Crossposted at DemocraticDiva.com
One of the (many) problems in a red state as economically polarized as Arizona is that the wealthier people are, the more insulated they are from the terrible right wing laws and policies that get passed. They have no fear of being stopped on the street by law enforcement because of how they look. Their children attend private schools or what good public schools remain. The indignities and deprivations visited upon vulnerable members of the population due to cuts to safety net programs are abstractions to them. They live mostly segregated lives in exclusive communities where they only interact with poor people when they’re being served by them. And these affluent Arizonans wield nearly all the political clout because they are the people who fund lobbyists and campaigns, including those of some of the most noxious right wingers.
With that in mind, I need to have a word with some of our esteemed business leaders, CEOs, and titans of industry in Arizona. In particular I want to talk to the ones who constantly bemoan our political climate here and the cuts to education, public safety, and health care* (while turning right around and lobbying for tax cuts for themselves but let’s leave that aside for now):
What are you going to do about Doug Ducey? He’s radically anti-choice and anti-gay rights, and militantly anti-immigrant. He also wants to repeal the Medicaid law and abolish the state income tax. He has a close relationship Cathi Herrod, who promises to be even more of a fixture at the legislature with no Chuck Coughlin in the Governor’s office to keep her somewhat at bay. Ducey is kicking off the general campaign with an event starring Sarah Palin and Dinesh D’Souza, who is one of the most terrible people in the world. If you aren’t lining up to give Fred DuVal enthusiastic support and piles of money right now, then I don’t want to hear you whine about how lousy things are under Governor Ducey. I’m looking straight at you, Craig Barrett, when I say this. I’m looking at you, various and sundry Chambers of Commerce. You too, lobbyists.
You guys stood idly by when SB1070 bitterly divided the state and sparked boycotts in 2010. You were nearly a day late and a dollar short with SB1062 this past year. Ducey has promised to bring that back. Is that what you want? Do you really want to go through that again? How much time and money would you like to see the Legislature devote to debating Cathi Herrod** bills and defending them in court?
Oh, and this is a general election now, and a statewide one, so you don’t get to blame partisan primaries if Ducey gets elected because he is able to overwhelm DuVal with dark money and dirty smears. You sure as shit don’t get to blame Clean Elections. And it’s not like DuVal is some raging left wing hippie either. I mean, geez.
*There is a considerable segment of this group who hold very right wing views and think the Legislature is doing just fine. They are already lined up behind Ducey.
**I don’t think Herrod had much to do with Ducey winning the primary. She’s not that influential in the public, despite her prodigious ability to bully lawmakers. It was the aforementioned right wing business people pouring money into Ducey that put him over.