Tucson Progressive

Pamela Powers, a progressive voice for Arizona

AZ Governor’s Race: ‘Not Sure’ Holds Lead in 9-Way Field

governor race data 3-14

Public Policy Polling Data plotted by The Tucson Progressive

Nine candidates are running for governor of Arizona in the 2014 election. How do voters feel about them?


According to a recent survey (pdf) of 870 Arizona voters by  Public Policy Polling, Arizonans are underwhelmed by our choices for governor. The above graphic shows Governor Jan Brewer’s approval rating compared to the nine declared candidates: Secretary of State Ken Bennett, State Treasurer Doug Ducey, Former Board of Regents Member and sole Democrat Fred DuVal, Businesswoman Christine Jones, State Senator Al Melvin, Physician John Molina, Former California Congressman Frank Riggs, Mesa Mayor Scott Smith, and Former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas.

Overall, the only clear winner is “Not Sure”– despite months of campaigning by some of the candidates, most notably DuVal and Bennett. In the GOP primary, “undecided” scored 34% — 14 points above Bennett, the GOP leader. Ouch. Individual GOP match-ups with DuVal show no clear winners because such a high percentage of voters are “not sure.”

Except for Smith and DuVal, whose approval/disapproval ratings are almost equal, all of the other candidates have much higher disapproval ratings. Disbarred county attorney Thomas has the highest disapproval rating at 29% (vs 13% approval rating). Secretary of State “Birther” Bennett (who has distinguished himself by demanding that Hawaii produce President Barack Obama’s birth certificate and by backing voter suppression legislation passed by the Arizona Legislature) has a 24% disapproval rating (vs 12% approval). Melvin (who wants to turn Arizona into the country’s nuclear waste dump and recently showed his stupidity on CNN) and California carpetbagger Riggs have the lowest approval ratings (4% vs 5%, respectively).

With eight months before the election, where does this leave us?

Thomas, Melvin, and Riggs– and maybe Molina and Jones– should give up and stop wasting our time. Riggs and Molina have zero name recognition. Melvin, Thomas, Ducey, Jones, and Bennett have bad or highly mixed name recognition. For example, on the question of SB1062 (the recent anti-gay bill passed by the Legislature) Jones, Thomas, Ducey, and Melvin all backed SB1062, while Bennett and Smith played both sides of the fence. DuVal was the only gubernatorial candidate who came out solidly against SB1062. (The same Public Policy Poll showed that 72% of Arizonans agree with Brewer’s veto of SB1062 and, furthermore, 49% approve of gay marriage.)

NOTE to Fred DuVal: push your campaign into high gear, while the Republicans scramble.


5 comments on “AZ Governor’s Race: ‘Not Sure’ Holds Lead in 9-Way Field

  1. revgerry
    March 6, 2014

    Pam, hi,
    Maybe you could do an interview with Fred? I like him but most people don’t know him.


    • Pamela Powers Hannley
      March 10, 2014

      DuVal will be at the Planned Parenthood Luncheon and the Nucleus Club on Thursday.


  2. standup4urstate
    June 4, 2014

    Please include candidate J. Johnson for General Election articles.
    Check out http://www.writeinjjohnson.com


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The Tucson Progressive: Pamela J. Powers

I stand on the side of Love. I believe in kindness to all creatures on Earth and the inherent self-worth of all individuals–not just people who agree with me or look like me.

Widespread economic and social injustice prompted me to become a candidate for the Arizona House, representing Legislative District 9 in the 2016 election.

My platform focused on economic reforms to grow Arizona’s economy, establish a state-based public bank, fix our infrastructure, fully fund public education, grow local small businesses and community banks, and put people back to work at good-paying jobs.

In the Arizona House, I was a strong voice for fiscal responsibility a moratorium on corporate tax breaks until the schools were fully funded, increased cash assistance to the poor, expansion of maternal healthcare benefits, equal rights, choice, unions, education at all levels and protecting our water supply.

After three terms, I retired from the Arizona Legislature in January 2023 but will continue to blog and produce my podcast “A View from the Left Side.”

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