Do I hear 11 million, 12, do I hear 12?

From the Friday edition of the Arizona Daily Star. I always wondered about the wisdom of that wording.

Randy Graf update.

david-goliath.jpg      I usually work with news that is already posted on the web but I am going to give a Randy Graf update based on “unnamed sources.” I hope I do better than the MSM.

     Graf was at a lunch today in Tucson with Karl Rove. A major local Republican Party supporter spoke in strong support of Graf and urged everyone there to write checks. The campaign has been very busy with fundraising and getting Randy to events. Fundraising is apparently going well. There is a high level of energy at campaign HQ and lots of national attention being paid to this race.

     Randy has an effective new radio spot out there on the airwaves. A woman’s voice talking about the need for a common sense but serious approach to border security. Speaking of border security Gabby is catching a little flak from the left for her “get tough” ad.

     This afternoon I heard an independent expenditure radio ad by the Minuteman PAC attacking Gifffords as soft on illegal immigration. Apparently they are also running a TV spot. So now she is getting hit from the left and the right. Not a fun position in which to be. I wonder if she will keep touting her mythical 19% lead after a week or two of those Minuteman ads?

     Speaking of polls, a new one will be released this Sunday on the Tucson Weekly blog. Of course we will cover that when released with a story and link. The poll has supposedly been done for a few days and they are sitting on it.

Friday 9-29-06, 10:05 pm

Republicans Clean Their Own House

Mark Foley

Florida Congressman Mark Foley is officially out of the closet. With the shocking revelation and evidence that Foley expressed sexually explicit emails with at least one Capitol page – a 16-year-old boy, Foley was forced to resign.

This is a great example of how Republicans are far more likely to clean up their own house than Democrats. For years, rumors have swirled that Foley was a closeted homosexual. In 2003, Florida columnist, Bob Norman, attempted to “out” Foley citing various quotes including one from Tracy Thorne, a homosexual activist who asserted that Foley brought a boyfriend along with him on a visit to the activist.

Foley has also accepted political contributions from the Human Rights Campaign and has voted for a number of pro-homosexual bills in Congress.

So it should be no surprise among conservative Republicans that Foley lacked the self-discipline to control his urges to pursue young boys.

But what I find most disturbing is that the man was chairman of the House Caucus on Missing and Exploited Children! Why the Republican leadership did not recognize the potential for hypocrisy over this man’s personal life and position with this sensitive and important committee stuns me.

Like the bizzaro former GOP California Senate Candidate Michael Huffington, I for one am pleased to see this Republican go because he blemished the principles of the party.

More reading:
Being Gay in the GOP: http://www.bostonphoenix.com/boston/news_features/editorial/documents/02919063.htm
Don’t Ask Because Mark Foley Won’t Tell: http://www.sptimes.com/2003/06/01/Perspective/Don_t_ask__because_Ma.shtml
Rep. Mark Foley Won’t Discuss His ‘Orientation,’ but Others Will: http://www.cwfa.org/articles/4008/CFI/cfreport/index.htm

 

Rio Nuevo, another $7.1 million wasted.

rainbowbridge.jpg      Logic prevailed and the University of Arizona decided to not try and build a $350,000,000 bridge over interstate 10. There is the slight issue of the $7.1 million bill for design work. The University wants the City of Tucson to cover half of the bill, $3.6 million. The city does not seem too upset since they can take it out of the bottomless pit known as Rio Nuevo.

     That’s great. All the liberal and moderate legislators are whining about education and health care being under funded so they get together and pass Rio Nuevo so they can waste $7.1 million dollars on a $350,000,000 bridge that never passed the sniff test of making the slightest bit of sense.

     And what is this vaunted Science Center about anyway? Does it involve classroom space where undergraduates will receive instruction or facilities for graduate students to conduct original research? That is what I thought was the purpose of a university. Other wise it just sounds like Tucson wants to build an amusement park downtown and sneak the funding through the university system.

     Hopefully the legislature will see that Rio Nuevo is a complete fraud and waste of money. Maybe some of the conservatives in the house and senate could get together and end Rio Nuevo and channel the money instead to education and heath care. That would make for an interesting debate.

Thursday 9-28-06, 11:15 pm

Janet Made the Appointments

Arizona 9/11 Memorial Website 

Here is a link (pages 45-46) to the document that began the appointment of members to the Arizona 9/11 Memorial Commission. Needless to say, Janet Napolitano’s fingerprints are all over this. The text of the document is as follows:

GOVERNOR’S 9-11 MEMORIAL COMMISSION
1700 W. Washington St.
Phoenix, AZ 85007
(602) 542-1316
www.az911memorial.com/
Diane Saunders, Director

The Commission shall consist of no more than 35 people. The Commission membership shall include a chairperson to be named by the Governor. The Commission membership shall include at-large members representing government, first responders, victims, the business community, the general public and other diverse parties who share an interest in the development of this Memorial. The members shall serve terms of two years from the date of this executive order and may be re-appointed by the Governor for additional two-year terms. The Governor’s Office shall serve as staff to the Commission. The Commission shall plan and establish an appropriate and fitting Memorial in remembrance of the events of September 11, 2001. The Commission shall solicit and review ideas and designs for the Memorial. The Commission shall identify funding strategies for the costs of the Memorial and related expenses. The Commission shall submit an interim report on its activities to the Governor on or before September 11, 2003, and it shall be posted on the Governor’s web site. Executive Order 2003-2.

Term Expires
John Basha, Jr. Napolitano 08/13/2006
Lynne M. Christian Napolitano 10/01/2006
Donna Killoughey Bird Napolitano 08/27/2006
Daniel Valenzuela Napolitano 06/10/2007
31 vacancies

Here is the current list of commission members:

Crystal Allman  
Benito Almanza  
Joe Anderson  
Marcos Andrade  
Johnny Basha  
Viana Bruce  
Cassidy Campana  
Lynne Christian  
Shelley Cohn  
Kathy Copeland  
Rich Dozer  
Susan Ehrlich  
Paul Eppinger  
Jennifer Glazar  
Dan Hoffman  
Jake Jacobsen  
Donna Killoughey Bird  
Ronnie Lopez  
Paul Luna  
Ken Magoch  
Cindy  Petrovich  
Penny Pfaelzer  
Bob Ramsey  
Diane Saunders  
Billy Shields  
Sonia Singh  
Steve Speisman  
Joe Tucker  
Daniel Valenzuela  
George Weisz

9/11 Commission Goes On Offense

Here’s the text of a message I personally received September 26th from the Chairman of the Arizona 9/11 Commission:

I’m writing to you as the Chairman of the 9/11 Memorial Commission. I represent the group that has spent years researching, designing and raising private donations to build a memorial to the tragedy of 9/11. The Memorial now proudly stands in Wesley Bolin Plaza at the Arizona State Capitol, thanks to the involvement of more than 30,000 Arizonans.

My point in writing is to thank you for your support, and to share with you more about the Memorial, how it was created, and how it will educate future generations of Arizonan’s and make sure we never forget the loss of lives and experiences on 9/11, which are still affecting us today in so many ways.

  • The Arizona 9/11 Commission was created in 2003 by Executive Order 2003-02 by then-Governor Jane Dee Hull. The legislature unanimously passed HB 2350 in 2003 to allow the memorial to be built in Wesley Bolin Plaza.
  • The Commission included family members of those who died in the terrorist attacks, a survivor, business leaders, clergy and Arizona’s first responders who participated in the Search and Rescue mission at the World Trade Center in the days and weeks that followed the terrorist attacks.
  • It is a bi-partisan Commission with a non-political purpose.
  • The work of the Commission was done in more that fifty public meetings, with notice posted in advance, and open to all that chose to attend.
  • The memorial was paid for with contributions from private corporations and individuals. The Governor assisted in fundraising. The Governor did not have editorial control over the content of the memorial. The Commission and the artist team spent many hours discussing and debating the final quotes, with the purpose of expressing the history, experience and feelings on and after 9/11.
  • The family members on the Commission were clear that they did not want or need another headstone. The consensus was that this Memorial should be a place of reflection.
  • To create the memorial a nation wide search for artist was initiated, with a requirement that the team have an Arizona presence. After a lengthy public bid and selection process the Commission contracted with CoLAB Jones Studio, Inc. to design and McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. to build the memorial.
  • The 54 quotes and dates used in the memorial came from two sources.
    • The first is the bipartisan national 9/11 Commission that was appointed by President Bush.
    • The second, from oral interviews conducted by a public historian at Arizona State University’s History Department. ASU was hired by the Commission to conduct interviews and collect information from Arizonans who had personal connections to the tragedies.
  • The quotes were fact-checked by advisers to the Arizona Historical Advisory Commission and approved by the Commission. The final statements in the memorial were selected to show a range of thoughts and feelings regarding Arizona’s experiences with 9-11 and timelines of what happened on that day and since.
  • At the dedication ceremony on 9/11/06, Commission member Donna Bird of Tempe, whose husband Gary died in the attacks, called the memorial “comforting and dynamic” and that its materials of both concrete and steel showed the nation’s ability to move on with “steel resolve of Americans to embrace our future, with no fear.” More than 2500 people attended the ceremony to remember the victims of 9/11 and dedicate the new Memorial.
  • The quotes include the final words of victims who called their families before losing contact, and phrases describing the hopelessness felt by Arizonans after the attacks. Also included in the inscriptions are patriotic messages and other statements in support of the United States and its leaders. A few examples:
    • FLIGHT 93 PASSENGERS FIGHT HIJACKERS
    • “MUST BOMB BACK”
    • MULTIPLE FUNERALS IN A DAY
    • PATRIOTISM PEAKS
    • US AIRSTRIKES HIT KABUL & KANDAHAR
    • US PATRIOT ACT SIGNED INTO LAW
    • REMEMBER!
    • “I’LL BE HOME FOR DINNER TUESDAY NIGHT”
    • FEELING OF INVINCIBILITY LOST
    • LAST FAINT WORDS “HELP ME”
    • DUG 8 HOURS ONLY FOUND ONE HELMET STRAP
    • 216 AZ FIREFIGHTERS RESPOND TO WTC
    • 9:29 AM PRESIDENT ASKS NATION TO JOIN IN MOMENT OF SILENCE
  • Working with staffers of State Education Superintendent Tom Horne at the State Department of Education, the Commission developed a voluntary 9/11 curriculum for grades k-12 that teachers can access on the Dept. of Ed web site. This effort was led by Steve Speisman, a Commissioner and teacher, who lost his brother Robby on the flight that hit the Pentagon.

The Memorial is a lasting tribute to the victims of 9/11, and the family members and survivors expressed at the dedication that it was healing for them.

It will also fulfill the mission of educating future generations of Arizonan’s about the tragic losses, the emotions, and the way we came together as American’s.

Thank you again, and I hope that you will visit the Memorial many times.

Billy Shields
Chairman
Arizona 9/11 Memorial Commission

The Ring Around Janet’s Neck

Attending the dedication of the Arizona 9-11 Memorial at Wesley Bolin Plaza in Phoenix with Billy Shields, chairman of the Arizona 9-11 Memorial Commission. 

Watching the whole September 11th Memorial fiasco take place reminds me of the whole Eddie Basha implosion during the 1994 gubernatorial race against Fife Symington. For those who were involved in Arizona politics, a little history reminder. Eddie Basha and Fife Symington both participated in a radio debate during the campaign leading up to the General Election in 1994. When Eddie was called on the mat on the issue of homosexual marriage, he responded that he supported it. That was the beginning of the end for Eddie Basha.

Within the last week, Janet Napolitano has managed to walk her way into a minefield over the issue of the 9/11 memorial at Wesley Bolin Plaza. 

This debate would not be taking place if it were not for the astute work of political blogger extroardinaire Greg Patterson at EspressoPundit who broke the story late last week. Now, the story has gone national and has become a political albatross or should I say ring around Janet Napolitano’s neck.

Even the Arizona Republican Party has launched a new ad pointing out the controversy.

Look for the possibility of things to escalate as the legislature considers calling a special session to take action against the memorial. Maybe they ought to discuss the renaming of mountains in the same session?

Links:
Janet Napolitano’s Message of the Week – Monday, September 11, 2006
Arizona 9/11 Memorial Website Message from the Governor

Munsil within single digits.

life.jpg     According to a Wall Street Journal Battle Ground poll done by Zogby Len Munsil is within 9% of Janet Napolitano.

Wednesday 9-27-06, 10:05 pm

Plausible delieability.

Pinocchio.jpg      According to Hot AZ It Gets the Arizona Democratic Party is behind the attack web site on Len Munsil.

     I wonder if they have some internal polling that caused them to sink so low or if this is now just standard fare for the Democrats.

Tuesday 9-26-06, 6:25 pm

Follow-up. The story gets covered Dan Nowicki at the Arizona Republic.

Safe and rare?

turpentine.jpg       A big part of the abortion myth is that somehow legal abortion prevents people from trying dangerous at-home abortions. The favorite cry is “no more back-alley abortions.”

     Here is another example of an at-home abortion attempt despite the fact that the procedure is legal. Let’s see, the abortion lobby has what they want and some people are still going through strange and twisted ways to terminate life inside the womb.

     This pregnancy involves an underage girl and is being investigated for possible sexual assault. I bet that Planned Parenthood would have been all too will to happy to get rid of the “evidence”, leaving the young girl suffer quietly on her own in the years ahead.

Tuesday 9-26-06, 8:30 am