Thursday, October 26, 2006

Stronger Graf, Weaker Giffords as Debates Wind Down

Tonight's debate at Flowing Wells was the last public appearance Gabby will be making to debate the issues (not including the KUAT in-studio debate Friday). Jay Quick, who is now eschewing debates, was expectedly absent while David Nolan showed up to crash the party as the uninvited guest.

While the audience waited well past the starting time for the event to begin, officials were backstage arguing why David Nolan should not be allowed to participate. Sources say the Graf campaign graciously supported Nolan participating, but not without receiving some grief about the contract they signed for the event.

Ultimately, the event began with David Nolan on stage.

Gabby entered the debate tonight with a much softer manner than in previous debates. With the entire debate focused on education, she was expected to assume a commanding role. Instead, she peppered the audience with human interest stories to the extent that she finished several of her responses with no clear answer. Unlike her first appearance, however, she responded more naturally giving less of a sense she was using rehearsed lines.

Graf appeared confident and articulate, much more so than in the first debate. Instead of taking punch after punch from Giffords, Randy responded with a few zingers of his own and seemed to steal the debate from Gabby as the evening wore on.

A few of the highlights inlcuded a question as to whether candidates would support extending the "No Child Left Behind" act. Randy said "no". Gabby offered a number of criticisms but suggested she would modify the existing bill.

When responding to questions about education funding and the Fed's role in education, Gabby spent her time discussing "excessive" Exxon profits and her 100% rating prompting Randy to comment "I don't know if there was an answer in that."

The greatest audience reactions came from the TUSD teachers union which let out cheers when Gabby said the government needs to raise teacher salaries and when she stated that as children our mom's used to say "Eat your veggies because there's a kid starving in China" and now we should say "study hard because a kid in China wants your job," a catchphrase she used in previous debates.

The most interesting volley was when Randy commented on the money being spent on U.S. Department of Education bureaucrats who do not teach. Gabby responded with information on several department officials with classroom teaching experience stating that there are 4500 experienced professionals in the department. Randy clarified that he was talking about the amount of money and number of teachers that could be in the classroom instead of going to people to tell teachers how to teach. Interestingly, spectators appeared more impressed with the number of bureaucrats being 4500 than the points made by either candidate.

Both candidates were articulate and smooth in their delivery, but Gabby seemed to have the most difficult time getting to her answers in the time alloted instead using it up with lengthy stories or less relevant information. In a debate that should have been owned by Gabby, Randy's decisive responses gave him the upper hand.

As is usually the case, the room was filled with decided voters. Tomorrow's KUAT televised debate will have considerably more impact with viewers at all stages of deciding available to participate.


Kralmajales said...

Ok...look...she has taken it to Graf in the debates when Graf should have taken it to HER...and early. He got 7 or so chances from her and she laid into him instead of him in her.

Now...she is softening because the election is closer. She doesn't need to look tough anymore...she has already done so. Why come across shrill like Hillary Clinton a short time before the election, when you are winning?

Graf had a chance to get free press and build momentum. The stories I have read, whether you like them or not, show her looking reasonable and even attacking him when he should have been attacking her. He had a chance to use the debates to build momentum....he didn't...and now it is too late.

For Jon Kyl's sake, you better hope Randy can turn out Republican voters...I think this race could spill into Kyl's.


Anonymous said...

“now it is too late.” Please… The debates up to this point have been a waste of oxygen.

The only debate that might have the slightest impact is the one the will be televised on KUAT. They are also very good about putting their video on the web so people may view it at any time.

Kralmajales said...

It is too all are dreaming. The debates so far that have been covered in the press did NOTHING to gain Graf any ground. NO ONE that Graf needs to sway will be watching the KUAT debates. In fact, now he is forced to try to look calm and reasonable...any attacks on today's debate will solidify to any undecided voter how extreme and unreasonable Randy Graf really is.

Giffords played it perfectly. When Graf should have make a splash...she did. She brought out the most unsavory elements of his record. The things that even republicans worry about. In the end, any momentum he could have pulled...ran right out of the balloon...

Randy STILL has to look good to his own party (which should have happened a long time ago) and he should be looking for independents adn schmoozing the women who are both breaking 2-1 for Giffords.

This race is sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo


Let's talk about Kyl, shall we?

x4mr said...


Thanks so much for capturing the event. My Thursdays are spoke for.

Based on what you wrote and the apparent lack of press coverage (as far as I have seen), it sounds like the event will have as little if not less impact on the election as Tuesdays.

Agree with what some have said that the KUAT event might have more meaning, as it will make television and also be available online as a video in the final week before the election.

I think something extraordinary in tonight's debate could have some impact.

Roger, do you really want to talk about Kyl? Well, what can you say about a man that refuses to share any info on what he eats?

What's for Lunch?"

x4mr said...

Oh, forgot to add that there is a fabulous sleeper film that adds to the mystery of Kyl's culinary secrets.

Marco Alatorre said...

Kralmajales , you seem to be cheering for Giffords like one would cheer for a footbell team.

Life isn't a football game! There are consequences after this election is over.

Have you given any thought to what a disaster Giffords would be in Congress?

She would march in lock step with Pelosi, Kennedy, Schumer et al. .. all extreme leftists.

Maybe you haven't thought about an agenda that would mean steal from the middle class and give to special interests.

Giffords is a multi millionare, do you really think she is going to tax the rich?

Do you know anything about Gabrielle Giffords as a person?

Did you know that she recently rear ended a minority U of A student in her car and when he got out of the car and showed her that he had hurt his neck and wanted to call the police she refused and kept talking on her cell phone?

She told him that it was just a minor accident and that she had to get going. And when he again asked her to call the police she asked him "do you know who I am?"

Can you Imagine her arrogance?

To ask "do you know who I am?" to someone that she has just injured in an auto accident?

Like her time was worth more than making sure that this injured student was OK and had proper documentation of his injury for his insurance.

She had to be asked to call the police a dozen times before she called the cops and then she was cited for speeding.

Gabrielle Giffords is just another spoiled rich kid who is pretending to be for the common man.

Make no mistake, she is a liberal masquerading as a moderate who will tax the middle class, not the rich, in order to achieve her liberal agenda.

Marco Alatorre said...

Gabrielle Giffords would vote to ban guns

Gabrielle Giffords is no moderate. She is a liberal, anti-gunner who has stated that she would vote to reauthorize the Clinton Gun Ban, which expired in September 2004.

This ill conceived piece of legislation banned guns based on purely cosmetic features. If a certain gun looks a certain way, then that gun would be banned. At the same time, many guns that were functionally identical to the banned guns remained legal.

And what is the rationale for banning firearms based on mere cosmetic features? The answer lies in the politics of gun control. While it is currently politically impractical to ban all firearms, the foot in the door is to ban those firearms that look "evil". The idea is to tell the public that only "evil" guns are being banned. Then, after the public has become used to the ban of evil guns, you come back for a second pass. You say that many guns have slipped through a "loophole" in the law and these guns that slipped through the loophole are functionally identical to the banned, evil guns and therefore they also should also be banned. Aren't anti-gunners clever!

So, when Gabrielle Giffords says that she would vote to reauthorize the Clinton Gun Ban, she is really admitting that she intends to support a broad attack on all firearms ownership nationwide. Yes, she intends to ban firearms. Yes, she is anti-gun. And yes, she is a liberal pretending to be a moderate.

The Clinton Gun Ban made no sense and finally, even the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms has admitted that it had no effect of crime. Yet Gabrielle Giffords has stated that she would vote to reauthorize such a senseless law that serves no purpose other than to advance the cause of gun control.

Anonymous said...


I agree Pelosi and Kennedy are pretty far onthe left. Giffords is not. Any independent body you want to name rates her as moderate. The only people who seem to consider her “extreme” are R’s who are, themselves, pretty far on the right side of the spectrum.

The reverse is not true. Many independent bodies consider Graf “extreme”.

Further, why should I somehow be scared by the notion of Giffords voting with her party if she’s elected? Like the Republicans haven’t been doing exactly that for six years? How do you think the name “rubber-stamp Congress” was derived in the first place? The current Republican majority votes as a bloc in percentages of historic proportions.

Giffords most certainly is NOT a multi-millionaire. Her parents are. She is not.

She did have a fender-bender. GIffords was cited (for doing about 2 miles an hour when she should have been doing 0 - technically, that’s excessive speed at a stop light.). Since you weren’t there, everything else you note about it is pure speculation. I could easily make up a story that makes Giffords look like a saint and hte gentleman in question a thug ... wouldn't be any more factual than your piece of fiction, but might be better written, who knows.

Anonymous said...

Giffords is no moderate. Writing and sponsoring a bill on Assisted Suicide is not moderate. Ms. Giffords work on this bill was highly praised in the newsletter by the Hemlock Society (now they have some new more PC name which I can't remember).

sirocco said...

Like most people, Giffords views on some items might be termed extreme, and on others moderate.

She tends towards more of the latter than the former.

Graf, of course, is well known for his "moderate" views ... or maybe not.

Marco Alatorre said...

Most Democrats would not state that they are for reauthorizing the Clinton Gun Ban, only extremists like Pelosi, Feinstein, Schumer, Kennedy and GIFFORDS would hold such a position. How can you say that it is not extreme to want to ban firearms based purely on the way they look?.

You ask "why should I somehow be scared by the notion of Giffords voting with her party if she’s elected?"

The answer is: Because she has admitted that she is an extremist by saying that she would vote to ban guns based solely on the way they look. Therefore she has already admitted that she will will march in lock step with the most extreme wing of your party. And experience has shown that your your party will rubber stamp this position like they did with the 1994 Clinton Gun Ban.

Gabrielle Giffords is a managing partner of El Campo Property Rentals, L.L.P through Giffords MAnagement Group, L.L.C. These groups hold title to a vast amount of commercial real estate. Legally she is an owner of all of these properties. That makes her a multi millionaire. In addition she is manager of Giffords Capital Management L.L.C., whose assets are more hidden.

How many poor folk are manager of three limited liability companies that together own tens of millions worth of real estate?

As to the fender bender, she hit him and wouldn't get off the cell phone long enough to call the police. She acted like the spoiled child, telling him it was only minor and didn't he know she was the great Gabrielle Giffords, and he was wasting her time. She had no time to show some common courtesy for someone she injured.

Gabrielle Giffords is, as I said, a spoiled, rich kid who cares nothing for the common man.

Gabrielle Giffords is an extremist who has admitted that she would vote to ban guns solely based on the way they look, a position taken only by extreme elements od the Dem party.

Anonymous said...

I think you might have something there, Sirocco. Giffords is not "extreme" on anything, she is one of those politicians who tells you what you want to hear. Which ever way the wind blows, Gabby goes with it.
She talks tough on immigration, yet uses the word "knowingly" when discussing employer sanctions (verbage such as this is what created the loophole in the Simpson-Mazzoli Amnesty of 1986).
On Iraq, during the primary she was for pulling out by the end of 2007, now it is just a strategy.
She is for tax cuts for the middle class, yet voted against tax cuts while serving in the legislature (including one giving a tax cut for up to $250.00 for teachers purchasing their classroom supplies).
She was a proud member of the ACLU and served on their Southern Arizona Board of Directors, a service which is now mysteriously missing from her website.
Gabrielle is not "extreme", by her actions and her words she has shown us that all she is, is another politician who will say anything to get elected.

Liza said...

Well, guys, this is one of your better discussions but the bottom line is that we have to go to the election with the candidates we have, to paraphrase Rummy.

The message here is that we need better candidates, if we want to be represented. I think we should be fighting for clean elections at the federal and term limits.

Kralmajales said...

Ya'll I would much rather have a thoughtful, intelligent, moderate like Giffords than an extremist. She has never said she would ban guns...come on! Ridiculous. Although, I know that some do think that even restricting the right to carry guns in bars is essentially banning guns. We may just be far apart on the issues.

I think Randy Graf is far far apart from most Americans and most Arizonans on most issues.

Take the war in Iraq as just one example. His rhetoric is the "cut and run" phrase that even George Bush and his administration is backing away from right now.

Giffords will not vote in lock step with anyone. Will she be more liberal than Graf, well yes. MOST people are more liberal than Graf.

Graf was very articulate and he is no dummy. What he articulates, however, is not what most Americans believe in. It is what this election is about and is trying to reject. The extreme conservatism that some hold on to and that has led to a horrible war that has cost Americans dearly.

I would much rather have a thoughtful, smart, Congresswoman who would think about and consider issues than one who is doctrinaire. Graf just is. Again, he is not dumb, its just that most Americans do not agree with him on most issues.

It is why he will lose a Republican planned and stacked district.

Kralmajales said...

Oh...I find it funny to hear people call Gabrielle Giffords a spoiled little rich girl when most of the Republican party is that of millionaires who spend their money and power making more money, defrauding good hardworking people out of their pensions (Enron, Worldcom), and who use their influence in secret (ILLEGALLY) to funnel government contracts (that is NOT the market my lovlies...that is this side of Socialism) to their powerful friends.

Delay, Abramoff, Ralph Reed, Ney, now Renzi, Hayworth has ties, etc.

To the amazing person that clearly is looking out for the little guy...the hardworking man and woman who go to work with a lunchpail:

How you can stand by and vote for this party? How can you do it with a straight face? We are just beginning to learn how these Republicans screwed over the Christian Coalition (and how they laughed at them in the White House) so that they could make a buck?

The most loyal part of the Republican base was essentially spit on by Reed and the White House.

They are NOT the party of the average American. They use you and laugh at you when they make their backroom deals.

Marco Alatorre said...


You don't believe that Gabrielle Giffords said she would vote to reauthorize the Clinton Gun Ban and thereby ban guns?

Check out this link and note Gabrielle Giffords' answer to question #3

Then come back here and deny that Gabrielle Giffords would vote to ban guns.

The fact is that Gabby would vote to ban guns. She would vote in lock step with the same extreme liberals who supported the Clinton Gun Ban in 1994

Just think about what this means to you. If you own a gun that is on the banned list you are now a criminal. And for what?

Think about the fact that possession of contraband gives the police the right to throw a flash bang grenade through your front window and kick down your door to come and search for the banned gun.

In one such case, shortly after passage of the Clinton Gun Ban, the BATF forceably entered a gun owner's home with machine guns pointing at every person. One of the family kittens was so scared that it hissed at one of the ATF agents. And what did the agent do? She stomped on the kitten and kicked it across the room!

Also consider what might happen if the police get the wrong address. Now they might accidentally kick your door down as well. And all for what?

Gabrielle Giffords is no friend of the people. She has such callous disregard for the rights and safety of the citizens that she would glibly state that she would vote to ban guns.

Regarding Graf, he is no millionaire. And he hasn't defrauded millions out of their pensions. In fact, those Enron and Worldcom criminals you mention oppose Graf because he has principles and he won't march to their tune.

Graf is not a Washington insider. He has been totally honest and upfront about his positions.

Gabby, on the other hand, has constantly tried to change her position to appeal to voters. She just says what she thinks the voters want to hear.

sirocco said...


Giffords father is the controlling partner in those partnerships you refer to. The daughter being on them provides for certain inheritence rights in case he dies, but at this point in time she derives no income on them, and has no actual title to them.

Meaning she is not, in fact, a multi-millionaire. She may be when both her parents die, but hopefully that day is still far in the future.

I think you miss my point regarding extremism -- even if one were to accept Giffords as "extreme" (which I don't believe is generally the case, as per my previous comment), she is certainly no more extreme in her positions than Graf is in his.

As such, if I must have an "extremist" representing me, I'll take the ones who's viewas most mirror mine (and those of the district), which to my mind (and as every poll has so far indicated) is Giffords.

You keep repeating that story about the gentleman who was apparently hospitalized in critical condition from a 2 mph bump while Giffords remained on the phone, maybe you can convince someone other than yourself.

Marco Alatorre said...

Well Sirocco,

Let me put it this way, If Gabrielle Giffords were to lose a lawsuit and have judgement against her, that judgement could be satisfied by confiscation of her shares in the Giffords LLC's, which would exceed several million dollars. That is the level to which she has ownership. She actually does have title.

So, maybe you favor banning guns, but the district does not.

sirocco said...


Nope, not the way the partnership is structured, or the rules it operates under. You are entirely incorrect on that point.

I don't favor banning guns, neither does Giffords, although she does favor what I consider reasonable limits (and you would not).

Kralmajales said...

Hell yeah I favor banning assault weapons! Hell ya! I don't favor banning MOST guns but those that can do real harm to real people and that are not used for hunting, sport, or protection (save for those who want assault weapons to go after our OWN government).

So what? Do you want those guns to fall in the hands of the terrorists? Those terrorists are here and are going to get them and are gonna use em on us...yes they are. They can just say 2nd Amendment allowed me to get a gun and armor piercing bullents needed to go after the very FBI, ATF, and Homeland Security employees we are trying to help fight them off.

Be reasonable. Come on. She does not favor banning all guns.

Thank god that most hunters and sport folks don't think like you.

We have to be reasonable. Being doctrinaire like Randy Graf does not mean we are safe. Guns in bars (against the will of the bar owner...) is NOT NOT smart...and is not anything but extremist.

But best to you anyhow.

Anonymous said...

The republicans and democrats have won again. I read you words and realize you are distracted from the real issues. Please send a message! Stop being cattle...


hk usp said...


Your comments are usually fairly intelligent so I was very surprised to read your words above.

If you want ban a certain type of firearm fine. You advocate banning guns “that can do real harm to real people” but say you don’t want to ban hunting or sport firearms. One of the most popular hunting calibers of all time is the .30-’06. Most hunters put a scope on top of their rifle. Believe me that set up can do real harm to real people. So can a 270, 300 Win Mag, 243 or any number of popular rifle calibers. I have seen deer shot once with a 280 Remington drop dead to the ground within a second of being hit. The same thing would happen to a human.

Last I read about Ruby Ridge and Waco was that the ATF and FBI are a lot more interested in sniping and burning women and children than going after terrorists.

You say a so-called “assault rifle” can fire more bullets. Have you ever fired an 03 Springfield with stripper clips? You can really lay down some lead. How about the stupid provision in the Clinton gun ban that limited pistol magazines to 10 rounds. Carry a few more clips and the situation is just as deadly.

The true objective of gun control is to disarm the citizenry. If you do not believe me then study what happened in the U.K, Canada, and Australia, and New Zealand. Oh and what is crime like in Mexico, were the citizens (and the police) have no chance against the heavily armed drug lords?

I understand who is a hunter but what is a “sport folk?”

Kralmajales said...

I agree with much of what you said about all guns can harm people and I have shot a 30'06 and, yep, that can put a hole in something.

What most reasonable people are thinking about guns is not to ban them or disarm the citizenry, but to at least have a method for tracking them and even carefully considering what modifications to guns can be made to make them more like assault rifles, automatics, etc.

I know people kill people, not guns. I don't like one extreme or the other. I would not want a ban (nor does Giffords) but I also don't want complete, unrestricted access to the most dangerous of weapons. I don't want them falling into the hands of murderers, terrorists, or anyone who can easily use them to shoot people.

It seems to me that the "tough rhetoric on terrorists" and "free and open access to guns" arguments just don't mix. and that seems to be Randy's position.

Those who think that guns and alcohol don't mix, and that cops should have a measure of protection against those who might be able to carry more firepower, and that unrestricted access to firearms can lead to an easy day for terrorists, should not consider voting for Randy Graf.

Giffords is very reasonable on guns and Randy (again) is too far to the right.

Marco Alatorre said...

You miss the point Kralmajales.

The point is all guns are pretty much equally capable of harming people. The Clinton Assault Weapons Ban didn't ban guns based on deadliness, it banned guns based on how they looked. It banned guns that were no more deadly that guns that were not banned.

You state that "what most reasonable people are thinking about guns is not to ban them or disarm the citizenry, but to at least have a method for tracking them and even carefully considering what modifications to guns can be made to make them more like assault rifles, automatics, etc."

Do you realize that what you are talking about is gun registration?

Are you saying that Gabrielle Giffords would vote for gun registration?

sirocco said...


So let me get this straight ... you favor laws that strengthen the ID requirement to vote, but don't favor strengthen the requirements needed to own something that actually can, you know, kill people?

I don't know actually if Giffords favors gun registration, but I sure as hell hope she does.

Kralmajales said...

Me too Sirocco. Frankly, I can't believe that any terrorist fighting republican wouldn't agree with that now also. THEY have been the ones telling us that we have to sacrifice deeply and give up some freedoms to keep America safe.

Well here is just the opportunity! Instead, they want to listen in on our phone calls without even the check of a warrant or a basic review to be sure they aren't trying to silence political opponents as well.

They want to deny due proces rights to even Americans who are accused of terrorism.

But guns...OH NO...NEVER OUR GUNS.

Marco Alatorre said...

Sirocco and Kralmajales,

We already have very strict laws regarding firearms purchases. You can't buy a gun unless you can pass instant background check. What is the purpose of further restrictions once you pass instant check?

And what good does gun registration do? You register a gun to a legal owner, what good does this do?

No, the reason liberals want gun registration is to compile a database of where to go to confiscate the guns. This already happened it California. It started with registration of so called "assault weapons". Then when law abiding gun owners complied, the law was changed and these gun owners who had registered their guns, all received a letter from the attorney general demanding they turn the guns in, take them out of state or be prosecuted!

Gun registration is the first step to gun confiscation.

Oh, and by the way guys, I am not a Republican.

And by analogy, since cars kill so many people each year, why is it that you don't favor increased restrictions on the purchase of a car? Hell, any 16 year old kid can buy a car no questions asked! And it it the teenagers that cause the most accidents.

Gabrielle Giffords is a true enemy of gun owners. She is rated F by the NRA. She would try to ban guns.

Randy Graf is rated A+ by NRA. He is a true friend of gun owners.

sirocco said...


You are, of course, correct in the ratings of Giffords and Graf by the NRA, and if my sole decision-factor for the election was who will most freely allow me to buy a machine-gun and tote it around town, I would vote for Graf too.

A difference between guns and cars is a matter of necessity. Yes, I could use public transportation for some things, but it would be inconvenient bordering on impossible. For other matters, it would be impossible. Cars make many things which would otherwise be impractical, practical.

On the other hand, I can't think of anything within the normal every-day routine of most individuals for which a gun is necessary or makes things substantially easier.

The NICS is far, far better than nothing, but makes no claim to being thorough. No 30-second check can.

Further, at least with a car a user is required to regularly pass a licensing exam, etc. No such constraint exists for a gun (unless you wish to carry one in public, concealed or otherwise). Let me repeat that -- you can "operate" a gun without any licensing or training whatsoever.

Finally, once again extending your logic, all those people wanting ID requirements tightened up for voting MUSt be doing it because they want to make sure they can find us and take us away when they need to, right?

You do have to register a car, and registering a gun doesn't seem like an unreasonable burden to me.