Posted by Craig McDermott, cross-posted from Random Musings
As a Democrat, I'm proud that most, if not all, of the D primary races have been run clean and on the issues. The personal and ad hominem attacks have been all but nonexistent.
As a writer, I'm bored by the Democratic races. Civility and professionalism are great qualities in elected officials and candidates; they're lousy topics for more than the occasional post.
Fortunately, the Republicans have stepped into the gap. Enthusiastically. 🙂
Two and a half weeks ago, I wrote about my newest favorite website, Crazy Jack Harper. That site highlights some of Harper's embarrassing behavior…at least, it's behavior that would be embarrassing to any public official who takes their responsibilities seriously. The site reads like a Republican site, if only because it doesn't criticize Harper for his political positions, only for silly,unprofessional, and (possibly) unethical acts while in office. As yet, however, no one has officially taken credit for the site.
In a sign that the Republican primary season is heating up, another anti-Republican candidate website has popped up, and they aren't trying to be subtle with this one – another R campaign is taking credit for it in the "Paid for by…" boilerplate at the bottom of the page.
The pic below was emailed to me from a regular reader. It's of a sign erected at Hardy and Southern in Tempe.
The website listed at the bottom of the sign, stoptom.com, redirects a surfer to "thetomhornetruth.com
That website lists a litany of Horne's alleged sins against Arizona Republican orthodoxy – he's had his securities trading license suspended by the SEC (I thought support for financial fraudsters *was* a primary plank on the GOP platform), he voted for sales tax increases while in the lege in the 1990s (he's hardly the only one – the only tax the Rs actually like is the ever-regressive sales tax), and so on – including one that his anti-immigrant bonafides aren't strong enough.
Most of the points raised on the website either fall into the category of "light on substance" (the SEC stuff is *40* years old) or irrelevent to the AG's race (umm,,,"sales tax"? "Abortion"? Pray tell, how is either matter germane to the AG's office?).
However, relevance and substance don't seem to matter to the authors of the website. It's all about winning the R primary.
The bottom line of the page:
PAID FOR BY THE THOMAS FOR AG COMMITTEE
Hypocrisy alert: Part of the Thomas campaign's diatribe against Horne is running down a list of Horne's speeding tickets.
From the site:
On Friday, August 21, 2009, the Arizona Republic broke a story reporting that Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Horne received six photo radar tickets in 18 months, including one for speeding in a school zone.
Sounds damning, doesn't it? An attorney, and a candidate for state attorney general, regularly flouting the law?
It would be damning, except for the fact that Andrew Thomas proudly and loudly refused
to prosecute photo radar citations.
He also seems to have screwed up in knowledge of the law.
From the site:
Officer Mataele issued a criminal citation to Horne, charging him with violating A.R.S. 28-701.02 A2. This is a CRIMINAL charge (not civil) that subjected Horne to a maximum possible sentence of six (6) months in jail, three (3) years probation and a $2,500 fine.
OK, that doesn't prove Thomas' lack of knowledge of Arizona law…except that A.R.S. 13-707
sets the jail time for a class three misdemeanor at 30 days, and A.R.S. 13-802
sets the maximum fine for a class three misdemeanor at $500.
A lawyer who flouts the law (like Horne, apparently) is bad; a lawyer who doesn't know the law (like Thomas, apparently) isn't exactly better.
It's an election year, and it looks like Jan Brewer isn't the only R whose campaign motto is "Damn the facts! Full distort ahead!"
The next four weeks are going to be fun….