Monday, November 1, 2010

My Ballot Picks

I've been trying really hard this election to stay up to speed on the candidates and I've been doing pretty well. The night before the election I thought I'd might finalize my picks in one post.

My general strategy is to vote Democrat, although in this post I'll tell you the elections I think where the candidates are pretty even.

For reference, here are my propositions.

Here are the Arizona Republic's picks

On to my picks:

My Ballot

PositionMy VoteArizona Republic's OpinonBrief Explanation
SenateRodney GlassmanJohn McCainRodney Glassman is young, inexperienced, from a rich family, has some question marks in his past, but he's also smart, energetic, polished, and confident. John McCain brought Sarah Palin to the world and may do his part to end it if for some odd chance Palin wins the presidency in 2012. His presidential campaign, in a word, was awful. He's also changing course on a number of issues, trying desperately to reincarnate himself into the Rush Limbaugh of the Senate. This is really more of a no vote against McCain than a yes vote for Glassman (McCain is someone I've really, really liked in the past, so I'm sad to see McCain's career turn this way).
Congressional District 5Harry Mitchell
David SchweikertThis is one of those elections where two really pretty good candidates are running against each other. Harry Mitchell has a long, deep and substantive record in local politics. A longtime teacher at Tempe High, the mayor of Tempe, a state legislature, and a Congressman for two terms. He's a moderate all the way, every bill he's authored has had Republican co-signers. I'm voting for him because he voted for Obamacare, despite some of his misgivings, he did what was right.

Schweikert is young, energetic and a fiscal conservative. I trust (though not sure) he would be sincere in his attempts to act as a counter-weight to Obama's spending. I'm voting for Mitchell, but Schweikert should be a better representative than J.D. Hayworth (who Mitchell beat in 2006) if he were to win. For now, I believe the election is too close to call.
GovernorTerry GoddardJan BrewerJan Brewer was not prepared to take over when Napolitano left, but after a slow start she's been competent. I abhorred the 1070b signing, but she did defend it with passion. Goddard, though, is a much more competent governor who would defend our schools in the face of a legislature who will try their hardest to cut its funding. The state is facing hard times right now. The schools are already scraping by. Goddard is in a better position to do the right thing.
Secretary of StateChris DescheneKen BennettThis one is a tossup election for me and admittedly Ken Bennett has more direct experience and is better prepared to take over as governor if for some reason he's called upon. Both seem qualified to assume the responsibilities of Secretary of State. I want greater participation in the elections and I trust Deschene will work harder to reach out to the disenfranchised. I'm going with Deschene.
TreasurerAndrei CherneyDoug DuceyI agree with Ducey ideologically more than I do with Cherney. I just trust Cherney more than I do Ducey. My heart and gut over rule my head on this one.
Attorney GeneralFelicia RotelliniFelicia RotelliniWow, the Arizona Republic finally agrees with me :-). This is a no-brainer. Tom Horne is a strong candidate, although he does have a lifetime ban from the SEC (for something he did 40 years ago - but still). But this is more about Rotellini - she's incredible, highly qualified, with a sterling record. Arizona would really muff this one if they chose Horne over Rotellini.
School SuperintendentPenny KottermanJohn HuppenthalAnother no brainer. If you're a school reform ideologue with no faith in teachers or administrators and all it takes to run our schools is in-depth knowledge on the latest research (no matter how sketchy or politicized) - Huppenthal is your guy. He's never taught school, but has a long record writing legislative bills on school policy. Kotterman has been an instructor and a administrator, has a deep knowledge of school issues and a comprehensive view on how to improve them. This choice should also be a no brainer.
Corporation CommisionGary Pierce and David BradleyGary Pierce and Brenda BurnsThere are three really qualified candidates running from my view (the second Democrat unfortunately passed away). I prefer a little more emphasis on renewable energy than the Republicans will bring to the table, but I'll be happy no matter what happens here I'm sure.
Central Arizona Water Conservation District"Tim Bray, Frank Fairbanks, Jim Holway, Arif Kazmi, Sid WilsonSameI'm placing my trust in the AZ Republic on this one. There are some tea-party candidates running who just want to cut costs and have no background or experience with water. Be sure to avoid those folks.
State Mining InspectorManuel CruzJoe HartTwo good candidates - one is focused more on advocacy for mining in the state, the other is more focused on regulation and safety. I'm going for the second.
Legislative District 17 - SenateDavid SchapiraDavid SchapiraDavid Shapira is much more qualified and knowledgeable on the issues than Wendy Rogers. Rogers skipped their one debate and has a pretty narrow view of the issues facing Arizona generally. Shapira is by far the better choice.
Legislative District 17 - HouseEd Ableser and Ben ArredondoEd Ableser and Ben ArredondoI never did getting around to blogging about this race. The Republicans did not field anybody even worth mentioning once Steve May dropped out (he was kind of a joke as well). Its inexplicable - this district has plenty of Republicans living in it and we've had substantive Republicans representing it in the past. Ben Arredondo is a rock and the better of the two. Ed Ableser is energetic although a bit idealistic apparently.
County AttorneyBill Montgomery Bill Montgomery I really like Rick Romley who lost to him in the primaries. There are no Democrats running. Montgomery was endored by Arpiro which is a big negative for me, but I'm assuming he's competent enough for the position.
Clerk of the Superior CourtMichael JeanesMichael JeanesGoing with the AZ Republic on this one
Justice of the Peace - KyreneElizabeth RogersUnknownShe's the incumbent and the Democrat
ConstableJon LevensonUnknownI've met him and his sign is in my yard.
High School Governing BoardDave Wells and David SchapiraUnknownDave Wells is a professor at ASU and seems knowledgeable and energetic. Schapira is also running for the the Senate (part time position) and can use his influence to help Tempe High schools


H said...

Thanks for the ideas Scott, I like much of your reasoning. I was debating a straight democratic ticket, just to be spiteful and because I'm lazy this year. I can't get myself to do it though. I will probably vote all the judges out though, just in case none of them deserve to stay :)

tempe turley said...

Yeah, I'm skipping the judges - no time to research them this year.

Sara said...

I'll tell ya lazy...I'm printing this out and using it as my sample ballot!