Kolbe still engaged in Republican politics.

     Ted over at RRR got all in a lather about our reaction to the story that former Congressman Jim Kolbe has backed out from his position as co-chairman of the Tim Bee campaign. Everyone else in the state covered the story. We chose not to because we had nothing to add. The news even made Politico and The Hill. We would like to correct one of the comments in Ted’s story. Rex is mistaken. We DO NOT hate Kolbe. Quite the opposite. While we disagree with him on almost every issue we find it very entertaining to have him in the Republican Party.

     For all concerned that Kolbe will be fading from the spotlight, fear not! He is still politically active and will in fact be hosting a fundraiser for Pete Hershberger this Thursday evening at Sam Hughes Place. Don’t miss what is sure to be a fun time.


  1. Oh man, looking at those pictures convinces me that there is something in the Southern Arizona water. Wasn’t there a song, something to the effect of “Where have all the real men gone?”

    I suppose you still produce the occasional Randy Graf and Al Melvin, but wow, seriously… What is going on down there?

  2. Dude, gay-bashing is so 2004. Get a life you pathetic excuse for a childish homophobic moron. You’re right. There is something going on in So Az… we’re rejecting your backwards Puritan gay-hating agenda that is clearly so widely embraced wherever you are from.

  3. Christopher Street says

    In an act of Politicus Interruptus, former Congressman Kolbe has pulled his support of Tim Bee’s candidacy in Congressional District 8. This now leaves only one high profile candidate with Kolbe’s endorsement – Jim Ogsbury, Republican lobbyist running in Congressional District 5. Now that Kolbe has thrown his weight behind Ogsbury, Susan Bitter Smith stands to lose the most due to the ideological homogenity of the situation.

  4. Gee “Dick”, what makes them gay? You can be a wimp without being gay you know. Why are you so defensive anyway?

  5. This post is prima facie evidence of why the Republican Party is fast becoming a minority party. If you’re not marching in lockstep with the Far Right’s tune, you are belittled and labeled a RINO. Voters who once found a home in the GOP are leaving it in droves to become independents and Democrats because they are offended by all the litmus tests they must pass to be considered “pure.”

    Pete Hershberger and Jim Kolbe have won elections for years for your party, but because they part company with you on a few issues, you scorn them and do so in a pathetic manner. What makes this post so laughable is that they have also been beating YOU for years dating back to the challenge mounted against Kolbe by Mike Beehler in 1992. You guys strut and preen like YOU are the majority, but you have few wins to tout to prove your weakass case.

    By the way, John, weren’t you offended in 1988 when the first President Bush was called a “wimp” and one Democrat said he had “put his manhood in a blind trust?” Schoolyard taunts may be the coin of the realm for the chicken hawks who avoided Vietnam in the 1960’s and yet have the audacity to question the patriotism of disabled veterans like Max Cleland, but they aren’t scoring you guys points anymore. Folks are on to your slimy tactics, but please keep employing them so that you can keep losing elections.

  6. Rex,
    You’re patently wrong on WHY the Republicans are becoming a minority party. They are becoming a minority party for the exact OPPOSITE reasons you listed. The vast majority of elected Republican officials are moderates. When they show their true colors in office, the conservatives sit at home, don’t vote, don’t donate, and don’t volunteer. Yet, when we have hard-line conservatives who vote their conscience, then not only do we get the votes of nearly all Rs, but we get the votes of indeps and moderate Dems too. Reagan is the prime example. Examples showing how moderates are killing the party are Bush, almost every R in Congress (witness the losses in the 2006 elections and the impending losses in 2008), and the loss of the Republican majority in the New Jersey legislature when the Republicans acted like Dems. Heck, Deb Gullet (a McLame goon) almost lost her election because she’s a RINO. She even said “I guess I was too moderate.” Jack harper, a conservative, beat his moderate incumbent opponent (I forget his name). Dean Martin, when he first ran for Senate, picked off the incumbent RINO Tom Horne. So, your assertion, and the assertion of many moderates like Christie Todd Whitman’s simpering “It’s My Party Too” crowd, that meanie conservatives are driving away moderates and killing the party, is just 100% wrong and bassackwards.

  7. Rex,

    Do you object to the comments or the story itself? If the story bothers you then I am hurt. I tried very hard to write a balanced, newsworthy article. Slightly whimsical perhaps but certainly not over the top. Our recent coverage of Hershberger is definitely more balanced then Ted’s or Michael’s writings about Melvin. I certainly did not use the term R**O.

    Is winning elections now your definition of a good Republican? If so then we agree that Senators Ron Gould and Jack Harper are great Republicans. Come to think of it we should include Representative Russell Pearce. Not from south of the Gila but certainly from Arizona. What an amazing state. These three in the legislature and Napolitano as Governor. Talk about diversity!

  8. Josey-

    I don’t object to the story at all, but do find it revealing of the biases inherent in this blog. Your story was clearly meant to ridicule and dismiss both Kolbe and Hershberger, who have both helped to further your majorities since Kolbe was first elected to the Arizona Senate in the mid-’70’s.

    For the record, I feel the same way about Move On and other leftist entities that blast Lieberman and other good Democrats for not aligning themselves 100% with their agendas. If you look at the voting records of both Kolbe and Hershberger over time, my guess is that most Republicans would agree with them most of the time. Reagan once said that “someone who agrees with you 80% of the time is your friend and ally, not some 20% traitor.”

    It is the insistence on ideological purity that reduces either party to a den of exclusivity and, ultimately, extinction. As a Democrat, I am proud to be part of a party that includes both Grijalva and Giffords, “Blue Dogs” and liberals, Russ Feingold and Ben Nelson. The GOP used to be able to claim many factions itself, but you have been busily purging liberal and moderate Republicans since the late ’80’s and the results speak for themselves. As a matter of fact, I myself was a registered Republican from 1982-2000.

  9. nightcrawler says

    And in related news, the former Congressman stated he became an official New York Giants fan late in the fourth quarter of the Superbowl.

  10. SonoranSam says

    Josie: The article’s fine, and the truth is, so is Sonoran Alliance. You guys are honest about your opinions and straightforward.

    And this liberal-independent (just a reminder, I’m not a registered Democrat) feels welcomed to post his dissenting views with confidence they’ll be considered and refuted – but always in a polite way.

    Having said all that…I’m convinced Kolbe pulled his Bee endorsement because he received private assurances that Bee would back off on the gay marriage amendment. Bee kinda-sorta did, which is why it had so much trouble coming to the Senate floor for a vote.

    But when Harper-Gould-Gorman etc. succeeded in getting it to a vote, Bee danced with the ones that brought him to the prom and gave the anti-civil rights amentment (sorry guys, but that’s what it is) the 16th vote.

    As to what’s in the water south of the Gila, it’s common sense. Bee ain’t all bad, though I’d vote Giffords if I lived in CD8, and Hershberger is smack-dab in the political center. The koolaid drinkers are pushing Capt. Al, but if he wins the primary you’re handing the LD26 Senate seat back to the Dems.

    Go ahead, have at my post, and at me.

  11. Rex,

    Perhaps you detected a bias because we have one. From the beginning SA has been clear that this is a conservative blog with an agenda. The style of the article is certainly light hearted but it is not dismissive. You must have missed our coverage of the Melvin/Hershberger debates. We have been very fair and respectful. Nintzel was tougher on Hershberger. We are downright reasonable and sane compared to Moveon.org.

    Hershberger hardly qualifies as a moderate. He has a 37 from the AZ Federation of Taxpayers, one point below the Democrat he seeks to replace. He has a D- from the Goldwater Institute. Neither of these groups measure social issues. Hershberger has a pretty liberal record on fiscal issues. Is voting to support partial birth abortions a moderate position? Both Hershberger and Kolbe voted to keep this barbaric practice legal.

  12. A lot can happen in 11 terms in DC. While I don’t favor term limits, there is probably something to be said for not staying too long. He got to the point where he had a lot of perks and power. Not saying he abused it but 22 years is a long time and things change. Not going to go on a Kolbe bashing tirade. There are clearly areas where he let down the conservatives. Would certainly explain the tough primary two years ago and the current expectations of this year’s CD8 nominee from those who write for and commment at this site.

    Bottom line is that the guy worked hard for us for a long time, and, yes, attained some level of perks in the process. It would be nice if he could be a part of the greater efforts of the party, at the top and bottom of the ticket, esp at the grassroots level. The litmus test seems to go both ways from him to others and from others to him and that leaves things awkward. Too bad, the guy has a ton of history and perspective at the state and national level.

  13. GOP Boomer Gal says

    I am not a single issue voter, so, although I disagreed with Kolbe on several issues, I always supported him because I believed he was better than the RAT opponent.

    However, it seems to me that Kolbe has decided it’s OK for him to dump someone over a single issue, and that’s the hypocrisy of the left every time.

  14. How come the Democrats seem to have no problem running conservative candidates for Congress and state legislatures if they think they can win and Republicans are loath to run liberal Republicans in districts where the constituents are such that only a liberal can win? Take, for example, Arizona’s Fourth Congressional District – please.

    The Republicans are down to one House member in New England, Chris Shays (CT) who’s in danger. It’s likely they’ll lose three or more seats in New York State, including their last House seat in New York City and two upstate, in addition to the three they lost in 2006. They do better in the Senate, but I’m sure some of you would like to see people like Susan Collins and Gordon Smith driven out of the party.

    I’d love to hear someone explain, why, if your thesis about the GOP winning only when it runs true-blue conservatives who share all your views, did J.D. Hayworth lose in 2006.

    You really need to look at changing demographics, particularly regarding people under 30. Are any of you under 30? Or are you all old farts like me?

  15. AZpublius says

    Richard – Joe Lieberman is a counter example to your question. Aside from all that, from my perspective, every candidate has a portfolio of issues on which they run, plus an underlying capability to actually execute on that portfolio. I prefer candidates that have a diversified portfolio of interests, rather than concentrating solely on the social agenda which I find to be contrary to a limited role of government in our lives. I think Hershberger does represent a strong proportion of his district, but I wish he exercised more independent judgment from some of his constituencies (i.e. teachers unions). Let’s elect Republicans who understand how to work across constituencies, with diverse interests, to achieve results that are consistent with a range of fundamental, articulated conservative principles. Those conservatives that only know one note are like the person in the band that plays the triangle (or in Gould’s case, the cymbal).


  1. […] funny, I took some grief from Sonoran Alliance who said that I “got in a lather” about their reaction to Kolbe. Actually, I didn’t react at all (I wrote about it before they posted anything about it, far […]

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