SWAG early filers for 2014 (Updated)


Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

The Arizona courts concocted the "Huppenthal Rule" to eviscerate the citizen initiative "resign to run" law. The Arizona legislature is currently in the final stages of effectively nullifying the "resign to run" law through legislative legerdemain, rather than referring the repeal of the "resign to run" law to the voters. More and more candidates are filing to run for office well in advance of an election year through "exploratory committees."

Given the expense of elections, and the Governor just having signed into law the new much higher contribution and spending caps enacted by the Arizona legislature, it begs the question, "Why hasn't everyone who is going to run in 2014 already taken advantage of the "Huppenthal Rule" and filed an exploratory committee to run already?" What are you waiting for? This is the brave new world of Citizens United politics in Arizona, people.

Normally I let Craig tell you about who is running for office this far out in advance of an election, but I wanted to take a moment to look at the early filers for the statewide offices.


Jan Brewer (R) – Current Governor. Not filed, but still fantasizing about a legal challenge to the term limits provision of the Arizona Constitution, and why not? After the courts eviscerated the "resign to run" law and concocted the "Huppenthal Rule" to let him run for office, anything is possible. There may be a judge who owes his or her seat to Jan Brewer.

Ken Bennett (R) – Current Secretary of State. Ken "Birther" Bennett filed an exploratory committee more than a year ago.

Hugh Hallman (R) – Former Mayor of Tempe has filed. He's an attorney and economist, and served as headmaster of Tempe Preparatory Academy.

Al Melvin (R) – Currently the state senator for LD 11, previously served in the House. Cap'n Al Melvin filed an exploratory committee today.

Scott Smith (R) – Not filed, but widely believed to be running. Currently the Mayor of Mesa.

Christine Jones (R) – Not filed, but reported to be running. Former GoDaddy executive vice president and general counsel (stay classy with those sexist ads at GoDaddy).

Andrew Thomas (R) – The disgraced and disbarred former Maricopa County Attorney. This guy is as out of touch with reality as Cap'n Al Melvin. (Reported by Jim Nintzel, Tucson Weekly).

Wil Cardon (R) – The millionaire trust fund baby who spent a big chunk of his own "born with a silver poon fortune in his mouth" fortune running for the U.S. Senate last year. (Reported by Jim Nintzel, Tucson Weekly).

Fred DuVal (D) – The former Chairman of the Arizona Board of Regents filed an exploratory committee. Fred has previous experience as an aide in the administration of Arizona Governor Bruce Babbitt, and as an aide in the administration of President Bill Clinton, and as a Democratic National Committeeman.

Chad Campbell (D) – Not filed, but widely believed to be running. Currently House Minority Leader from District 24 in Phoenix. A former Community Outreach Director for Children's Action Alliance, he also also serves on the Phoenix Environmental Quality Commission, and the Boards of Directors for Communities in Schools of Arizona and the Center for Progressive Leadership.

Ronald Martin Cavanaugh (D) – Filed in January. He is from Springerville. Cavanaugh was a Libertarian candidate for governor in 2010. Nuf' said.

John Lewis Mealer (Amer.Elect) – Filed on April Fool's Day (I'm sure there is no significance to this). He is from Lakeside.

Diana Elizabeth Ramseys-Rasmussen-Kennedy 4th (Ind.) – Original filing in August 2012. Seriously, the 4th with a name that long?

Secretary of State

Jack Harper (R) – The former member of the Arizona House and Senate from LD 4 has filed. Since 2004 he has been the owner and operator of Marketing and Labor Distribution.

Steve Montenegro (R) – Exploratory committee filed. State Representative from District 14, and serving as Speaker Pro-Tempore (the #4 ranking Republican).

Michele Reagan (R) – Exploratory committee filed. State Senator from District 23, previously served in the House.

Leah Landrum-Taylor (D) – Exploratory Committee. State Senator from District 27, previously served in the House. Leah currently works as Adjunct Faculty for Maricopa Community College, and is also the founder and Vice-President of Landrum Foundation.

Christopher Campas (D) – Chris has filed. He has held several positions in the Democratic Party and run for several more. A nice young man, but a classic over-achiever.

Attorney General

Tom Horne (R) – The current Attorney General has filed. Tom "banned for life by the SEC" Horne was considering running for governor but all of the investigations into his political corruption must have changed his mind.

Mark Brnovich (R) – Not filed, but believed to be running. Currently the director of the Arizona Department of Gaming. A former prosecutor, he is disqualified in my book for having been a lawyer for the Goldwater Institute, and an administrator for the Corrections Corporation of America. (Reported by Jim Nintzel, Tucson Weekly).

Felecia Rotellini (D) – Rotellini has filed. Currently a lawyer in private practice, formerly with the Attorney General's office and the former Superintendent of the State Banking Department. Narrowly lost to Horne in 2010.

State Treasurer

 Doug Ducey (R) – The current Treasurer has not filed. Rumored to be considering running for governor.

Superintendent of Public Instruction

John Huppenthal (R) – The current Superintendent of Public Instruction, and the man responsible for the practice of early filing as an exploratory committee.

Sharon Thomas (D) – Sharon has filed. Democratic party activist.

State Mine Inspector

Manny Cruz (D) – Exploratory committee. Manny has over fifteen years experience as an Explosives Engineer, Safety Director, and Miner, working in mines across the country.  He is the Executive Director of the Abandoned Mine Safety Organization, a 501(c)(3) non-profit entity dedicated to closing abandoned mines and providing abandoned mine safety education. Recently ran for Mayor of Glendale.

Arizona Corporation Commission

Carl Seel (R) – Exploratory committee filed. State representative District 20. Seel was the sponsor of the "birther" bill, and is opposed to Arizona’s Renewable Energy Standard (REST).

Christopher Campbell (R) – Exploratory committee filed. According to BlogForAZ's Will Greene, Campbell is a Prescott radio soundboard operator for radio station KBSZ.

Jim Holway (D) – Exploratory committee filed. Holway was elected to represent Maricopa County on the Central Arizona Water Conservation District Board in 2010.  According to BlogForAZ's Will Greene, he is formerly the Director of the Western Lands and Communities program, a Professor of Practice in the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment at Arizona State University, the ASU Coordinator for the Arizona Water Institute, and Assistant Director of the Arizona Department of Water Resources.

Note: Commissioner Gary Pierce is terming out and Commissioner Brenda Burns has just announced that she will not seek reelection.

If you know of any other candidates reported to be considering running but who have not yet filed a committee, post it in the comments.