The few, the committed (either meaning can apply), and the cognitively challenged gathered in Tulsa Oklahoma this weekend to hear the Chief Executive Demagogue speak.
Arizona Congressional District (CD) Eight Representative Debbie Lesko was one of them.
“BREAKING NEWS: I’m traveling with @realDonaldTrump to Oklahoma on Saturday! I can’t wait to attend and see the crowd. Lots of momentum to reelect President Donald J. Trump!”
Ms. Lesko paid no attention to the potential health dangers associated with the COVID 19 surge in both Oklahoma and Arizona and decided to travel to Tulsa.
In a June 18 piece, AZ Central columnist EJ Montini called Ms. Lesko’s behavior worse than “clueless, oblivious, insensitive, or ignorant.”
The Democratic Contenders vying for their party’s nomination to run against Lesko after the August 4 primaries responded to the Blog for Arizona’s request for comment by offering their perspective on Ms. Lesko’s weekend travel plans.
Michael Muscato wrote:
“Elected officials putting their political aspirations and party agenda before the needs of the people has been a way of life out here in the west valley for as long as I’ve been alive. I believe that the job of Congress is to represent the people of the district, not a political party or its leadership. Admittedly, my opponent having been our representative for the past 12 years and doing nothing to solve our problems (in fact has made many worse) is one reason why I’ve chosen to challenge her for the United States House of Representatives. With all of this being said, it’s truly remarkable the lengths at which her partisan loyalty and allegiance to the president has defied not only common sense, but also her own constituent’s health and safety interest.”
“I am not a fan of chaos. Especially the kind of chaos we are witnessing – the kind caused by poor leadership, ineffective policy, inaction, and flat-out denial of science and healthcare professionals. Not only is what we are seeing out of this nation’s leadership embarrassing, it’s nothing shy of criminally negligent. So far it’s cost us all 120,000 American lives.”
“As a business owner, my doors were mandated to be closed for weeks while we had 100 cases per day. Now we have over 3,000 a day and we are in a political game of kick the can down the road over wearing a mask. Last week I made the decision to close our doors again without a mandate, out of caution for our clients and my own family. Clients who didn’t take Covid19 seriously and then finding out they tested positive, leaving us to contact trace our other clients and my wife who runs our business. No thanks. I’d rather have my wife and no business than have a business and no wife. Yet there was my opponent trying to bring the RNC to our district – then after failing to do so, cheering being able to attend the Tulsa rally… How’d that work out for her and POTUS? Is she going to be quarantined for 14 days? My guess is she’ll be there alongside him at the Phoenix rally this coming Tuesday. We have a fan club member, not a representative.”
“Let the record show that while this virus took hold of this nation Lesko called it a hoax, while my campaign quickly began delivering groceries to seniors throughout the district. While Lesko voted against the Families First Act and opposed unemployment bumps, families like mine lost our jobs and had our businesses decimated. And while our state and nation asked for leadership, we have been force-fed hateful partisanship.”
“This has to stop, and it can November 3, 2020. We can elect a leader who cares about the people of this district.”
Bob Musselwhite commented:
“There is no doubt that Covid19 will spread from the event in Tulsa. (Six of the organizers of the event were infected even prior to its start.) But Ms. Lesko, in her fervent need to align herself with the underwhelming number that turned out, completely disregarded the rational and thoughtful medical advice to social distance. This not only puts herself at risk (which would not benefit her supporters) but also her family, not to mention those of us here in the West Valley that includes Sun City where she will return. Do you think she will self-quarantine for two weeks?”
“Most of us in District Eight who are over sixty-five and most vulnerable according to the scientists and medical professionals, have worked our whole lives to enjoy our well-earned retirement. I think it is critical that no one, let alone a careless elected official, do anything to jeopardize one single life-especially because that one life could belong to the very person now reading this.”
Bob Olsen stated:
“Debbie Lesko’s trip to Tulsa to be with Trump and his “crowds” of followers, shows her true colors. It shows her priorities are not in proper alignment with the job she was sworn to do when she took office. She had the option, like anyone in the public eye to be a role model and demonstrate safe practices. Instead, she is modeling horrible behavior in the face of learned medical advice in combatting the spread of this deadly virus. Instead of modeling safe distancing and wearing a mask, she did what she thought would curry favor with Donald Trump. A true leader and public servant would have done what’s best for the people they were elected to serve. In this case, she did what she thought was best for her. She seems only interested in what she thinks serves to make her more important in Trump’s eyes. As our elected representative in Congress, she should be demonstrating safe practices that could save the lives of some of her own constituents. We have new emergency orders to wear masks and follow distancing parameters in almost every city government within the district she represents, CD8. Her own self-importance and her upward drive to power is all she seems to care about. “Oblivious” is a good way to define her actions, but so is “self-aggrandizing.”
It turns out Ms. Lesko’s tweet about “seeing the crowd and lots of momentum” did not come true.
Her aversion to scientific and medical reality during a public health pandemic is not serving the people in her district well either.
It is very probable she did not use her time with Mr. Trump to persuade him not to come to Arizona on June 23 and risk more people’s lives at a planned rally at a Phoenix megachurch.
It will be interesting to see if Trump, Lesko, and the other attendees at the Phoenix and Yuma events on Tuesday at least wear masks.
If not, it is yet another reason for the residents of CD Eight to consider a different candidate other than Ms. Lesko when they vote in the November elections.
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