The countdown for candidates filing with the Election Services starts April 26th and the last day to file is at 5 p.m. on May 26. With this deadline in mind…one starts to think about the candidates running and who should “fold” up shop and decide where to shift their support to, etc.
John McCain has been losing his political foothold in Arizona since January of this year. He picked up 53% of the potential GOP Primary vote at that point, whereas Hayworth had about 31% support. Now THESE TWO are so close in percentages that it could go either way. On April 16th Rasmussen telephone polls reported McCain at 47% and Hayworth at 42%; realistically thats within the margin of error. Two percent (2%) of that same poll preferred some other candidate, and eight percent (8%) were undecided. I’m assuming that the 2% who preferred another candidate were supporting Jim Deakin, aka the “other JD” and the self designated “Tea Party Candidate”.
Results of a GOP Straw Poll performed on January 16 had shown that Jim Deakin was leading all registered candidates and a subsequent press release claimed that he “was in a great position to perform probably the biggest upset in Arizona politics”. It is now April 26th and most non-politically active voters that I have talked to have still never heard of Deakin or the groups that have officially endorsed him. They have however heard of JD Hayworth and John McCain.
In a January press release it was stated that “Many Americans feel politicians have lost touch with the people. Jim Deakin’s real world experience has earned him the support of TEA Party groups, 912candidates.org and TheGoodEggClub.com and thetenthamendmentcenter.com.” It’s important to know that at that time, no official Arizona based Tea Party organizations were supporting or endorsing candidates. Most could not legally do so. It wasn’t until February that a Tea Party group officially announced their support for one of the Senate candidates. That joint endorsement came from Liberty First PAC, TaxDayTeaParty.com, The Patriot Caucus, The American Liberty Alliance, and Asheville Tea Party….and that announcement was in support of JD Hayworth.
As the reports have said, Deakin has exceeded the signature requirement listed on the Secretary of State’s website and will be included on the August 24, 2010 ballot. Will this be a good or bad thing for John McCain and JD Hayworth? The answer is – bad for Hayworth because in a race as close as this, Deakin will cost Hayworth some much needed votes. Only McCain wins if Deakin persists forward. McCain has a very long political history in Arizona and he has lots of campaign experience…and money. And most importantly – he is nationally recognizable. Can Deakin realistically compete against the McCain legacy and win?
Deakin is a great candidate in theory…but he has zero real life political experience and zero chances of beating McCain. He lacks the financial contributions and campaign resources needed to defeat McCain. It’s difficult to do, but we all have take off our “favorite candidate goggles” and look at the big picture. That goal should be defeating John McCain. The question must be asked then, why doesn’t Deakin realize the gravity of the situation, fold up shop and help Hayworth (who is the real front runner) get rid of our do-nothing incumbent? Only Deakin can answer that question. As a candidate, when unbiased poll numbers illustrate that you aren’t breaking double digits; one would have to wonder what the point of continuing on is all about. At this point in the game Jim Deakin could very well be unintentionally enabling McCain in holding onto the Senate seat. If Deakin continues to push forward in this race and costs the Arizona conservative movement the opportunity to remove our non-representing incumbent, his name will undoubtably be held in ill repute for many years to come.
As the Chair of the Arizona Patriot Caucus, I am openly and publicly urging Jim Deakin to pursue the proper course of action and drop out of THIS race and wait to fight another day. It is no surprise to many that I am supporting JD Hayworth and it is my view that Deakin cannot possibly win a primary against McCain. If Deakin really wants to help Arizona for the right reasons he should unite behind JD Hayworth; a candidate that can realistically go up against a deeply rooted and well funded political machine like John McCain…and potentially win.