Predictions 2010

I love watching the predictions heading into the new year. For you Horizon watchers, here is the video clip of predictions by local political reporters that aired on December 18th.

Here are my quick picks for 2010:

  1. JD Hayworth enters the race against John McCain and stuns the establishment with his ability to raise money.
  2. Janet Napolitano “resigns” before January 20th.
  3. The two traditionally financed gubernatorial candidates drop out of the race when Dean Martin finally enters the race and begins to “suck the oxygen out of the room.”

Now, it’s your turn to agree, disagree or make your own!

AZGOP Bombshell (Victory Plan 2010)

I’m angry.

Right when we should be organizing to kick Dem derriere in 2010, a small group of people (who like to think of themselves as elite) put together a poorly written plan called Arizona Victory 2010 and try to foist it on the Arizona Republican Party in secret just prior to the state convention in January.

Worse, none of them are on the executive committee of the party (exceot one) and all of them are lobbyists, from outside of Arizona or work for one of the candidates!

Take a look at what got posted Monday to an Arizona-based, libertarian-leaning website (link provided below the quote):

The Arizona GOP will be taken over by the Agenda of “New American Century” with a teleconference vote of Arizona’s GOP leadership Dec 30th,… and there is nothing the rank and file Republican Activists and Elected Officers of the party can do about it.

http://www.freedomsphoenix.com/Article/063261-2009-12-28-declare-your-independence-with-ernest-hancock-morning-december-28th-2009.htm

Notwithstanding the obvious libertarian objection in the quote above, the concerns to Republicans, conservatives and AZGOP party grassroots activists should be obvious.  There are so many issues I dont even know where to start.

First, where the heck did freedomsphoenix get a copy of this from?

http://www.freedomsphoenix.com/Uploads/001/Media/Arizona_Victory_Plan_Draft_for_ExComm_091218.pdf

Second, note the stakeholder list, it’s the same old McCain crew trying to take over the party again and spend all the party’s money with no accountability and with no representation from the grassroots PCs and State Committeemen.

Third, note the cryptic comment about “holding the governor’s office”.  Given the “stakeholder” list that includes no elected Republican party officers except for one, does that mean that they will be supporting John Munger against Jan Brewer?  Does it mean that they will throw Dean Martin under the bus if he ends up filing to run?

Fourth, is creating a “division” of the Arizona Republican Party which behaves like a PAC even legal?

Fifth, why would we as a party permit the state party to incorporate the “worst of” into our Victory Plan?  This plan includes the “worst of” Karl Rovian holdovers like Allan Philp and the “worst of” top-down authoritarian-style party management apparatchiks like Shiree Verdone and Lisa James.

Sixth, the plan appears to give this list of unaccountable and unelected “stakeholders” the power to spend party money in primary races, essentially giving them the power to anoint party-supported primary winners and losers not just as the federal level but also in state house and senate races. 

Seventh, have the teaparty movement and the New York race taught us nothing?  Protecting the same old retread candidates who brought us TARP (and yes that includes some Arizona Republican elected officials) and who voted for the largest spending programs ever (at the time under Bush) is not acceptable to the large and growing conservative independent voters who left the Republican party over the very shenanigans this group of “stakeholders” is trying to pull right here in this very “Victory” plan!  Should a “Victory” plan not try to incorporate those teaparty voters as part of our plan to win in 2010?

Bottom line….. this is a bad plan. 

State party officers, if you are reading this hopefully and presumably in time before voting on it today, it’s time to go back to the drawing board and come up with a plan that heals the party, not further divides it, as we enter this vital 2010 election cycle. 

Please go back to the drawing board and come up with a plan that energizes the base to go out and do the groundwork.  Please come up with a plan that takes the teaparty movement into account and brings those conservative independents back to us – a plan that will bring us fiscal conservatism and smaller government, both at the state and federal level.  A plan we can all live with and a plan that will ensure Victory for Arizona Republicans in 2010.

Oops! Is Brewer Padding Her Resume On Purpose?

brewer oopsThe Arizona Guardian today reported that Governor Brewer has included her membership in a “handful of community organizations and government boards” on both her official and campaign biographies that, evidently, she does not actually belong to anymore.  Oops!  These include the Maricopa County System on Justice Intervention for the Seriously Mentally Ill and the Japanese American Citizens League according to its popular “Guardian Angel” blog.

Why would Brewer feel it necessary to pad her resume?  And maybe more importantly, did she do it on purpose?

According to Brewer’s spokesman, her “staff has the responsibility” of making sure that her resume is accurate and this controversy should been seen as nothing more than an mere oversight.  Basically, it’s not really her responsibility because she is just too busy with more important matters to be bothered with, you know, little details about her previous community leadership experience.

Mistakes are bound to happen.  That’s a given like death and taxes.  But when they do you are probably just better off by owning up to them, taking responsibility and set things straight – not shifting the blame.

’09 was a pivotal political year

By Emil Franzi, Special to The Explorer

Measuring the relevance of important dates usually comes later. Some, like 1941 and 9-11, are immediately obvious, others need time to sink in. In October of 1929, nobody thought “wow, we’re starting the Great Depression.”

Often converging events need their dots connected. The year 2009 had a lot of converging events.

Like 1929, 2009 started with a new President and large majorities for his party in both houses of Congress where the numbers are strikingly similar – 58-39-1 and 267-167-1 then for Republicans, to 58-40-2 and 256-178-1 for Democrats now. Biggest difference was Herbert Hoover won by 17 percent to Obama’s 7 percent, and carried 41 of 48 states.

The 1930 election gave Democrats eight more Senators and 53 Representatives. GOP popularity sank while Hoover instituted counter-productive proto-New Deal measures. He was smashed in 1932 by FDR and Democrats gained 90 more House seats and 13 Senators. After FDR’s 1936 re-election, it was 76D, 16R, 4I, and 331D-76R-4I.

The tide turned in 1938 with heavy Republican gains. The New Deal was out of gas, unemployment was rising and an arrogant President tried packing the Supreme Court. The events of 2009 are accelerating and compacting that process for President Obama, who is far more arrogant and less skilled than FDR.

As Michael Barone notes, 60-plus years of mounting federal bureaucracy make it impossible for any President to do what FDR did when he told Harry Hopkins to simply put the unemployed on the government payroll. “Shovel-ready jobs” are a myth. Civil service, due process, union deals and environmental regulations make it impossible to hand anybody a shovel without months, often years of red tape. Unemployment will remain high until the private sector creates more jobs.

FDR and other successful Presidents focused on implementing the popular portions of their agenda first. Obama and Democrat Congressional leaders in 2009 exposed the degeneration of the federal legislative process in forcing an unpopular health care measure upon too many people. In doing so, they exhibit a political cluelessness rivaling those members of Czar Nicholas II’s Court ,who had no idea who Vladimir Lenin was up to the moment he had them shot.

Too many liberals look down their elitist noses at millions who are part of the latest populist reaction to bad governance that emerged in 2009 in the Tea Party movement. About the only thing that could prevent massive Republican gains, including the White House in 2012, would be the failure of the GOP to absorb Tea Parties and force them into their own party. The only hope for liberal Democrats is that the GOP is as inept as they are.

The year 2009 also exposed the massive manipulation occurring by pseudo-scientists supposedly compiling the climate data used to justify their political agenda. While attention focused on the sleazy e-mails (probably leaked, not hacked), more relevant was the databases exposed that have folks like Russian scientists wondering where the real data they sent disappeared to. Warm Earthers and their Democrat co-religionists took a bath on this one.

Strikingly obvious in 2009 was the almost total collapse of the old elite and in-bred media. They’ve been gradually replaced by a combination of cable news, talk radio and the internet, which continue to report what they ignore or, worse, misunderstand.

Finally, only the clueless believe “there’s no difference between Republicans and Democrats.” The year 2009 ended with all 60 Democrat and Independent senators voting for Obamacare and all 40 Republicans voting against it. Polarization and partisanship have never been greater.

That polarization gives us the clarity needed to make real decisions and exposes the trite notion that somehow everything can be compromised. It may well be the greatest contribution we got from 2009.

Hear Emil Franzi and Tom Danehy Saturdays 1-4 p.m. on KVOI 1030AM.

Is JD Hayworth a Rino Hunter or Poser? Or should John McCain be given a free pass this election?

This in today.  There is to be a conference call in which the doctrine outlined in the Victory Plan Draf will be ratified.  This appears to be being done outside of AzGOP State Mandatory Meeting slated for next month.  Now who could be behind this nefarious plot?  Hmm… maybe the man who brought us President Obama by not waging campaign 2008 with the vigor he should have.  Thank him for the current POTUS.  Oh, and they’re doing it on the eve of the New Years Holiday so you will be otherwise distracted and wake up with this hangover come January 2, 2010.  Flush the John!

Attention Big Game Hunters - Target Sighed

Attention Big Game Hunters - Target Sighed

I have read the many concerns about the Arizona 2010 Victory Plan Draft.  I agree with all of them.  However, the most egregious part of the plan to me is the third bullet under overview and goals.  “Reelecting all current federal office holders”  The special deal “earmark” for federal office holders is a prime example of why the American voter rates the Congress , both Republican and Democrats, so poorly.  The hubris in the directive that we reelect all current federal office holders is unfathomable and hypocritical.  The back-up for it, “popularity of our incumbents” is just down right  untruthful.
Have the Stakeholders not read the polls indicating how out-of-touch with the Republican base the Republican voter believes our federal representatives are?   In essence, the stakeholders are telling us they have done away with the primary elections for our federal incumbents.   They believe the governor should go through a primary but not our special privileged federal office holders.   I know Campaign Finance Reform was an incumbent protection act, but I had no idea it would be taken to this length.
The Stakeholders like to proclaim that the Republican Party is a bottom-up organization.  This plan proves otherwise.  The Stakeholders have become like the Congressional Democrats they complain about who abuse their political power.
Rob Haney
Chairman
Maricopa County Republican Committee

Tax-Payer funded Phone points illegal border crossers to water

The insanity that spews forth from the bleeding red state of California is getting worse ever day.  Now, our tax dollars are being used to develop GPS phones to help illegal aliens navigate their way to the US.

SAN DIEGO Faculty at University of California, San Diego are developing a GPS-enabled cell phone that tells dehydrated migrants where to find water. It also pipes in poetry from phone speakers, regaling them on their journey much like Emma Lazarus’ words did a century ago to the “huddled masses yearning to breathe free” on Ellis Island. [Except those immigrant were coming to America legally.]

The Transborder Immigrant Tool is part technology endeavor, part art project. It introduces a high-tech twist to an old debate about how far activists can go to prevent migrants from dying on the border without breaking the law.

The designers – three visual artists on UCSD’s faculty and an English professor at the University of Michigan – are undeterred as they criticize a U.S. policy they say embraces illegal immigrants for cheap labor while letting them die crossing the border.

“It’s about giving water to somebody who’s dying in the desert of dehydration,[While breaking the law.]” said Micha Cardenas, 32, a UCSD lecturer.

I just had to Google this Micha fool and not surprising, this is what I found.  [Remember we are talking about California.]

Micha Cárdenas / Azdel Slade is a transgender artist, theorist and trickster [whatever the hell that is]. She is a Lecturer in the Visual Arts department at UCSD. She is an Artist/Researcher at the Experimental Game Lab at CRCA and the b.a.n.g. lab at CalIT2. Her interests include the interplay of technology, gender, sex and biopolitics.

If California wants to not only continue but now enhance their own demise, fine, let them.  But there must be something that the rest of the United States can do to help California secede from the union.  We can no longer wait for that giant earthquake to send them sliding into the Pacific Ocean.

Does corporate assist for Brewer fundraising plea soil a “Clean” campaign?

A friend forwarded me the below fundraising solicitation on behalf of Gov. Jan Brewer’s 2010 gubernatorial campaign.  She found it interesting that a 501(c)(6) corporation sent this disclaimer-free $5 dollar political solicitation to their entire membership though it’s made clear it’s coming from the former U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters in her role as co-chair of the Brewer campaign.  The provision of the Associated General Contractors’ e-mail distribution list has real value to a political campaign as the administration@azagc.org mail stamp indicates.

I’m not an election lawyer nor the son of an election lawyer but does the fact that our governor is running “Clean” make this kind of corporate campaign largess particularly squalid? Does this potential corporate contribution warrant a Citizens Clean Elections Commission investigation?  I don’t know but maybe someone in the Munger, Parker, Mills or Graham campaigns might look into it.

Regardless of the legalities of this assist from the road-building Associated General Contractors, isn’t it interesting whose providing the Brewer campaign with it’s five-dollar qualifying contributions?  The fact that Gov. Brewer “will continue her strong efforts to provide funding for transportation upon her re-election” pretty much says it all.  Those with their snouts deepest in the federal stimulus trough are lining up behind their girl for governor.  Just like they did in 2006 when they lined up “unanimously” behind their other girl for governor, Janet Napolitano.

__________________________________________________________________________

From: Mary E. Peters [mailto:administration@azagc.org]
Sent: Tue 12/29/2009 10:17 AM
To:
Subject:
Important message from Mary Peters

Dear AGC Member and Industry Partner:

As we approach the end of what has been a very challenging year for our nation and for Arizona, it is a time for reflection on what is really important.  It is a time to focus on what it will take to resolve our significant economic challenges.  It is a time when we as an industry need to band together and chart a course to a more prosperous future. 

We have the opportunity to support a Governor who will lead our state out of today’s challenges and a return to economic stability. 

These tough times call for a tough leader – a proven leader who is not afraid to make the right decisions for our State.  We need a leader who will put the people’s interests above political interests.  We need a leader who will make the right decisions for Arizona’s future.  That is exactly why we as an industry need to band together and create a united front to support a Governor who will do just that.  

Jan Brewer is that leader, but she cannot do it alone — she needs our support.

She understands that Arizona’s families and businesses are going through hard times.  She knows that we have to balance the budget today and provide long-term, sustainable solutions to stabilize and grow our economy for the future.  Governor Jan Brewer has made over $1 billion in cuts in order to put us on track to balance Arizona’s budget while still making sure the most critical programs are meeting the needs of individuals who need them most. Her plans for the future include high-paying jobs, investments in Arizona’s infrastructure and a strong education system for our children.

  • As a State Representative and State Senator Jan Brewer supported transportation funding for the State.  Under her watch at the State Legislature from 1983 – 1996, she placed emphasis on transportation projects, such as funding for Prop. 300 freeways. 
  • As a County Supervisor, Jan Brewer helped balance the county budget to provide resources for Maricopa County transportation priorities.
  • As Secretary of State, Jan Brewer supported Prop. 400 to ensure a continued revenue source for Maricopa County freeways to build the critical infrastructure we need to continue to build a business friendly environment in Arizona. 
  • As Governor, Jan Brewer has worked to ensure Arizona receives every dollar due to the state in the ARRA/Stimulus bill, advocated for the Canamex Corridor and designation of I-11. She works diligently to prevent further erosion of transportation funds by the State Legislature, and is working to make sure Arizona receives our fair share of federal funding from both high speed rail funding and the reauthorization of Surface Transportation programs.   
  • Gov. Brewer recognizes the important link between transportation infrastructure and economic development.  She appreciates the significant value Arizona contractors and consultants provide to our economy, and will continue her strong efforts to provide funding for transportation upon her re-election.

Jan Brewer is making, and will continue to make, the tough decisions for Arizona to put our state on a permanent, strong economic foundation. But, she can’t do it alone. She needs you to stand behind her, fight with her and support her.

Please click here now to support Governor Jan Brewer’s re-election campaign.

The time to act is now.  The time to join together to support a proven leader is now.

Sincerely,

Mary E. Peters
Governor Brewer 2010 Co-Chair
Former United States Secretary of Transportation

The System Worked

“THE SYSTEM WORKED.”

Department of Homeland Security Chief Janet Napolitano in response to the thwarting of the attempt to blow-up an airplane over Detroit on Christmas. 

So a terrorist sneaks a bomb through airline security (only to be stop by a badly designed bomb and quick heroic responses by other passengers) counts as the system working in the Obama Administration.  I think Jonah Goldberg’s response over at The Corner is the proper response to this statement.

Merry Christmas!

On behalf of all the writers here at Sonoran Alliance, I’d like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. Here are a few video clips from some of the best Christmas movies:

YouTube Preview Image YouTube Preview Image YouTube Preview Image YouTube Preview Image YouTube Preview Image

Sen. Pearce on the Supervisors, Courts, Arpaio & Thomas

A m e r i c a n P o s t – G a z e t t e

Distributed by C O M M O N S E N S E , in Arizona

December 24, 2009

Senator Russell Pearce

I am concerned

Like most of us, I am very concerned about the appearance of the “circle the wagon” mentality going on in the courts, Maricopa County and by the Arizona Bar (an arm of the Supreme Court (mostly liberal trial attorneys). There certainly appears to be a culture of corruption. When folks feel our courts are above scrutiny, we run a great risk to the checks and balances of power by anyone branch.

The appointment of Former Chief Justice McGregor: While I have worked with Former Chief Justice Ruth McGregor and I like her and feel she is very competent, she certainly has the appearance of conflict, she was who appointed Superior Court Presiding Judge Barbara Rodriquez Mundell (a focus of the investigation) to her position and worked with her for the past several years. (By the way phantastic she is a Democrat).

“These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.” –Thomas Paine

I also know County Attorney Andrew Thomas and know him to be a man of integrity and passion for justice and fairness. Even that being said, I am glad we have a system with proper checks and balances to ensure justice. Like most other folks I am greatly concerned about what is going on in Maricopa County.

I am concerned that Judge Mundell created a court to hear “Spanish speaking cases” in violation of the Constitution of the equal protection clause. Especially if there is evidence that the sentences are more lenient than those for English speaking defendants.

I am concerned that the Maricopa County Courts refused to enforce Proposition 100 a Constitutional Amendment passed by 78% of Arizonans to deny bond to illegal aliens who commit serious crimes in Arizona and pose a flight risk and public safety concern to all Citizens.

I am concerned that Judge Mundell handpicked judges to sit on cases where there was evidence of bias and prejudice.

I am concerned (nothing illegal perhaps) that in a time when we are cutting critical public safety positions the Maricopa County Board proceeds with a $350 million capital construction project.

I am grateful that we have a system with checks and balances. We do not live in a ‘Judacracy’ or a police state. One of the greatest threats is a Judiciary that treads into law making or policy setting modes. None of them have ultimate power and should not and we the people should always recognize our ability to remove those who violate public trust or abuse of power. We should elect our Judges as we use to and as we do in Arizona’s other 13 counties. Then “We the People” can and should be in charge of government and those that serve us in these critical positions of public trust.

That is why law enforcement investigates, a Constitutional Office called County Attorney reviews and decides if “probable cause” exists and if so files a complaint that must be signed by a Judge. Then there is a hearing to decide if indeed there is sufficient evidence to proceed to trial and then a trial by a jury of our peers is critical to final justice.

No Christmas Fire for You

In a not-really-surprising-anymore move, local officials embracing the nanny-state mentality are making it illegal for you to gather around the fireplace on Christmas Eve.

The Maricopa County Air Quality Department declared Christmas Eve a no-burn day after the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality posted an air-pollution health watch for today.

Increasing levels of small particulates, morning and evening temperature inversions, cold weather and light winds combined to create the no-burn conditions. Fires add to the particulate pollution, as do vehicles, unpaved roads and equipment such as leaf blowers.

On a no-burn day, residents are asked not to use wood-burning fireplaces, woodstoves or outdoor fire pits and to abstain from burning trash.

Sorry Timmy, NO FIRE FOR YOU!  We all have to do our part to save the planet, and this Christmas Eve is the day we will remember for years to come that we saved Mother Earth.  Now put your fireplace DVD into the machine and quit your whining.

Got to love the comments from this story.

Sorry, we can’t afford the high electricity costs of lighting the furnace. We’ve been burning wood for the last week to keep warm. With no job and no money coming in we have to burn. We are just lucky to have a fireplace and wood. Well, not much, our neighbor’s been stealing some of it when we are gone from the house.

Continuing to highlight these happy times

Being unemployed doesn’t lend itself to firing up the heat pump for a little warmth. We have plenty of wood stored up from tree cuttings around the nieghborhood this year. THere is an exception to the EPA burning rules if the burning is used as the source of heat for the house. BUT I’m not sure if it has to be the ONLY source of heat. Unfortunately, I don’t think they make exceptions for unemployment poverty.

And finally, a man’s man after my own heart.

Really hadn’t planned on having a fire tonight. The lack of a fireplace in my home may have had something to do with that. But after reading this crap, I all of a sudden find myself craving some toasted marshmallows! Nothin like a few pallets from work to spark up the company x-mas party this afternoon! Dont think there will be any problem with getting donations to cover the fine. Think everyone has pretty much had enough of our politicians (inappropriate term) for the year! Comply and conform they say! LOL
And to that, I say………….Kiss My A-S-S and MERRY CHRISTMAS Everyone! Just look for the flames and bring your own marshmallows!

Might even have to give the kids their quads a day early and let em rip up and down the dirt road fer a bit! Get some use outta those new off road use tags I paid for ! Don’t ya love x-mas!!!! lol

Have a happy low-impact, small carbon-footprint, artificial-tree, Jimmy Carter sweater-wearing, recycled paper, Cristmakwanzzakkah.

Christmas Defiled!

Some things are just wrong. Let these photos tell a thousand words. These are the ornaments that are hanging on the Christmas Tree in the Whitehouse.

122309_matt_whxmas1_slideshow_604x500

Whitehouse Christmas Bul 2

Whitehouse Christmas Bulb 3

Whitehouse Christmas Boobs

Gorman’s Strange Stand – Conservative Movement is Cheap and Lazy

And that, according to the LD6 State Senator, is why we lose.  No joke.

GormanIn her most recent blog post, the sophomore Senator set about to lecture the conservative movement on why it loses while the left and its allies like ACORN, win.  We have no idea what has the Senator so upset at Arizona conservatives, but she begins by declaring us “whiners” while the liberals are “winners”.  She then goes on to list a variety of behaviors which she feels the left owns the right on.  Of course, with one of the most conservative legislatures in Arizona history, one has to wonder how Gorman thinks we were able to win all of those races.  Instead, she makes it clear that we have been losing because we won’t get off of our collective rear ends.  But its not just our labor that Gorman wants from our uplifting rears, its our wallets.

Item number one on Gorman’s list is “Give money to campaigns. (ouch)”  Mind you, that’s not our “ouch”, that’s her original text.  If we had to guess why Gorman is frustrated at conservatives not giving money to campaigns, it might have something to do with this.  When you set an online goal of $20,000 and raise a lousy $120 from two total donors, you might get frustrated too.  Then again, Gorman might spend more time analyzing why people won’t give money to her while they are giving to plenty of other candidates.  We’re guessing it has something to do with their property tax bills.

Gorman goes on to describe all of the ways that money helps campaigns and decries the lack of financial support for the McCain for President campaign in 2008.  You see, if we had only given more money to McCain, he would have won and we wouldn’t be stuck with Obama.  Then she gets local.  “At the local level, giving is even more pathetic” she writes, following it with “At some point, true conservatives (like myself) have to realize that if YOU don’t care enough to invest in the future, then we will constantly be on the losing end, which moves us logically to the inevitable honest reflection of our own sacrifices to serve.”

Get it?  The reason she doesn’t have enough money to think that the job is worth the sacrifices she makes is not because the donors disagree with her votes, but because we conservatives are lazy and cheap and don’t properly appreciate her and her sacrifices on our behalf.  Now, doesn’t that just fire you up to grab your checkbook and make a maximum contribution to Gorman for Senate?  You can do so here.

The views expressed are those of the individual writers and not necessarily those of Sonoran Alliance, its founder or editors.

Christmas Is Still A Religious Holiday

Justice of the Peace Gerald WilliamsBy Judge Gerald A. Williams, North Valley Justice of the Peace

Most modern Americans grew up watching Charlie Brown specials during the various holidays. While “The Great Pumpkin” certainly makes for a good story, it is hard to match the meaningful beauty of the Charlie Brown Christmas special.

At the climax of this iconic special, Linus retells the birth of Jesus Christ from the Gospel of Luke. It may be only time many hear those words this year and I cannot help but wonder whether such a cartoon would even be made today.

Oddly, government plays a key role in how religion in general is viewed. Governor Jan Brewer deserves credit for calling Arizona’s Christmas tree, a “Christmas” tree. Our previous governor preferred the term “holiday tree.” Even so, it is usually the judicial branch, not the executive, that is setting the rules in these areas.

The First Amendment reads in part, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . .” Over time, the U.S. Supreme Court has tended to focus more on the “establishment” clause than the “free exercise” clause.

Of note, the Constitution does not contain the phrase that most people believe it does. The actual text says nothing about a “separation between church and state.” That phrase became law in a 1947 case called Everson v. Board of Education.

The Court in Everson ended up holding that tax dollars could be used to provide transportation to students going to church schools as well as public schools. The case because famous for Justice Black’s rhetoric, which stated, “the First Amendment has erected a wall between church and state. That wall must be kept high and impregnable. We could not approve the slightest breach.”

If religious liberty is valued, then government efforts to always avoid anything that looks religious may not always advance that goal. While I am aware of nobody arguing for an official government religion, the size and scope of modern American government agencies have expanded into most aspects of daily life. The unfortunate consequence from that expansion is that religion often gets forced out.

While others have an absolute right to disagree with me, I still believe that Christmas is a religious holiday designed to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. If you hold a different view, I only request that you be as tolerant of my views as you would like me to be of your own. Merry Christmas.

Judge Williams is the presiding justice of the peace for the Northwest Regional Court Center. His column appears monthly in The Foothills Focus.

Brewer running into financial troubles even in campaign

The Arizona Guardian (see below) is reporting that Governor Jan Brewer is struggling to keep up with her primary opponents and assumed Democratic nominee, Terry Goddard, when it comes to raising the seed money under Arizona’s Clean Election system.

Since Brewer officially entered the race on November 5th, she has yet to raise the $51,250 in $140 individual donations according to emails obtained by The Guardian. Gubernatorial candidate, Vernon Parker, was able to secure his seed money in just 41 days while Terry Goddard finished collecting his donations in 32 days.

Those who watch the campaign fundraising race closely will tell you that an inability to raise cash, even in limited small amounts, is an indicator of a lack of confidence among supporters who vote with their dollars. Most campaigns rely on a consultant to conduct most of the fundraising work. In Brewer’s case, Chuck Coughlin’s High Ground is most likely leading the effort to secure the campaign’s seed money.

John Munger, Robert Graham and Owen “Buz” Mills are also in the race as traditionally funded candidates but each has access to personal monies or wealthy donor networks. State Treasurer Dean Martin has yet to determine if he will enter the race but will likely run as a traditional candidate should he enter.

Next year’s gubernatorial race is likely to see upwards of $2-3 Million being spent by each candidate in the General Election.

Arizona Guardian: Brewer struggles to raise campaign cash

Money isn’t the only daunting challenge facing Jan Brewer’s campaign… her highly-paid consultant apparently is preparing for a September primary victory.  I think John Munger, Vernon Parker, Dean Martin, Buz Mills, Robert Graham, Doug Ducey and any other GOP gubernatorial hopeful will be looking to peak a little earlier, say August 24, 2009. 

– MBW

BREWER STRUGGLES TO RAISE CAMPAIGN CASH
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
By Dennis Welch 
The Arizona Guardian 
  
Gov. Jan Brewer isn’t raising money as fast as her political handlers would like and is lagging behind her GOP opponents. 
 
Brewer plans on running as a publicly funded candidate but is allowed to raise up to $50,000 in small contributions, known as seed money, until she qualifies. 
 
The governor’s political advisers were hopeful it would take just a few days to raise the money after Brewer announced on Nov. 5 that she was running for a full term. 
 
But it didn’t turn out that way. As of last week the governor was still chasing after seed money, according to emails obtained by the Guardian
 
Invitations for a Dec. 14th fund-raising event were very clear that the governor still needed donations. Those contributions are capped at $140 per person and $280 per couple. 
 
Chuck Coughlin, the governor’s chief political adviser, would not say whether Brewer has raised the rest of the money since the event last week. 
 
“We will not be playing any horse race games for tomorrow’s headlines,” Coughlin said Tuesday. “They only thing we care about is winning in September and November, of which I am assured.” 
 
It was Coughlin who sent out an email to potential donors that he wanted to wrap up the seed money in several days. That was more than six weeks ago.  
 
“The campaign needs as many $140/$280 contributions… as possible by close of business tomorrow,” Coughlin said in the Nov. 5 email. “It will take many oars in the water on this one but the campaign needs your help today and tomorrow… It would be great if we can knock this out in the next few days.” 
 
A candidate’s ability to raise money is traditionally considered an early test of the candidate’s viability. Brewer suffers from low approval ratings among voters, according to recent polling data.
 
Brewer is trailing her potential political rivals when it comes to raising her seed money. 
 
Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard finished up on Dec. 8, according to volunteers with his campaign. Goddard, who is considered the favorite to win the Democratic nomination for governor, formally announced his candidacy one day after Brewer. 
 
Paradise Valley Mayor Vernon Parker says it took him 41 days to raise his seed money. Parker, a Republican, launched his campaign last summer. 
 
The three candidates are running under the state’s clean elections system which means they will receive public money to pay for their campaigns. But before they can get their cash they must qualify by collecting $5 donations from about 5,000 registered voters. 
 
Once they are eligible, gubernatorial candidates receive about $777,000 for the primary and another $1.1 million for the general election. 
 
Other candidates for governor are not expected to run with public money. John Munger and Owen “Buz” Mills, both Republicans, are running traditional. And state Treasurer Dean Martin, also a Republican, is not expected to run as an clean election candidate should he decide to jump in the race.

JD or not JD? – That is the question

Clueless Grant Woods thinks he has the answer

(Reprinted from Common Sense)

For those of you who live in Rush Limbaugh’s Rio Linda, JD is former Congressman and current KFYI 550 AM conservative, radio talk-show host. Grant Woods is a washed up politician who formerly held the post of Arizona Attorney General.

JD HayworthYou can always tell when a politician is beginning to panic. A leading indicator is a poll that shows them losing ground or trailing another candidate. Not too long ago, Senator John McCain was shown to be out of touch with Arizona and another poll showed him in a statistical dead heat with JD Hayworth, in a bid for the Senate in the 2010 election. This is rather remarkable in-as-much as Hayworth is not even in the race. In fact, his position does not differ dramatically from that of Charlie the mailman who serves the postal route in our neighborhood. Charlie also has not declared his candidacy for the Senate seat, and we doubt he will. However, JD might, and this is why McCain is showing signs of discomfort.

Many seasoned politicians keep a bag of dirty tricks in their closets, that they haul out when the season starts. In a cowardly attempt to ensure they maintain the aura of “Mr. Clean,” they get someone else to do the dirty work for them. Grant Woods is apparently eager to fill that role. He recently filed a complaint with the Federal Elections Commission in Washington, alleging that Mr. Hayworth and his employer, Clear Channel, the owner of KFYI, are violating federal law through in-kind contributions, in a bid to launch JD’s campaign for the US Senate.

It is the nature of talk shows that callers will phone in and suggest that the host ought to run for this office or that. Some of JD’s fans have talked to him about running for governor; others have suggested taking back his seat from Congressman Harry Mitchell, and of course, some believe that JD would make a fine US senator. John McCain has alienated a substantial portion of his natural base by drifting leftward, and no issue separates candidate McCain and non-candidate Hayworth more than illegal immigration. McCain is virtually an icon for immigration reform, (wink-wink) which is just another way of saying: Let’s keep the floodgates open so non-citizens

can destroy our country (McAmnesty). Hayworth has been very critical of McCain and others on this, and wants sealed borders along with strong measures to encourage illegals to pack up and move to their natural homes. This division makes McCain and Hayworth natural political rivals, and sets the stage for a potential battle.

Will JD declare himself a candidate? At this point nobody knows, including Hayworth himself. Political life is not a bed of roses. It exposes anyone who decides to swim in those murky waters to the seedy underside of human behavior. Anything goes, families become fair game, and even non-candidates who are suspected of posing a potential threat become targets. Frequently it is the American people who suffer the most, when the vanguards of special interests prevail. Maybe this time we will get lucky. Keep your fingers crossed and support the candidate who supports us, the little guys. One thing is sure. Whatever feud simmered between Grant Woods and John McCain for almost two decades has been put aside in their mutual political panic concerning the popularity of JD Hayworth with the Republican Base in Arizona.

That’s a small miracle at this special time of year-and in its own strange way, makes Hayworth a uniter, not a divider!