Posts Tagged ‘Tom Forese’
Doug Ducey won a commanding victory in Tuesday’s Arizona Republican primary election. It was the most crowded Republican primary for Governor in state history, and yet Ducey won by an astounding 15 points. He exceeded everyone’s expectations, including mine.
Now Ducey faces Fred DuVal in November. Polling shows this race as basically tied with a large number of undecided voters. This is not surprising, but the contours of the race haven’t really been set, so we’ll see movement in the numbers within a week or so.
The biggest upset of the night was Mark Brnovich defeating Tom Horne in the Attorney General race. Mark was outspent by a large margin, but Horne’s negatives were an anchor around his neck. Mark was a tireless campaigner with amazing energy that provided primary voters with a strong viable alternative to Horne.
The other big upset was Diane Douglas defeating Superintendent of Public Instruction John Huppenthal. It was an old-fashioned, school principal office spanking.
In the Secretary of State race, Michele Reagan won by a strong margin and will dispatch her Democrat opponent, Terry Goddard, in November giving yet another losing effort.
Jeff DeWit, the singing phenom, won big and will become the next Treasurer of Arizona because the Democrats didn’t even bother to field a candidate.
Finally, Doug Little and Tom Forese proved that running as a team has benefits – both receiving almost the exact same number of votes for Corporation Commission and will face two radical leftists for the general.
Let’s look more closely at the primary race for Governor. My firm, DC London, did independent expenditure work in the race, and one of the more satisfying outcomes was how good the polling was. We relied on two different pollsters, David Flaherty at Magellen Strategies and Brock McCleary at Harper Polling. Below is a chart of the two latest polls by each of them respectively and the election result.
Aug. 19-20 (Harper)
Aug. 25 (Magellan)
The most interesting thing in looking at the polls and the results of Tuesday is that Ducey captured the majority of the late undecided voters. Those late deciders have by described by the late political wizard Steve Shadegg as “Indifferents.” The Indifferents are people who don’t really pay attention to politics and may or may not vote. They usually make up their mind in the last three days or so of an election. In this day and age with early voting, some of them are the folks who get their early ballot, set it on the counter and then realize weeks later on Election Day they need to fill it out and drop it off at the polling location.
They are important voters because in close elections, they determine the outcome. Ducey didn’t need them to break heavily in his favor, but it turns out they did, which created a spike in his numbers.
In a six-way race, it is unusual for one candidate to get the majority of the undecided. In Ducey’s case, he added four percent to his margin, leaving only three percent of the vote to go to other candidates. Interestingly, the beneficiaries of those remaining voters were Thomas and Riggs, although it did them no good.
Now the Democrats will begin to spin that they are in a strong position to win these statewide races. Obviously, I beg to differ.
Ducey has won statewide in a general and has become a very strong candidate. DuVal has run for office once before, and it didn’t work out well. He finished 4th in a Congressional primary in which he garnered a whopping 8,600 votes. Not much of a base of support to jump into the big leagues. He will actually suffer from not having had a primary opponent. He and his campaign will likely make a couple missteps that they wouldn’t otherwise make as a result of not being in a day-to-day battle.
Felicia Rotellini couldn’t beat Tom Horne when he was weakened by some scandal four years ago. She will have a difficult time matching Brnovich’s energy and passion.
Michele Reagan is a bright star in state politics and voters will go with her youthful enthusiasm over perennial candidate Terry Goddard.
When it’s all said and done, Arizona will remain a strong Republican state for the next four years.
My firm, DC London, commissioned a Arizona primary election poll of likely voters in the Republican primary next Tuesday.
Ducey – 32%
Smith – 19%
Jones – 16%
Bennett – 14%
Thomas – 7%
Riggs – 2%
Undecided – 10%
At this point, Ducey is all but assured a victory. The only question is how will the rest of the field shape up. My prediction is that Jones has a little surge at the end and captures the second place spot, while Smith continues to slide and ends up in 3rd. The greatest mystery of this election, for me, is what happened to Ken Bennett? He started the race with the most name ID and at 15% of the vote (which at the time was way ahead of everyone else) but he has not moved the needle even a little.
Brnovich – 40%
Horne – 37%
Undecided – 24%
Given that Horne has essentially 100% name ID, the majority of the 24% of undecided are likely to go to Brnovich – so I suspect Brnovich will win by more than six points.
Secretary of State
Reagan – 32%
Pierce – 30%
Cardon – 15%
Undecided – 23%
This race will likely be the one that goes later into the evening before we know the winner. Reagan’s small lead is within the margin of error, so it’s a toss up.
DeWit – 23%
Pullen – 21%
Hallman – 19%
Undecided – 37%
This statewide race has the largest number of undecided voters, so it really could go about any way at this point. DeWit is getting a bit of attention with this video that has the makings of going viral.
Superintendent of Public Instruction
Douglas – 39%
Huppenthal – 34%
Undecided – 28%
It appears that the anti-Common Core message is resonating for little-known Diane Douglas and I think she will upset Huppenthal.
(Combined total for first choice and second choice)
Little – 43%
Forese – 35%
Mason – 34%
Parker – 31%
While the second position appears to be a toss up between Forese and Mason, it’s clear that Little will win and Parker will lose. The decision by the pro-solar folks to try to demonize Little as a “lap dog” and somehow supportive of Obama, seems to have backfired. And the hits on Parker by the Free Enterprise Club appear to be working. So the two candidates who have largely been ignored, find themselves basically tied. Will make for an interesting night.
Arizona has had a lively Republican primary this year. Here are my endorsements for statewide office:
Governor – Doug Ducey
Doug Ducey is the most exciting candidate for Governor we in Arizona have had in a long, long time. This is an easy call. Why? He is a successful business leader, a strong conservative, a man of faith, and, most of all, a genuinely great human being. And, his opponents just don’t stack up.
*Disclaimer – I am the Chairman of Conservative Leadership for Arizona, an Independent Expenditure Committee formed to support Doug Ducey for Governor. Of course, I wouldn’t have done that if I didn’t completely support Doug, but figured I’d give the disclaimer anyway.
Secretary of State – Justin Pierce
Pierce is a very capable leader who is an up-and-comer in Republican politics. He deserves your vote.
Wil Cardon does not rise to the level of a serious candidate.
Attorney General – Mark Brnovich
I have often commented that Mark Brnovich will be the most qualified individual to ever walk into the AG’s office on the first day. He is a constitutional scholar, a former prosecutor, former head of a state department, and a tireless advocate for freedom. He will be a breath of fresh air so sorely needed in the AG’s office.
Tom Horne has abused his office and, if by some miracle he wins the primary, will lose badly to Democrat candidate Felicia Rotellini in the General Election.
*Disclaimer – Mark Bronivch is a client of my firm, DC London. For what it’s worth, I was supportive of Mark running for AG long before he became a client.
State Treasurer – Jeff DeWit
Current State Treasurer Doug Ducey has done a great job running the treasurer’s office, but if you listened to Hugh Hallman or Randy Pullen, you’d think it was a mess. Jeff DeWit is the only candidate who acknowledges that things are working well in the treasurer’s office and will carry that legacy forward. He has the right kind of background for managing the state’s investments and will serve well. He is another strong rising star for the Republican Party.
Corporation Commission – Doug Little and Tom Forese
The corporation commission race this year is a team effort. Doug Little and Tom Forese are running as a team and Lucy Mason and Vernon Parker are running as a team.
The Mason/Parker team feels like the resurrection of the Democrat team from 2012 of Busching, Newman and Kennedy that dubbed themselves “Arizona’s Solar Team.” Mason and Parker are unabashedly supportive of taxpayers subsidizing the solar industry and have been supported by the solar industry. Billionaire crony king, Elon Musk, is the majority shareholder of a company called SolarCity – a rooftop solar system leasing company that is completely dependent on government subsidies to stay afloat.
Given my strong opposition to subsidies and special treatment by government, I think it would be bad for Arizona to elected Mason and Parker.