University with Renz Jennings, one of the three-member corporation commission, back in the 1960s. Gutierrez also teamed up with fellow Democrat Marcia Weeks, who now chairs the ACC, on numerous issues when both were state legislators in the 1970s.
Gutierrez's ties with the governor's office are even more personal. He was born in the eastern Arizona mining town of Miami, making him nearly next-door neighbors with Globe native Governor Rose Mofford, also a Democrat. Former Mofford aide Art Othon, now working for Terry Goddard (but still housed in Mofford's office), is a personal friend.
"We were advised that he was the best [local contact] we could hire," says Dennis Steinberg, one of the PacifiCorp takeover strategists. "In fact, it was suggested [by PacifiCorp's legal advisers] we should hire him, even if we didn't think we needed his help, if only to keep the other side from doing so."
As a legislator, Gutierrez was an ebullient populist, fond of punctuating his oratory with the wave of a big cigar. He led charge after charge for liberal change--improved social services, education and civil rights. The right-to-life movement regarded him as evil incarnate, a testimony to his unyielding pro-choice stance. But he made few real enemies even among adversaries.
"He was a guy you could sit down and talk to," comments former state Representative Jim Skelly, the leading right-to-life activist during his years in the legislature. "One hears him described as a bomb-thrower back then, but nothing could be further from the truth. By and large, he was committed to good public policy."
Gutierrez's charm and energy were infectious, recalls Renz Jennings. "He's brilliant, funny, quick on his feet and to think," Jennings says. "It's a devastating combination." When Alfredo--it is difficult to think of him in more formal terms--retired from the legislature in 1986, colleagues, bureaucrats and lobbyists pooled their donations and presented him with a new Pontiac Grand Am.
Upon entering the private sector, Gutierrez traded in his baggy suits for a subdued, expensive look. Few begrudged him the desire to make some money. He'd made little enough as a state legislator--he did not own a car at the time he was given the Grand Am.
Considerably more people, however, have a serious beef with the direction of Alfredo's midlife change. Critics compare the causes he championed as a student leader and politician with those he now promotes, and claim the man has forsaken principle as well.
Among his clients are some of the most notorious corporate polluters in the country, including Phelps Dodge Corporation, Browning-Ferris Industries, and ENSCO. He has cut deals to represent so many competing interests that at least one major client, the City of Phoenix, once found itself fighting a bill being pushed by its own lobbyist, Alfredo, on behalf of another client.
"Sure, an ex-legislator should be able to go out as a lobbyist and make money, but what's the point if you're not accomplishing anything positive?" asserts Maricopa County Supervisor Carole Carpenter. Carpenter, also a Democrat, confronted Gutierrez head-on over a landfill his client Browning-Ferris Industries (BFI) wants to build on the banks of the Agua Fria River in El Mirage, part of Carpenter's northwest Valley district.
In 1989 and 1990, Gutierrez twice scuttled Carpenter's efforts to obtain new legislation that would thwart BFI by prohibiting new landfills on riverbanks. How Gutierrez accomplished his task, and at what cost to public policy, reveals much about why he has become so controversial.
Carpenter had important backing for her bill, including the endorsement of the Phoenix City Council, then headed by Democrat Terry Goddard. Gutierrez was under contract to represent the city in the legislature at the time, a position he was given because of his enormous ability to influence votes.
But Gutierrez nevertheless maneuvered to kill Carpenter's bill on behalf of BFI, the second-largest waste-disposal company in the world. He did so by manipulating latent differences within the Democratic party, causing support for the measure to splinter.
Alfredo buried the first bill by persuading Jaime Gutierrez (no relation), a state senator from Tucson, to introduce an amendment requiring the removal of existing landfills, a change which would have cost Phoenix and other cities hundreds of millions of dollars. This ploy caused chaos for the City of Phoenix, which was forced to repudiate its support for the landfill bill to protect its own pocketbook.
Alfredo recast the issue as a matter of protecting jobs in a poor Hispanic community rather than protecting the environment, which attracted Hispanic Democrats to support BFI. "He changed the issue from a fairly clear one of bad public policy, that is to put landfills on riverbanks, to an economic argument for a small, minority-dominated town," Carpenter says. "What was amazing was his ability to influence Democratic votes that otherwise would have been dependably pro-environment."
Gutierrez denies that he manipulated ethnic themes and says, "I find it silly, offensive, that this whole thing is being reduced to the fact I'm Mexican."
City legislative liaison Norris Nordvold downplays the problem Gutierrez created for City Hall, admitting only that the incident led to changes in Alfredo's contract to prevent future conflicts. But insiders say Nordvold was "livid" over Gutierrez's duplicity.
"Norris knew how many balls he needed to get the [bill] passed and that was three, and he knew he wasn't going to get a third one," says a source close to the situation. "So when they took the only two he had, he was understandably upset."
A year later, Gutierrez again scotched Carpenter by engineering an exemption for BFI in the landfill bill she was pushing. BFI had little trouble winning Republican support for its exemption. The company flew in its charismatic CEO William Ruckelshaus to meet with conservative lawmakers.
A tall, square-jawed man of imposing presence, Ruckelshaus is famous for being the first head of the federal Environmental Protection Agency and the man brought back to revitalize the agency after three disastrous years under Reagan appointee Anne Gorsuch Burford.
Upon his arrival in Phoenix, Ruckelshaus was escorted by Gutierrez through the halls of the Arizona State Capitol, dazzling all he met. (Or almost all. Northwest Phoenix Republican Wayne Stump, upon being introduced to Ruckelshaus, regarded him quizzically and said, "Exactly what is it you do, Mr. Ruckelshaus?")
Carpenter says she knew she was defeated. "It was made very clear to me what it would take to get the bill through, and that was a loophole for BFI," she recounts. "Alfredo has personal relationships with people out [at the legislature] that date back years and years, and he nurtures these relationships. What I learned from this experience is that you can't do business out there and succeed just because you're on the side of truth and justice. You have to make friends and work to keep the friendships alive."
Even Alfredo's friends concede he has ventured into an ethical swamp. "He's a victim of his own competence and talent for negotiation," Jennings says. "He wanted to cash in on it, which is understandable. But groups like Common Cause don't have $500 million budgets and those who do typically have an ax to grind.
"The nature of consulting is that the people with the money to hire you generally want you to make poison look like it's not bad stuff," Jennings observes.
Phoenix City Councilmember Linda Nadolski, one of the few elected officials willing to criticize Gutierrez publicly, has voted against retaining Gutierrez as a lobbyist because so many of his other clients are at cross-purposes with city policies. "I feel there's a natural conflict of interest in what he's doing," Nadolski says. "If nothing else, his representation of the city gives him access to a great deal of information that could be valuable to his other clients. Alfredo is definitely tapped into the informal information system at City Hall; he knows everybody."
Even when not at cross-purposes with the city, as in the BFI matter, Gutierrez's clients are apt to be across the bargaining table from one another.
In addition to the Symington Company (which wangled a major increase in density for the Esplanade with Alfredo's help), Gutierrez represented America West Airlines in negotiations for a maintenance facility at Sky Harbor International Airport (the city has promised heavy subsidies). Currently he is representing the Barron Collier family in negotiations with the city to acquire and develop the Phoenix Indian School property.
Phoenix is being represented in the bargaining by former state legislator Burton Barr, whose relationship with Gutierrez is described by their former colleague Jim Skelly as "just like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid."
Nadolski is openly doubtful that this arrangement benefits the people of Phoenix. "It's difficult to be specific in criticizing them because we don't have a firm [development] proposal in front of us," she says. "But from what I see, I'm not so sure the negotiations are going in a direction that's in the best interest of the city."
But Nadolski is the only Phoenix City councilmember to consistently oppose Gutierrez's retention as a legislative lobbyist, and even she acknowledges that he is extraordinarily skillful at getting to the heart of the action.
"None of the others feels any of his conflicts are sufficient to outweigh his value," Nadolski shrugs. "When the legislature goes into caucus and closes its doors to the public, Alfredo is still in there and that's an advantage to us."
Dana Larsen, executive director of Common Cause in Phoenix, says Gutierrez's influence is so strong he need not follow the usual lobbying rules to sway votes. "I see very little of Alfredo at the legislature," says Larsen, a pale, cerebral fellow whose central mission is to hobble influence-peddling in state politics.
"If Alfredo is interested in something, he goes straight to the governor or to the caucus," Larsen says. "He doesn't make appointments to meet with legislators like most of the lobbyists; he operates in entirely different strata."
Democratic press aide Jim West calls Gutierrez "an important and very productive fund raiser" in the Goddard campaign for governor.
"He has no formal role in the campaign, but he is an adviser whose counsel is valued and respected," West says.
West maintains Goddard remains adamantly committed to his pro-environment positions. Goddard, West insists, will fight for his beliefs despite the fact that the opposing position is, with increasing frequency, occupied by the clients of his "valued and respected" adviser, Alfredo Gutierrez.
GUTIERREZ'S CLIMB to the stratospheric centers of power, to the places where corporate takeovers, laws and governorships are decided, is all the more resonant because of where he started.
"Alfredo was always a leader," says Maricopa County Supervisor Ed Pastor, who, like Gutierrez, grew up in Miami. While his older brothers reaped glory for the family through their high school athletic stardom, Alfredo stood out "in a different way," Pastor recalls tactfully.
He was the kind of boy about whom, had he been born in the last century, it might have been said, "He was born to be hanged." Modern educators no longer refer to troublesome children this way, at least not within earshot of parents, and certainly not within hearing of parents as clannishly loyal as those in Arizona's copper mining towns.
But whenever somebody soaped car windows in the school parking lot, or absconded with the sack lunches, says Pastor, "The principal came looking for Alfredo."
"He had this little group of boys, and he was their leader, and they got into all sorts of--how can I put it?--mischief," Pastor chuckles.
Alfredo and his little friends, though a magnet for the suspicion of authorities, did not have what is referred to by rap musicians as "attitude," according to Pastor. "They didn't wear their hair a certain way, or dress a certain way," he insists. "They weren't delinquents or anything like that. Miami didn't have gangs like you think of them today."
Alfredo acknowledges that "mischief" may be too gentle a term. "I was never involved in violent crimes but I had a juvenile [police] record for burglary and things like that," he says. "I was a guest of county facilities on a number of occasions, yeah. I mean, it was a small town, there wasn't much to do."
"I was from a tough family; it was a tough place," Gutierrez says without a trace of a smile. "I survived. What else can I say?"
Nevertheless, Alfredo's ability to influence, say, the barrio is rooted in his growing-up years, longtime acquaintances insist. "That's the key to understanding Alfredo," says Don Moon. "Whatever he is, for better or worse, is in his hometown."
Inside the elegantly tailored clothes he now wears, Gutierrez still has the face of a battered pugilist (a result of severe teenage acne, not boxing). About him lingers the faint aura of a man who can take care of himself in dark alleys.
He possesses an instinct for danger so feral as to be uncanny. When New Times engaged Gutierrez in interviews for a profile, he anticipated and parried embarrassing questions as gracefully as if he himself had supplied the confidential interoffice documents leaked to illustrate his slippery moral ground since becoming a lobbyist. "I don't sense old enemies; I sense new ones," Gutierrez muses.
A town like Miami could thus equip its children to survive, but it could not give them a sense of expanding horizons. After high school, the only two roads led into the mines or into the service. Gutierrez chose the latter and credits the army with lifting his vision, although not precisely as depicted in recruiting posters.
"The unit to which I was eventually assigned was a mental-health unit, so I was surrounded by people with degrees --doctors, psychologists, social workers," Gutierrez says. "No one in my family had ever gotten a college degree, and until then, I had always assumed that only very brilliant people went to college.
"The army taught me that's bullshit," he allows.
Gutierrez returned to Arizona in 1966, his sights no longer trained on home, with its certain promise of quick matrimony, early parenthood and a job in the mines. He did marry his high school sweetheart, Kathy Castro, and start a family, but from that point his destiny diverged radically from that of his buddies.
He enrolled at Arizona State University, studying history and philosophy and working at menial campus jobs to supplement the financing he received under the GI Bill. Summers he spent working in the mines. Gutierrez says he had no idea, at that point, what he would do with his life, but Pastor claims he caught "civil rights fever" in the service.
Whatever the cause, it was not long before Alfredo was, once again, annoying the authorities.
Unlike most Anglo college students, Gutierrez was a father and husband; he was in direct contact with the bread-and-butter issues affecting Phoenix's Hispanic community. "The laundry that serviced ASU was a major employer of Hispanics in South Phoenix and stories of how people were mistreated there were legendary in the barrio," Gutierrez recalls.
The year was 1968, the height of student unrest on campuses across the country. Gutierrez and several other Hispanic students, including Pastor's younger brother Robert, founded the Mexican American Student Association (MASA) to pressure university administrators to require antidiscrimination changes at the laundry.
"We led student walkouts, took over the administration building, that sort of thing," Gutierrez recalls with a touch of nostalgia. "I somehow got the moniker as a neo-Trotskyite."
Following the MASA demonstrations, ASU administrators instituted a disciplinary system aimed at students suspected of fomenting disruption. "I spent so much time in front of their tribunals I couldn't keep up with my classes," Gutierrez says. He dropped out of college but continued to study under grants from the Ford Foundation and the RFK Memorial Fellowship, two prestigious liberal think tanks.
Meanwhile, he transferred his newfound political enthusiasm to the presidential primaries. Jennings, an antiwar activist in college, recalls Gutierrez as a "dynamic, charismatic" student leader and later as a pivotal figure in the state campaign of New York Mayor John Lindsay, who scored dramatically in the 1972 Democratic presidential primary in Arizona.
"It was really breathtaking, in a way, to watch Alfredo's organizing skills and his ability to take a campaign and run with it," Jennings says. "Alfredo clearly understood that if you put together a strategy to organize and turn out the vote with discipline, you could come away with the prize, which was delegate slots to the national convention."
The state's Democratic party establishment was solidly behind Senator Edmund Muskie of Maine, while George McGovern's young reformers had been organizing support for their candidate for a year. Gutierrez convinced the Valley's young Hispanic activists to put people in each candidate's camp, and wound up backing Lindsay himself. With only about thirty days to campaign, Gutierrez, Jennings and others in the Lindsay camp turned out the vote so effectively that their candidate scooped up more delegate seats than any candidate besides Muskie.
GUTIERREZ ATTRIBUTES his political instincts, particularly his organizing skill, to the history of unionism in the copper towns. "My father was union and there was that tradition of organizing within the community I grew up in," he says.
In 1972, Gutierrez surprised fellow Hispanic activists with the announcement that he planned to challenge his district's incumbent in the state legislature, to which only one other Hispanic had been elected since its formation in 1912. "Alfredo was always willing to take chances," recalls Pastor, then a teacher at North High School in Phoenix. "By then he'd had six years of relative success in mobilizing people, but there was that frustration--shared by all of us--of looking around at the various public offices and saying, `Why aren't I there?' Alfredo was the first one willing to take that on."
Gutierrez built his campaign around improving health services to the impoverished South Phoenix residents, most of them black or Hispanic. "The incumbent had been in office a long time, he was an executive with APS, and in my opinion was totally out of touch with the needs of his constituents," Gutierrez recalls. "People in my district really depended on the county hospital, and it was common at that time for a person to wait hours to see a doctor."
There followed a series of the roughest campaigns in Arizona politics, as Gutierrez won the District 23 senatorial seat and then fought off repeated comeback attempts by the defeated incumbent, Clovis Campbell. Gutierrez persuaded constituents he would include them in public life in a way they had never before experienced.
"He was about empowerment," Jennings says. "He insisted on access for other Hispanics once he was in a position of power, rather than setting himself up to be the one guy the establishment would deal with and who would deliver the community's vote on something, which tended to be the pattern with black leaders."
Gutierrez says his role was outlined in a private conversation with the late U.S. District Court Judge Valdemar Cordova. "Just after I got elected, Judge Cordova told me that throughout his career he had been not a leader, as such, but a convener of people," Gutierrez recalls. "He said, `Now you are the convener, it's up to you to bring people together.'"
When Gutierrez arrived at the state Senate, he was immediately labeled a "radical" by the Arizona Republic, which drew the curiosity of his new colleagues, most of them conservative Anglos from rural counties. "They thought they were going to meet Che Guevara," Gutierrez quips.
Within two years of his arrival, however, Gutierrez had taken control of the Senate. The old Democratic majority leader, Harold Giss, died unexpectedly of a heart attack in 1974, giving Gutierrez an early opportunity to make his move. He had been helping progressive, young urban Democrats get elected since his own victory, and Giss' death led to a power struggle between the old and new groups.
"Within that scheme, I was seen as a centrist because I shared with the conservatives a perception that jobs are the most important thing and with the liberals I shared feelings about civil rights," Gutierrez explains. One of his chief allies in the leadership battle was Marcia Weeks, then a state senator representing the working-class neighborhoods of west Phoenix.
Weeks' fellow corporation commissioner Jennings, then representing South Phoenix in the state House of Representatives, says Gutierrez rose on the strength of his abilities, pure and simple. "He's more than just a good talker; he could glance at a bill and grasp its essential meaning immediately," Jennings says. "So he impressed his colleagues with his technical skill, his oratorical skills were equivalent, and he was funny to boot."
Gutierrez had a counterpart in the House of Representatives, Republican majority leader Burton Barr. Barr was such an operator the legislature was once described as "88 people surrounded by Burton Barr."
Together Gutierrez and Barr so dominated the legislative process that passing a bill became largely a matter of winning their support, and the two worked closely together. "Barr usually managed to strip out the right-wing wacko stuff, and then Alfredo would add stuff to improve it, bottom-line stuff for his own good-guy groups," Jennings says. Gutierrez defines his main goals as reforming the state's system of providing social services and creating jobs. Like his previous crusades, this one grew not from ideology but from the practical concerns of Arizona's poor.
"I can't stress enough how important job creation was to me, that government had a role to stimulate the economy, build roads, make sure the mines stayed open."
He also believed state government had a responsibility to help people. "Up until then, the social-service system's leadership had prided itself on how many people they could turn away," he says. "The services were outrageously bad. People would have to start lining up at three and four in the morning to get food stamps. The whole system was insensitive."
Then-Governor Bruce Babbitt shared Gutierrez's conviction about the need for a humane system to help the state's neediest citizens. The person Babbitt assigned to clean up the Department of Economic Security was Bill Jamieson. Together, Gutierrez and Jamieson wrought basic improvements to the delivery of services and forced the legislature's growing Republican majority to acknowledge its responsibility in these areas.
The two also formed an enduring friendship and, following Gutierrez's retirement from the legislature, established a consulting partnership, Jamieson and Gutierrez, from which Gutierrez launched his new career.
On other social issues as well, such as civil rights and abortion rights, Gutierrez was the liberals' most effective advocate. But he was never the virginal standard-bearer he is sometimes portrayed as by people who feel he has betrayed those ideals.
"I remain very controversial within my own community because a lot of my opinions diverge with those of most Hispanics," Gutierrez concedes. "I have real trouble [supporting] quotas, with Chicano studies, and with the whole notion of Aztlan [the mythic seat of Chicano culture, a pre-Columbian empire encompassing Mexico and the southwestern quarter of the United States]."
Despite his family's union background, Gutierrez supported Babbitt's decision to dispatch the Arizona National Guard to Clifton-Morenci during a bitter union strike against Phelps Dodge in 1983. The presence of the guard enabled Phelps Dodge to import nonunion workers, busing them literally past the strikers, and fire union members.
Babbitt said the guard was necessary to prevent bloodshed. "I don't know if I would've made the same decision as Babbitt," Gutierrez says. "But I can tell you the threat of violence was real. The danger of bloodshed was real."
Gutierrez gave tacit support to Phelps Dodge again, when it was under attack by environmentalists, says Priscilla Robinson, a veteran Tucson-based activist. "During the struggle to clean up copper-smelter pollution, we were trying to rally Democratic support to counter Republican support for Phelps Dodge, and Alfredo refused to support us," Robinson says. "In fact, he was the sole barrier, and he never did have a good reason.
"He claimed it was too controversial but, in fact, it wasn't," she says. "By this point, we had the overwhelming majority of public opinion behind us."
Robinson says ample precedent exists for Gutierrez's current, controversial advocacy for BFI and ENSCO, both of which are attempting to build huge waste-disposal facilities in Arizona. "He was never a dependable friend on environmental issues," Robinson says.
Gutierrez acknowledges that he sometimes parted company with environmentalists, particularly regarding copper smelters. "They looked at copper smelters and saw pollution, while I would look at them and see jobs," he says.
FELLOW LEGISLATORS finally tired of Gutierrez's trickiness, says a former colleague, and Gutierrez acknowledges many were eager to see him move on when he announced his retirement five years ago.
"I'm under no illusions that when I left there were a whole lot of people who wanted me to stay away," Gutierrez says. "For years people were always worried every time I went on the (Senate) floor, that I'd pull some parliamentary trick and do something they weren't expecting.
"I guess [this sense of strategy] comes from the years on the street," Gutierrez reflects. "All the obvious spots are taken so you look for the obscure opportunity, you learn to be . . . ."
Perhaps the word he is searching for is "devious."
"I like Alfredo," says Renz Jennings, echoing a sentiment expressed by many of Gutierrez's old compatriots. "But I worry about his soul."
Even Alfredo's friends concede he has ventured into an ethical swamp.
"I feel there's a natural conflict of interest in what he's doing," says Linda Nadolski.
Gutierrez's climb to the stratospheric centers of power is all the more resonant because of where he started.
"I was from a tough family; it was a tough place. I survived. What else can I say?"
About him lingers the faint aura of a man who can take care of himself in dark alleys.
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Within two years of his arrival, Gutierrez had taken control of the Senate.
"I can't stress enough how important job creation was to me," says the former legislator.
"He was never a dependable friend on environmental issues," Priscilla Robinson says.