Arizona Independents meeting – LD 10 in Tucson

    September 30, 2017 @ 12:30 pm – 2:00 pm
    Murphy-Wilmot Branch Library
    530 N Wilmot Rd
    Tucson, AZ 85711

    “This will be the first gathering of the Arizona Independent Party in Pima County. Hear from independent candidate for Governor, Noah Dyer, and independent candidate for Tucson City Council, Gary Watson, about the importance of organizing independents. We will also be establishing our permanent presence in Legislative District (LD) 10.

    Topics will include:
    * Scheduling regular meeting times
    * Outreach opportunities
    * Attracting and training independent candidates in LD 10
    * And more
    If you want to see real change come to Arizona, this is where you need to be. We look forward to seeing you there!”[%7B%22mechanism%22%3A%22bookmarks%22%2C%22surface%22%3A%22bookmarks_menu%22%2C%22extra_data%22%3A%22[]%22%7D%2C%7B%22surface%22%3A%22dashboard%22%2C%22mechanism%22%3A%22calendar_tab_event%22%2C%22extra_data%22%3A%22[]%22%7D]%2C%22ref%22%3A46%2C%22source%22%3A2%7D

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    Carolyn Classen
    Carolyn Sugiyama Classen, a life long Democrat, was born & raised in the State of Hawaii, was a Legislative Aide for U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye on Capitol Hill, and practiced law for a while. In Tucson she worked as a tribal staff attorney for the Pascua Yaqui Tribe and later was the Interim Executive Director of the now defunct Domestic Violence Commission. In 2008 she became a “My Tucson” guest columnist for the Tucson Citizen newspaper, then continued blogging for for over four and a half years. Her blogsite was entitled “Carolyn’s Community” about community events and some political news, until Gannett Publishing shut down the site on January 31, 2014. She started with Blog for Arizona on Feb. 11, 2014. Part time she has been sitting as a Hearing Officer in Pima County Consolidated Justice Courts Small Claims Division since April, 2005. She is married to University of Arizona Distinguished Professor Albrecht Classen, a native of Germany. They have one son, who lives in Seattle, WA with his wife and daughter. She is also the Editor of the Southern Arizona Japanese Cultural Coalition website, (since Jan. 2013).


    1. Informational meeting for organizing Independents in LD 10, first time in Pima County, with goal to get “foothold, get Independent candidates elected in LD 10 Senate & House”. Tim Hart, 1st Vice Chair of Arizona Independent Party moderated. About 15 people at this initial meeting, many of whom were candidates. Who spoke: Nikki Lee, Dem Candidate in LD 10 House, used to be I, became Dem in 2016 despite the divisiveness of the parties, wants to focus on education, bring people together, has job as ag tech. Felicia Chew, former Ward 3 Council Dem candidate spoke about what she learned from the voters that they didn’t know how to get info on how to vote, esp. the poor & voiceless, is endorsing Prop. 204. Independent Gubernatorial candidate Noah Dyer spoke about “Party Power” – that 2 party system is ruining country due to dissatisfaction with both, skewed winners on both sides, with bimodal results of disenfranchised in the middle sitting it out now. He felt people needed to be re-engaged, with tolerance for all, with mission to offer great choices, organize, communicate w/ Independents. LD 10 Republican House Rep. Todd Clodfelter gave a report from his first term, said he was “atypical, in the middle”, voted against private school voucher bill, has participated in several bipartisan Town Halls for LD 10, is a fiscal conservative, planning a Legislative Visit for northern legislators to visit & understand Tucson. Chris Leon, I running for LD 23 Senate gave a slide show on Centrist Project, idea to get Is into government since not getting results from both parties, quoted Gallup Poll that 61% Americans support independents, tired of gridlock. Centrist Project targeting 10 states including Arizona. Gavin Searles, House candidate in LD 23 grew up in Thailand, now police officer, think people “need to sit down & talk together”as they did in Thailand after bad tsunami. Firefighter Gary Watson, Independent candidate in Ward 3 City Council said he was not R or D enough for either party, that key issues facing Tucson are bipartisan such as crime, economy, education, wants to find “common ground to fix problems”. Finally Tim Hart (moderator) spoke about Obama/Bernie grassroots, Clinton picked before the Dem nomination, that both parties come to Is at election time for their votes, there is a political shift needed due to dissatisfaction with both parties, need $ & information flow at state & local level.

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