Yes Wade, Pete and Jennifer, there is a voice for moderate Republicans

by David Safier

In a Star article I linked to yesterday about the domination of the far right in the Arizona Republican Party, Wade McLean, who came in third in the LD26 Republican primary, said he was shut out at many Republican events he attended.

"There was no voice for the moderate," McLean said. "My biggest hurdle was I was not conservative enough for the Republican Party."

Yes Wade, there is a voice for moderate Republican.

And, to be more inclusive: Yes, Pete Hershberger and Jennifer Burns and others who feel their party has taken leave of its senses, there is a voice for moderate Republicans. It is to speak the truth, out loud.

Here are two statements you might make, one careful, one bolder:

  1. As a proud Republican, I cannot endorse and will not vote for candidates such as [fill in the blank] because of their extreme right wing, anti-education agenda [etc.].
  2. As a proud Republican, I will not vote for [fill in the blank] because of their extreme right wing, anti-education agenda [etc.]. Instead I will be voting for [fill in the Democratic candidates].

Pete Hershberger was called all kinds of names publicly by Vic Williams for supporting Wade McLean. Why should Hershberger feel he has to bite his fist and remain silent? Burns and McLean have also earned the scorn of their party. Why reward Russell Pearce and his minions by sitting on the sidelines during this election?

The extreme right wing has gained power by being fearless, while others, moderate Republicans as well as Democrats, have been cautious. If moderates want to have a place in their party, they have to be leaders who say, "If I don't fit your version of Republican, I'll rally my supporters to deny you their votes." If the right wing loses a few elections because of your brave stands, you may gain standing in your party once again.

Being moderate means you don't lean left or right. It doesn't mean you have to moderate your voice when feel strongly on an issue — or an election.

In a very real sense, the future of Arizona is in your hands. If you sit quietly by, you have to share the blame for the results.

I understand Jim Kolbe is retired and has nothing to lose right now, so you don't have to go Full Kolbe, but he just wrote an email for Andrei Cherny which begins,

I served as a Republican in Congress representing Arizona for over 22 years, as a Republican in the Arizona state legislature for 6 before that, and I’m still a proud Republican.  I’ve never endorsed a Democrat for any office other than local ones.  But as we find ourselves in a worsening fiscal crisis, we need to have the most qualified people in leadership positions and there is no doubt in my mind that Andrei Cherny is the right person for State Treasurer.

Without any hesitation, I not only endorse Andrei, but am joining his campaign as its Chair.

You can read the whole email below the fold.

 

Here is the complete Jim Kolbe email:

I served as a Republican in Congress representing Arizona for over 22 years, as a Republican in the Arizona state legislature for 6 before that, and I’m still a proud Republican.  I’ve never endorsed a Democrat for any office other than local ones.  But as we find ourselves in a worsening fiscal crisis, we need to have the most qualified people in leadership positions and there is no doubt in my mind that Andrei Cherny is the right person for State Treasurer.

Without any hesitation, I not only endorse Andrei, but am joining his campaign as its Chair.  During and after all my years of service, I have come to realize that party labels do not mean a lot.  I have known Andrei for several years and I believe that his accomplishments and experience in managing organizations; his work and record as a prosecutor in the Arizona Attorney General’s office; and his sheer drive, intelligence, and education are what we need in this position.

I’ve signed on to help and am ready for whatever guff comes my way.  Will you help as well by making a contribution today?  In a campaign like this, every little bit helps if we're going to break the mold and get past the old divisions.

Andrei and I don’t agree on every issue, but I have a lot of respect for his commitment and his vision and I know that the guy I’m supporting is the best person for this job.

Given the problems the state has I think we need to bring both parties together and support Andrei because of his skills, leadership and vision.

We aren’t going to fix problems if we don’t have leaders that will cross party lines.  And we won’t have those leaders if we as voters don’t support and help the candidates who are willing to break out of the partisan strongholds.  By asking me to chair his campaign, Andrei has shown he’s ready to do that.  I hope you’ll lend a helping hand to our efforts today.

Thanks,
Jim Kolbe

P.S. Your contribution right now will help us hit the ground running in the general election.  We don't have a moment to waste!

One response to “Yes Wade, Pete and Jennifer, there is a voice for moderate Republicans

  1. Kudos to Kolbe!!! and welcome to the fold!!! I know I speak for many when I say we honor what you are doing and applaud you for standing up for what you believe in. I have a special interest in Andre – come to find out, he and my nephew were in a high school youth group together!