Pamela Powers Hannley, a progressive voice for Arizona
Republican gubernatorial candidate Dicey Doug Ducey decided to duck debates in Tucson, but now the League of Women Voters of Greater Tucson (LWVGT) has reported that only ONE of the invited Republicans– Corporation Commission candidate Doug “I Heart APS” Little– will participate in a televised LWVGT debate in Tucson. All of the Democratic candidates agreed to the LWVGT debate invitation, along with Libertarian Barry Hess and “Independent Constitutionalist” J.L. Mealer.
“Dark Money” Ducey, Attorney General candidate Mark “Nullify the Constitution” Brnovich, Diane “Tea Party Tool” Douglas, and Tom “I Heart APS” Forese have all decided that debating in Arizona’s second largest city is not worth their time. These cowardly Republicans are taking a page from the playbooks of Senators Jeff Flake and John McCain: don’t go south of Oro Valley, unless you have to rush to the border for a photo opp.
Was it something we said? Or something they’re afraid we’ll say? Did someone tell them that every old hippie artist in Tucson has protest signs tucked behind the couch? Let’s face it. These bought-and-paid-for Koch Brothers candidates can’t hold a candle to the Democratic Party’s slate, and they know it. They don’t want to look stupid on camera. They prefer to hide and hope no one will notice. (Remember Jan Brewer’s on-camera brain fart in 2010?)
They will continue to hide and hope we are stupid enough to vote based upon TV commercials. The money quote of the week comes from the League of Women Voters press release…
“When candidates decline to participate in a televised debate in Tucson, it shows disrespect for Pima County and its voters,” says LWVGT Voter Service Chair Sue DeArmond. “Invisible candidates are running for public office. A brief TV commercial is the only way by which we know our candidates. To say the least, democracy is compromised under these conditions.” [Emphasis added.]
Tucson– these “statewide” candidates aren’t running for office to serve YOU. They are funded by big business and that is who they will serve if elected. If these Tea Party Republicans are too cowardly to come to Tucson, meet us on our own turf, listen to our problems, and talk, THEY DON’T DESERVE YOUR VOTE.
If Republican candidates dodge us and play chicken before the election, you can imagine how much scorn they will show Tucson after the election. We can’t let them get away with these stealth candidacies. It’s bad for our state and our country when the best (or worst) television commercials determine the election.