Shadegg Replacement Roundup

This post will attempt to analyze the prospective challengers in the race to replace John Shadegg in CD3, and will hopefully serve as an interesting forum for discussion. I am only including people who might really run, not just people who are involved in politics and live in the confines of the 3rd district.

First the top three:

Jim Waring

Jim’s greatest advantage will be the sheer number of voters that he has already met. Scuttle has it that he had personally collected over 2,000 signatures for his expected 2008 Senate re-election. His yearly total of door contacts has been estimated to be in the neighborhood of 4,000 voters. Add to that his sponsorship of popular and attention getting bills, from legislation battling DUI and domestic violence to supporting veteran’s services. Waring is also no slouch when it comes to fundraising; he has over $100,000 in the bank (though none can be used in a Congressional race).

His head start (having personally met more voters over the past 6 years than his opponents will in the entire campaign), fundraising ability, and tremendous work ethic will make him the candidate to beat.

Waring is expected to announce soon and resign his Senate seat to campaign full time.

Sean Noble

Shadegg’s Chief of Staff, he has been with the Congressman since the beginning. He’s considered one of the best campaign operatives in GOP circles, but I’m not 100% sure why. He managed the losing end of the most lopsided governor’s race in Arizona history. Nathan Sproul is rumored to be running his campaign, which would be fine if his were the only name on the ballot. On the plus side, Sean is a handsome guy with a beautiful young family. He clearly knows the district and the issues. If Shadegg were to endorse and go to the mat for him, he would raise serious money. The question is how he supports such a big family while running the kind of campaign it would take for him to win.

Noble’s knowledge of the district, including the donor and volunteer lists of his boss, make him a top three candidate.

Dean Martin

I can’t believe he’s doing it, but his rumored candidacy just will not die. Dean is a statewide elected official, the Treasurer for only one year. He would have to resign merely to compete in a crowded primary. Dean would also probably forgo any chance of running for governor in 2010, in which an other presumptive front runner, County Attorney Andrew Thomas, has done everything humanly possible to minimize his chances of winning.

One thing I have always liked about Dean, and what makes him unique, is that he is not remotely risk averse. In 2000, he took on an incumbent state senator, Sue Grace, who retired rather than face him. With a week to go before the filing deadling, Tom Horne, the longtime state representative and school board member, told him “Thanks for chasing Sue out. Now I will run for the senate and you will run for my house seat.” At age 25, Dean took on a well funded (before Clean Elections) longtime legislator rather than accept an uncontested race for the House. That is gutsy!

His name is Dean Martin, and he can probably raise some decent money (and he’s the type who wouldn’t hesitate to spend whatever personal money he has). He also smartly positioned himself as the head of the Arizona Fair Tax organization, which includes thousands of members (many of them well heeled); this could bring some national money into play, as it did for Mike Huckabee.

The rest:

Ed Winkler

The Mayor of Paradise Valley is expected to announce his candidacy tonight. Presumably he can raise some money, as the mayor of Arizona’s toniest city. Does anyone know anything else about him? Being mayor of a small town that is synonymous with excessive wealth is probably not the best platform for launching a Federal campaign. I’d be curious to learn more about where he stands on the issues, and how he intends to differentiate himself from the pack.

Money is his only discernable potential advantage, and with at least three contenders poised to raise serious bucks, I don’t give him much of a chance.

Pam Gorman

The Pam of 2004 would have been formidable; a young, attractive Christian Conservative soccer Mom. Beating Clancy Jayne and Ted Carpenter is probably not the kind of experience that prepares you for a race like this. Her alliance with Chris Baker, who I consider one of the finest and most underrated consultants in Arizona would undoubtedly help her (never forget what an upset Trent Franks’ 2002 victory was). Additionally, candidates managed by Baker seem to magically meet the criteria necessary to get money from the Club for Growth.

Does she know the issues? Would she do the work? Much better to stay in the Senate.

Peggy Neely

Yawn. Too liberal. She would have to resign, and would quickly thereafter find out how many donors would be knocking down her door (none). Rezoning dirt for developers is probably not the record you’d want to run on, and her 100,000,000 giveaway for City North makes me sick.

Jordan Rose

Rezoning dirt for big developers (from the other side of the table) is probably not the right platform for making this race. She has tremendous personal wealth, but Waring, Noble, Martin, and perhaps Winkler will be spending enough money to win.

Supervisor Andy Kunasek has taken himself out of the race, as has former state Representative Deb Gullet. Phil Gordon isn’t going to pull the trigger, as running would require him to give up his office, though I would love the primary fight between him and Bob Lord.

Who am I leaving out? What candidate strengths and weaknesses am I missing?

As a parting thought, everyone needs to stop freaking out. Yes, Bob Lord has 500k cash on hand. He has also blown 100k, an indication of how he will spend our money in Congress. People report that he’s awkward, he won’t knock like he needs to, and has spent his career as a tax attorney. The Republican advantage is the same as in CD 5, and it took no less than the perfet storm of candidate Harry Mitchell, running in 2006, AGAINST JD Hayworth to barely eke out a win. We are going to keep this seat, especially with John McCain at the top of the ticket.


  1. Antifederalist says

    Waring is a McCain stooge who has defended his former boss at every turn. No real small-government conservative should trust him.

  2. Why? Because he voted against the bloated state budget in his first term, or because he sponsored the biggest tax cut in Arizona history?

  3. Hey Publius, why do you think Andrew Thomas is shooting himself in the foot for a possible race for Gov?

    Just curious to get a Republican standpoint, but as a Democrat I notice how he’s getting his name out there. Not sure yet if his strategy has been a good idea or not, though…

  4. kralmajales says

    Martin is yooooooouuuuuuuuunnnnnnnng. All good, I like the younger generation, but can he really beat Lord? You mentioned money, where did he get his?

  5. W Phx Activist says

    What about Hatch Miller going back to his home district instead of the uphill battle against Schweikert. He would immediately attract some money in CD3 that will not be there in CD5 for him. In addition that is where he has done the community work and was a legislator.

  6. You all are forgetting Barbara Leff. A capable woman candidate who raises tons of money and is close with both Shadegg and Kyl. A conservative voting record and, unlike Dean Martin, I don’t think she voted for spending our tax dollars on a dumb convention center!

  7. Martin doesn’t deserve the praise you are giving him. He would stab you in the back and climb over your still warm corpse if it meant he would benefit in some way.

    Waring is the man to watch.

  8. Scrupulous, exhumed says

    Noble owns the district: history, ideas, relationships, understanding, infrastructure, funding, and an endorsement from Shadegg, no? The others may be good or not so good conservatives, with a lot to learn about Congress. Noble is the natural successor to Shadegg, and with a few bucks for advertising he can overcome his relative anonymity. John just needs to donate his war chest to Sean! And if Sean’s been able to do his job so very successfully and have a family as well, he’s probably got his priorities straight and would do the same as a Congressman.

  9. Party Worker says

    Noble is locked at the hip with Nathan Sproul, thus JM. The last couple of years they were Siamese twins. Not a good idea for conservative values.

  10. Get over it already! Sean has never done anything “not good for conservative values”. This idea that all people are zombies and can’t have an authentic idea unles it is vetted and fully approved by others is beyond ridiculous.

    Maybe that is how some people in your world, or even you, operate, so you paint all with the same brush. Sean Noble is not anyones pawn, he has a very real and worthy sense of duty and a clear vision for conservatism at its best. To say he is anything less than that is to say that John Shadegg would have allowed a compromise on principle.

    If old grudges and half-baked arguments over who is and who isn’t a “true conservative” gets you anywhere, keep it up. However, it looks to me like real people, with real lives, and who really vote have said enough of this garbage. Let’s get about the business of government and get over your petty pity party.

  11. Hey, guys. I defer to all of you when it comes to the Republican field, but I didn’t see the name of Jim Weiers in this rundown.

    He’s been mentioned by the Great Mentioner (of Russell Baker fame).

    What don’t I know? Ok, what don’t I know about CD3? Otherwise the list would be infinite.

  12. Jim Weiers was just listed as one of the top 5 as possibles on Channel 12 news and I’ve read it on other sites as well.

  13. Shadegg cannot “give” someone his warchest. Noble will have to raise the money himself. Sure, his connection to Sproul is of concern because it would be nice to have a Congressional delegation what works with, instead of against, the state party. But if Sproul helps Noble raise money like he’s helped Knaperek, then we probably don’t need to worry about it.

  14. Well said, Ann!

    OTOH, though, when is the last time a COS actually succeeded his/her boss around here?

  15. nightcrawler says

    Martin is the sleeper. He has shown himself to be quite adaptable. He is young and is quite conservative, not a combo we see much of these days. As corny as it may seem, the name, Dean Martin really does help with the casual voter.

    If he does indeed decide to throw his hat in the ring, I believe he can take the primary and the general.

  16. ld6grassroot says

    No question Martin is THE most electable of all the names put forth. My biggest problem with Martin running for CD-3 is the talent drain we would have in the Treasurer’s office. He was elected to do a lot of good there and is living up to that role. I’d hate to lose that real progress this soon. Martin “walks the walk” on the promise of effective conservative government.

  17. Sandy Faygubla says


  18. Some of you have unfortunately been drinking the Martin Kool-Aid. Many others on this list are far better. Mark my words, Martin won’t run; he know he wouldn’t stand a chance. He will continue to “clean up” the Treasurer’s office. Heaven knows he certainly could use the exercise.

  19. Martin has done some admirable work as Treasurer. He should stay there and ripen on the vine. And while he’s at it, give time for any improprieties, or appearance of such, to be properly disposed.

    Jan Brewer does not live in CD 3 and despite the rules, she would probably not want the baggage.

    Weiers barely made it out of the general and had some guns lines up at him again. Quelland is running again, Jackie Thrasher is very well liked. Who goes under the bus this time? Maybe Weiers will hedge his bet and go for it.

    He would lose against Waring or Noble. Both of them are very personable and can carry a crowd. The “Speaker” is not a good one (pun folks not an editorial comment).

    I would hope that there would be some thought about this at the state level. We do not need a nasty primary given the many seats we must work on. A single shot in the primary to avoid a duplicate effort and a clean shot at the Dem.

    Look at CD 5, the back and forth between the factions within the R’s is doing the work of Mr. Mitchell while he raises money and appears statesmanlike.

  20. ld6grassroot says

    azslim, I see you have a history of apologizing for your ridiculous statements on this site. Otherwise, your post here is not worthy of comment.

  21. ld6grassroot said “azslim, I see you have a history of apologizing for your ridiculous statements on this site. Otherwise, your post here is not worthy of comment.”

    Right…and that’s why you commented on it.


    btw, no apology will be forthcoming either.

  22. Antifederalist says

    In response to your ad hominem attack on Dean, you’re a dolt. Unlike Rob Haney who has a real case against McCain, you’re more like Quixote tilting at windmills. You’re all sound and fury, signifying nothing. There’s no basis to all your claims. AT BEST, you make a case for the APPEARANCE of impropriety, but guess what, mister lawman, that ain’t enough to be illegal.

    No individual who will defend the RINO John McCain at every turn can be conservative, voting record notwithstanding. It’s like confessing Jesus with your mouth and denying him with your actions. There’s soemthing inconsistent in his actions that shows Waring is not to be trusted. How long will it be before McCain calls up Waring and asks Waring to vote McCain’s way on an issue that will be a betrayal of small-government conservatives?

  23. here’s another name some people are mentioning: David Kolbe. He’s Jim Kolbe’s nephew, John Kolbe’s son and was legislative director for Rep Lamar Smith of Texas. he hasn’t been doing much in politics but has been active in community stuff. He could probably self-finance a big chunk of the race, but who knows anything about him?

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