Thursday, January 17, 2008

A Bee Choice

This is a fascinating announcement and commentary posted on Sonoran Alliance regarding the Bee campaign's new pick for a third vice-chairman.

The first pick, Jim Click, was clearly symbolic in an effort to assure would-be contributors that Bee has the big money backing him. The second chairman, or co-chairman, Sandy Froman, is believed by many to be an effort to pull in northwest side activists as well as the conservatives due to Sandy's standing as the NRA Past-president and the respect she commands in her own district.

The reason for Jim Kolbe as a third co-chairman is much less apparent. If it's for the purpose of drawing in NRCC support, considering the substantial shift that has occurred in the NRCC since the Kolbe-Huffman fiasco of '06, we're left scratching our heads. Kolbe's joining the Giffords campaign during the last election has seriously weakened his least in the GOP, which further whittles down that chip.

In speculating on the motives of this move, it may be useful to assess the cost of these decisions. Although, Jim Click has stirred up plenty of controversy lately, the cost of his involvement is probably mostly offset by his ability to bring financial backing to the campaign. Sandy carries no baggage in the party and can only be a plus albeit not likely in the way the campaign anticipated. Nobody would argue that Kolbe, however, doesn't alienate a substantial percentage of party activists and members, regardless of who they supported in the CD8 Primary election.

How this will affect the Bee campaign, as a net positive or negative, remains to be seen. Perhaps it will become more apparent after Bee's announcement.


x4mr said...

Good post. I share your confusion.

Over at Sonoran Alliance they are almost foaming at the mouth. As I said there, the blogosphere is much more intense and aware than the regular population.

Karl Rove noted this week that whoever gets the presidential nomination for the GOP needs to "introduce himself" to the country.

Why? Because NO ONE except folks like us are paying attention.

Bee has his reasons. He did not make the move lightly. Bee, a seasoned and intelligent politician, weighed the payoffs and the costs.

Anonymous said...

Kolbe will be able to bring back to Bee (and the Republican Party) the Republicans and Republican-leaning Independents that Randy Graf lost in 2006. It's a very smart move- one that should pay off in November.

Touchdown said...

It's all about the General Election. This was Kolbe's seat for 22 years and Kolbe's support will help Bee.

Anonymous said...

I would agree with TR and PC.

Kolbe knows the district better than anyone from having represented it for so many years and that knowledge is necessary for Bee, who I don't think has ever had a serious campaign and has only represented his small piece of the district.

What is most curious though is that the border hawks in the party are not going to be too thrilled when they realize that Jim Click is behind Wake Up Arizona and the war on employer sanctions...and Kolbe was about the same on the border as Bee's opponent.

They are both viewed under the lens of "amnesty" by many in the GOP.

I am not sure about Sandy Froman.

Anonymous said...

With a showing of about 20 'voters' in the Sierra Vista announcement Saturday, we can assume his moves to include Click and Kolbe have not encouraged a great following in Cochise County.

People keep pointing out that Kolbe was in office 22 years, but they don't point out that he was originally and for many years a conservative. Remember he originally ran as a married man with children. Once he changed his lifestyle, he became more and more liberal until finally the voters had had more than enough. Giffords promised conservative 'fixes' but has not found a liberal issue since that she hasn't happily embraced. Why would anyone change from Gifford's brand to Bee's offers when the only difference may be gender?

Graf did very well, the first time around against Kolbe in Cochise County. It was only when he seemed to weaken on some core conservative issues that he did not do as well.

Unfortunately, altho' Arizona is a conservative state, Tucson is a pit of liberalism, making District 8 a Schizo district.
Nevertheless, there ARE conservative living there and there could be a coalition with Cochise County if any politician had the guts to take a chance at it.