Earlier this year the Arizona Republic’s Linda Valdez suggested that Fred DuVal get himself a primary opponent so that the feckless media villagers would pay attention to his campaign before the primary election at the end of August. I agreed. Listen to Linda, Fred.
Linda’s point was driven home again this week in a report by the Republic’s Yvonne Wingett Sanchez, Fred DuVal sees pros, cons of no primary challenger:
While having virtually no primary opponent has its advantages — saving campaign dollars for the general-election race, for example — it also comes with a disadvantage: a crowded GOP field that is getting all of the [media] attention so far.
The Republicans have drawn attention with TV ads and made news jostling for endorsements and reporting their swelling August-primary coffers.
Meanwhile, DuVal, 59, has been jumping up and down on the sidelines, trying to raise his campaign’s visibility as candidates barrel toward the Nov. 4 general election.
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[DuVal's] struggled to get media attention, a reflection of how running unopposed can hinder building name recognition with voters, getting a message out and fine-tuning it. Still, he’s laying groundwork for what’s expected to be a challenging general-election race for a governor’s seat that’s open for the first time in more than a decade.
“The upside is saving money and resources … and he gets to sit back and watch the Republicans beat the bejeebers out of each other,” said Democratic consultant Bob Grossfeld. “The major downside is there’s a risk of being below the radar for too long, just at the time when people are starting to get interested. … The candidate who has no opposition is headed into a general without being thoroughly introduced to voters.”
This is an indictment of the feckless news media and its single-minded focus on the “horse race,” i.e., fundraising numbers (dollars do not equal votes), internal polls (self-serving push polls), and wild speculation by media villagers about who will win. Their reporting is nearly devoid of any serious policy discussion.
While the news media did report that Fred DuVal has filed for governor this week, DuVal files signatures for governor’s race (Arizona Capitol Times), Duval officially enters race for governor (Arizona Daily Star), and The Republic, above, only the Arizona Capitol Times (subscription required) reported that Fred DuVal unveils plan for job growth:
Presumptive Democratic gubernatorial nominee Fred DuVal unveiled a plan for spurring job growth in Arizona that includes improving K-12 and higher education, expanding tax credits for research and development, reducing regulatory burdens and giving preference to in-state companies that compete for government contracts.
DuVal announced his plan, titled “Arizona is Open for Business,” on Tuesday[.]
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Much of DuVal’s plan focused on education. DuVal said he wants to expand vocational and technical training so students are better prepared for college and the workforce, emphasize training for in-demand fields and restore the all-day kindergarten program that was cut amid the state’s fiscal crisis.
DuVal said improving education is critical to creating jobs.
“The common denominator, of course, to all this is getting back to a much more robust investment in education as the core requirement of the workforce of the future,” DuVal said.
DuVal said he wants to expand Arizona’s Angel Investment tax credit, which gives financial incentives to people who make investments in small businesses, and the state’s tax credit for research and development. He said he’s spoken with people in the venture capital community who say the credits don’t last for long enough to make them worthwhile in many cases.
Additionally, DuVal said he plans to bolster Arizona’s bioscience and technology sectors with increased state investment in Science Foundation Arizona and the Translational Genomics Research Institute, known as TGen. He said the state must restore funding that was cut to the science foundation and ensure that TGen has more stable funding from the state. The Legislature and Gov. Jan Brewer approved $15 million in funding for the organization over the next five years.
Parts of DuVal’s plan build on Brewer’s efforts to curb new regulations. DuVal said he will continue Brewer’s moratorium on new regulations, as well as eliminate unnecessary regulations and screen all legislation that includes regulatory burdens with a “competitiveness impact statement” to determine the impact that proposed regulations will have.
DuVal also said he wants to expand tourism by promoting a “new day in Arizona” to negative perceptions of the state and lost conventions and tourisms stemming from controversial legislation that Arizona has passed. In addition, DuVal said he wants to increase funding for state parks that has been cut in recent years.
DuVal’s plan can be viewed here: http://fred2014.com/images/fred2014-jobs-plan.pdf
Here is the Fred DuVal press release that much of the feckless news media ignored this week:
Stop unnecessary new regulation by requiring “Competitiveness Impact Statements” for new legislation.
Create college and career pathways that lead to high-growth jobs.
Restore universal all-day kindergarten to give our kids a head start on the skills they need to get the jobs of the future.
Provide “in-state preference” to Arizona-based companies.
Invest in renewable and clean energy by retrofitting state buildings with solar panels and raise the caps on tax credits for research and development.
Increase trade with Mexico by improving our infrastructure to ensure that wait times at ports of entry are short, efficient, and cost-effective.
Boost tourism by promoting “A New Day in Arizona”.