Why Len Munsil will be the next Governor of Arizona

In addition to the simple registration edge that Republicans hold over Democrats (see numbers), here are the ten reasons why I believe Len Munsil will be the next Governor of Arizona.

1) No spoiler on the ballot – Dick Mahoney is gone and will not have a chance to take shots at the Republican and suck votes away from the GOP this year.

2) The Marriage Amendment is on the ballot. Len was strongly behind the effort to get this on the ballot. This will drive conservatives and others who support traditional marriage to vote on election day. These voters are likely to be Len’s people.

3) Unlike in 2002, Jim Pederson is not throwing millions of his own dollars into the Democratic Party apparatus to give Janet Napolitano a boost. He has his hands full with his own race.

4) Len is underestimated and this will cause Janet to take the race for granted.

5) Len is running a much stronger campaign than Matt Salmon did in 2002. He has a much broader network and support system than Salmon did which consisted primarily of the East Valley. Len’s support is statewide and his network in Pima County is extensive. If you look at the win in LD 26, you will see a demographic switch in that county unlike in 2002.

6) Len is a terrific debater and will hold his own or even dance circles around Janet. Len is an attorney with a background in journalism and public policy. This will catch Janet off guard and those who have not made up their mind by the time they watch the debates will move into Len’s camp.

7) The voters want someone they can relate to. Janet Napolitano’s crowd consists of Mercury and Arizona Opera fans, Democratic activists and union leaders. Len’s core base consists of families, the business community, and conservative people of faith. Len’s network is much wider and deeper.

8) Janet Napolitano has vetoed more legislation than any other Arizona Governor. Janet Napolitano has earned the title of “Governor No.” This falls into line with the impression that she has no vision for the state other than to be an obstructionists. The people want a governor of action and the only action that Janet Napolitano has been able to demonstrate is that of standing in the way. Six of our eight Congressmen are conservative. Our two U.S. Senators are for the most part conservative. Our State House and State Senate are conservative Republicans. The state is trending conservative especially as clean elections allows the grassroots to elect more conservatives. Arizonans want to elect someone who will move the state forward not stand in the way. Len Munsil can make this argument by presenting a vision of progress and production.

9) Len Munsil is right on the issues. The majority of Arizonans support the issues the Len Munsil believes in. This includes strengthening families, strengthening the economy and protecting the rights of Arizonans. Len Munsil and Bill Montgomery’s Border Security Plan will stand as a pillar of this certainty and fortitude to many voters. Janet Napolitano and Terry Goddard have no plan other than to declare a state of emergency and blame it on President Bush and the federal government.

10) Finally, Len will present a clear and convincing vision for the State of Arizona. Over the last 3.5 years. Janet has provided no vision. She has never communicated where she wants to see Arizona in five or ten years. She is essentially a “checklist politician” meaning she can only list a handful of things she wants to do. Governing is more than writing checklists. As a woman without a family, she reinforces an underlying impression that she cannot relate to families and she offers a barren vision of things to come. Voters long for a sense of community and want to feel that their fellow Arizonans are part of a team. Janet is unable to do that because her personal life is a dead end. When Ronald Reagan ran for President, he presented a vision of the future that Americans bought into. They saw themselves as part of a broader team. Len Munsil can successfully present a vision because he has a family and this ties him to a future that is bigger than him or any of us. The voters want a leader who will cast and share that vision for all Arizonans. I believe Len can do that and it is for these reasons that I believe he will be the next Governor.


  1. Sonoran Truth Squad says

    Wow, you have way too much time on your hands… I like parts of the list (well the whole list, but I agree with parts of the list) as regards Len being a good debater, etc. But there are some areas of disagreement…
    1. Barry Hess is back as a spoiler, allowing disenchanted fools the opportunity to vote Libertarian. He won’t draw any votes from Janet. All of his votes will come from Len.
    2. Jim Pederson is still throwing millions at us, albeit through his own Senate race. He will actually spend MORE in 2006 than he did in 2002 and you can be sure that turning out Dems and left-leaning Independents will be the goal.
    3. Len is not running a much stronger race than Salmon did. Salmon had a better team, more experience, a longer campaign, and several times the money.
    4. Voters automatically feel they can relate to someone who has been their governor for four years. That is why being the incumbent is such an advantage. Len has to convince them (in the next four weeks) that they actually don’t like their Governor while simultaneously introducing himself as a viable alternative, all on a very small budget.
    5. Six of our eight Congressmen are not conservative. And we must recognize that our success at turning the legislature rightward was earned in primaries, not general elections. Everyone knows that general voters are more moderate than primary voters.
    6. The majority of general election voters in Arizona still have no idea who or what Len Munsil is. That was where the Goldwater name was potentially a great equalizer. Munsil will have to spend just to introduce himself while Janet and the media beat the stuffing out of him. It isn’t a fair fight, but it is predictable…

    Still, we’ll be all better off if you’re right and he wins!

  2. Gretchen Wagenseller says

    Munsil is either ignorant or pandering.

    Munsil said he is going to accelerate highway construction YET, according to what he indicated on the Project Vote Smart questionnaire, he wants to “eliminate” capital gains taxes, “slightly decrease” gasoline taxes, “greatly decrease” all other taxes [except maintain cigarette and alcohol taxes]–HOW IS HE GOING TO PAY FOR THE ACCELERATION OF HIGHWAY CONSTRUCTION?


  3. Oro Valley Dad says

    I keep hearing that Len Munsil will beat Janet in a debate. So what? If debate skills mattered then we would currently live under President Kerry. The fact is doesn’t matter who wins of losses a debate. It matters who connects with the voters that happen to be watching the event that night.

  4. Sheesh, Gretchen — Libs have excelled at funny money govt schemes for years. Accelerating highway construction is a fairly easy thing.

    But a few related points:

    1. Raising tax rates is not the only way to raise tax revenue — frequently it does the opposite.

    2. Accelerating one govt. program does not require that all others be held the same or get an increase in funding. This is a standard Demo scare tactic.

    3. Highway construction is funded via bonds. The state is paying to complete the highway now, but borrowing the money and paying it off in chunks. Len is betting that the increased productivity in the state (i.e. higher tax revenue) will more than pay for the bonds over the years.

    Unlike the majority of proposals coming from the 9th floor over the last 4 years, this one has a chance of providing returns in the future.

  5. Randall Holdridge says

    I’m still trying to figure out who the two real conservatives in the Arizona congressional delegation are?

  6. Randall Holdridge says

    Thanks for the link, Shane, but I thought maybe the Sonoran Truth Squad would be brave enough to name names, even in an era of curbed free speech.

  7. Depending on your definition of a conservative, you can find out at: The American Conservative Union Rating website: http://www.acuratings.org/2005all.htm#AZ

  8. Sonoran Truth Squad says

    Sorry it took so long, but its nice to be missed!

    Shane said that 6 of our 8 Congressmen were conservatives. Since Grijalva and Pastor couldn’t possibly be in the mix, I assumed he was treating all 6 Republicans as conservative. I disagreed, saying that “6 of 8 are not conservative” as my way of disagreeing with his statement that 6 of 8 were. I can see where Randall would read that as my saying that 2 of 8 are…

    That said, since I’ve been asked to name names, I’ll start a whole new debate here and say that Franks is a conservative, as is Shadegg. You could count Flake if you ignore the border, Hayworth if you put aside a few of his spending votes (wouldn’t have to be too many, but a few would help), and maybe even Renzi under the same conditions as Hayworth. Renzi has provided for his district and it has won him loyalty, much as Hayworth did early in his career. It might be a neccesary evil, but it does screw up an otherwise solid conservative record.

    By any measure, Grijalva, Pastor, and Kolbe are not conservative…

    So there you have it… 2 if you’re very very picky, and 5 if a score of 95% is good enough for you… It is for me…!

    I say 5…

  9. Randall Holdridge says

    So, we’ve got Franks and Shadegg as conservatives. I moved to Arizona originally (in 1965) because I admired Barry Goldwater, and by those lights, I’d say that Jeff Flake is Arizona’s last congressional conservative.

  10. Goldwater was an ultra lib who did not get 40 % of the vote in 64. And dont give me that Kennedy sympathy BS. Check out the promo for Goldwater’s bio on HBO tonight. The stars are Hillary Clinton, Walter Kronkite, and Helen Thomas. I am glad to say i will not watch that show !!!

  11. Like 2002, J-no will campaign as a “Goldwater” Republican. And her handlers will hide her every chance they get. However, this time it might not work b/c of her anti-family voting/veto record. If Munsil makes that known it will be very very close…

  12. Here’s a thought…

    You think people dont know Munsil, but I bet most Arizonan’s dont even know what our governor looks like????

    I bet if you put her pick up and took a poll here in AZ at least 1/3% of the our people have NO idea who she is!!!

  13. Lauren Haley says

    Has Janet ever been seen wearing a dress? What about an evening dress? You should have a contest to see if anyone can find a photo of her wearing a dress. Sure she wears business skirts but I haven’t seen her in anything but a business suit or a pair of “mom’s jeans.”  http://photos1.blogger.com/blogger/7580/1141/1600/napolitano.0.jpg

  14. Lauren – your post reminds me about an artical I read here about how Scottsdale is now catering to …

    never mind, I dont want to be deleted…

  15. Randall Holdridge says

    Golly, Eph and Lauren Haley don’t really sound like people who give money to support the central structures of the Republican Party. Rather they sound like outsiders allowed to attend a rally now and then, who believe they can drive the Grand Old Party back into the (one would have thought thoroughly discredited) McCarthy-Red Scare days, despite the return of the GOP to the Gilded Age, as if Teddy Roosevelt and Barry Goldwater had never existed.

    The billionaires and their lesser satellites, the multi-millionaires, will milk them for all they’re worth, and still they’ll sputter in outrage as if the homosexuals were going to take over the country and run it as a sex farm any day now.

    Pure D suckers. They believe they’re patriots, but they haven’t an intelligently patriotic bone in their bodies. Land of the free, home of the brave? They couldn’t care less.

  16. There Randell goes name-calling again. That’s a surprise! When libs can’t win the argument; they call people names.

    Now onto the post, Sonoran Alliance guy or gal-

    Some of your analysis is just wishful thinking. First of all, Berry Hess might play a bigger spoiler roll this time around because of the Protect Marriage Arizona Amendment (PMA). This is one of those things that really gets to social libertarians, and social issues are one of the reasons that I cannot be a Libertarian. But at the same time, PMA could definitely help Len if churches turn their people out, and all previous evidence from other states shows that they will. You mentioned DICK Mahoney. But where DICK Mahoney may have taken away from Matt Salmon, he was also a former Secretary of State as a Democrat, so he likely took away from both candidates. Berry Hess will almost exclusively poach voters away from the Republican column this time around. Remember that Hess is extremely pro-life. He told me recently how he believed that abortion was absolutely barbaric.

    I also have to agree with Sonoran Truth Squad that it is yet to be seen how Len could be running a better campaign than Matt Salmon did. Matt Salmon beat his Primary opposition 56% to 29.7% to 14.3%. Salmon had 174,055 votes to Betsey Bayless’ 92,473. Four years later, Len Munsil received 50.6% or 154,555 votes to Don Goldwater’s 39.6% or 120,970 votes. So, Munsil comes into the General with much smaller name ID and 20,000 votes behind where Matt Salmon was at this point 4 years ago. Salmon came down to Tucson over 100 times while campaigning, and Salmon knew not just public policy but knew how to campaign, since he had done so before many times. Len has missed a number of important campaign events. All Republican candidates were here in Tucson on the Wednesday morning after the Primary for the statewide kick-off; everybody except Len Munsil that is. Munsil also missed the debate early on sponsored by the Pima County Republican Party. And he has missed a number of other events statewide as well. And Republicans don’t forget that kind of thing. If a candidate misses somebody’s event, the person or people who put that event together are going to be less likely to work that much harder for a candidate. Munsil needs to be at these events, since his name ID is still very low. It also doesn’t help that he started campaigning so late.

    I also don’t believe that Pederson’s money will be an issue. Some people say that Napolitano and Pederson had some kind of a falling out; I’m not so sure that’s true. But I’ve heard that through the grapevine.

    Salmon beat Napolitano in the debates, his only negative being when he tried to sell the voters on his statewide senior prescription drug plan, which he obviously did not believe in, and most Republican voters hated anyway. The debates last time were basically Salmon and Hess tag-teaming Janet for being a socialist, and DICK Mahoney spewing hatred against Mormons, which Salmon by “coincidence” happened to be one, so he was the obvious target. Len is obviously not a Mormon, so anti-LDS bigotry won’t be a factor this time around. But some people might be afraid that Len is some kind of religious zealot.

    I do think that Munsil will be a better debater than Janet, but that’s more because Napolitano hardly knows how to put a sentence together than anything other reason.

    I do not think that Janet will be taking this race for granted or that she will be underestimating Munsil. If you sucked as bad at life and politics as she does, you can’t take anything for granted. Plus, if you haven’t seen her new ad, it is by far the best ad that I’ve seen this election cycle, with the only ad coming close being Randy Graf’s “The Door” ad with the little girl.

    And you are wrong, all 8 Republicans in Arizona’s Congressional Delegation ARE NOT Conservatives. I count to “one” “Uno” “1” Conservative, then I must stop. I don’t even have to go into why Trent Franks is the only true conservative in the Arizona Congressional delegation. But I will. The others: Shadegg, Hayworth, Renzi, Flake, Kyl, and McCain all have areas where they must improve. Shadegg tried to beg Kolbe to stay in Congress, and Jim Kolbe is an extremist liberal who was one of only 6 Repulican to vote against the ban on partial-birth abortion. Shadegg was also quoted months back saying how he thought Randy Graf might be “too conservative” to win the district. A true conservative would never say this about a fellow conservative in a majority Republican district. Trent Franks is the only one who consistently matches his conservative words with conservative actions. Hence, Franks, as a conservative, endorsed of Randy Graf in the Republican Primary in CD8. Franks was the only member of the Congressional delegation to do so. And this was not because members of the delegation were all opposed to endorsing, since Renzi, Flake, Shadegg, and Franks all endorsed Munsil in the Primary. With Hayworth, he talks like he’s strong on the border, but he doesn’t back that up with actions. He didn’t endorse Graf in the Primary, and he was opposed to Prop 200 in 2004. Senator Jon Kyl comes close to being a Conservative, pretty dang close. He is one of the “Best Senators in America” as “Time” said. But he also voted to give China Most Favored Nation trade status. Renzi is kind of Conservative, some of the time. Flake is awesome and amazing and great on every conservative issue, except TWO of the most important- illegal immigration and trade. McCain- well he’s McCain. You’ve gotta love him for that!

  17. Randall Holdridge says

    Prop 206 is Cancer believes that Conservatism is the same thing as dictating personal conduct in family and personal relations according to some standards of his. He believes it’s about casting doubt over the legitimate presence of Latinos in North America.

    If you don’t agree with him, you’re a liberal, a name caller, or both.

    I thought this was a Republican site; perhaps I erred?

  18. Oro Valley Dad says

    It is a pro-life conservative site. Sometimes that corresponds with Republicans and sometimes it does not.

  19. Randall Holdridge says

    Sonoran Truth Squad exaggerated; there aren’t two conservatives in Ariona’s congressional delegation, or five, as the case was amended. There is ONE, and one only, sez Prop 206 is Cancer. Narrow is the gate, by golly, and only Trent Franks walks through to the land of the blessed. Makes the Republican Party seem less like a tent than an umbrella.

    I think he’s hinting that he’s let Randy Graf in. This is the candidate the national party tried to eliminate in the primary, and to whom they now give $20K, and a warning not to lose rather than an endorsement.

    Of course the party makes a vague promise of another $100K at some future time; if it ever appears, that would bring the party support for Graf almost to the level of what the party has already been spent trying to stop him.

    Oh, but look how smart Prop 206 is cancer is; he’s a brilliant authority on the best interests of the Republican Party.

  20. Randall Holdridge says

    Oro Valley Dad,

    To link “pro-life” and “conservative” as though they were automatically compatible seems like an ‘ancien regime’ view. Are you a monarchist as well? Advocate of a state religion? Champion of sedition laws and regulator of free speech? Enemy of English common law?

  21. Randall,

    Welcome to the first day of Republican Politics 101. Pencils out, take notes: 1) the Republican Platform is pro-life and conservative (limited government, less taxes, recognition of founding traditions and principles as still current and still relevant). We may fight over which aspects of our platform are given their due on any given day, but that’s family business.

    If you want to take issue with the platform, go ahead. That’s what Free Speech is all about. Just don’t try and pretend the Republican Party is something else until the platform is changed. However, I think we’re more likely to see Ronald Reagan run for a third term before the Republican Party forgets what made us who we are.

  22. Sonoran Truth Squad says

    Man, I was only gone a short while and we went from 8 to 21? Nice…

    Did anyone notice this?

    Randall Holdridge Says:
    September 19th, 2006 at 5:46 am
    Sonoran Truth Squad exaggerated; there aren’t two conservatives in Ariona’s congressional delegation, or five, as the case was amended. There is ONE, and one only, sez Prop 206 is Cancer. Narrow is the gate, by golly, and only Trent Franks walks through to the land of the blessed. Makes the Republican Party seem less like a tent than an umbrella.

    Seems like Randall is whacking Prop206 for being so rigid that only one Congressman makes the grade. Yet when I read #9, I see the following from Randall himself:

    “I’d say that Jeff Flake is Arizona’s last congressional conservative.”

    Hmm… Only one makes the grade… Guess Randall’s in the umbrella business as well?

    As for his last post, there isn’t anything automatic about linking pro-life and conservative. They don’t automatically go together. But you asked what kind of a site this was and now you know… Its primarily for pro-life conservatives. Nothing there for you to get upset at, yet you seemed to take it badly… Perhaps tolerance training is in your future?

  23. Oro Valley Dad says


    You asked a question, I answered it.

    I don’t understand from where you got all your non sequiturs.

  24. Seems to me that there is some diversity – that being between traditional libertarian conservatives and neoconservatives. That’s OK with me as long as we all agree that the role of government is to protect our rights to life, liberty and property (and of course, the pursuit of happiness). Sure, that sounds pie in the sky but we all have to agree on some basic fundamentals if we intend to hold on to this Republic.

  25. Randell-

    I’m glad that I can be your target of insults now. I know that I can take it. I’m not sure that Eph and Lauren Haley were expecting to receive your vitriol and be the brunt of you displaying your God Complex over them. When I said that libs can’t argue anything without name-calling, maybe I should have reminded you and the rest of the posters here that you were the one who when talking about Eph and Lauren Haley said that: “they haven’t an intelligently patriotic bone in their bodies.” So, in your argument that I am not qualified to decide what constitutes a Conservative, you also at the same exact time go ahead and decide what constitutes being both patriotic and intelligent. Now, I freely admit that Conservative can be different depending on the definition, and that liberal, conservative, and moderate are only subjective titles or descriptors that can change over time or instantly and depending on context. But I also admit that patriotic and intelligent can be defined pretty easily and are two things that don’t change over time. I would not question your patriotism, because I do not know you. Your intelligence, on the other hand, is probably questioned automatically when anyone spends a half a second contemplating the simple hypocrisy and sophomoric nature of your ability to make a sound argument. I feel bad for you actually. I would have guessed that you were some punk teenager, but you stated that you moved to Arizona in 1965, so it is sad to me that you still display these kinds of characteristics at least into your 40s.

    Then you play the race card to show that you really must have suffered through some kind of an accident that left your brain half-impaired or that you were just born dumb. I do hate to be so blunt, but maybe you should look at anything that I have written before you say anything as idiotic as that I believe that being conservative is “about casting doubt over the legitimate presence of Latinos in North America.” I don’t even think that I once mentioned a position of my own in regard to immigration (which I’m guessing is the issue to which you are referring). Randell, by the way, I do find illegal immigration to be important, but it is not my issue and happens to be pretty far down on the list of what I consider to be important conservative values. Abortion is the defining issue of our time, and abolishing this reprehensible practice is the defining characteristic of what makes us human and not animals, what makes us human and not barbaric, and what defines what I consider to be a modern-day conservative. Yet, I fully admit that conservatives and liberals can agree on many issues, including abortion, and once again what is conservative today can be seen as liberal tomorrow.

    Conservative is more of a movement right now. Thus the definition of conservative will constantly change and morph into other things. I personally believe that a big part of being a Conservative is a strong and unmoving belief in fighting for human rights and human dignity. Liberals say that they believe this too, and as long as they are not pro-abortion, I’m willing to believe that they might be sincere when they say they fight for these things. Conservatives and liberals often shoot for the same goal, yet can happen for competing and opposing positions. The idea that the political spectrum is linear is far too simplistic. The political spectrum is often circular or even three dimensional and can change depending on individual issues. There are morons, and I assume that you are one of them, Randell, who believe that Fascism is on the far right side of the political spectrum where communism is on the far left, and Republicans are clsoser to fascists, while Democrats are closer to communists. This theory is ridiculous and unfounded. There are many areas of agreement with the American left and government control which was so prevalent in Nazi Germany.

    Now, Randell, also gets to decide the Oro Valley Dad is really a monarchist based upon the fact that Oro Valley Dad thinks conservatives must be pro-life. This may be the most nonsensical leap that you’ve made yet. Let’s see: Pro-life = Conservative = Wants a King or a Queen. I see. Randell, you have betrayed what to us what you do for a living. You must be a rocket scientist.

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