Eprof: Arizona Blue?

By Eprof2, a Trail Mix Contributor

Craig asked me last week if Arizona could flip to blue in November. My initial reaction was not likely. But, in this topsy-turvy election of 2016, I guess anything is possible. There isn’t any clear evidence, thus far, that Arizona will go blue in November.

The AZ primary for all offices excluding presidential candidates, which were held in March, takes place on August 30th. All eyes are on the McCain campaign as he seeks reelection for the sixth time to the Senate. He is still well liked in AZ, but he could be vulnerable.

kelliwardMcCain’s Republican opponent at the end of the month is a Tea Party activist, Kelli Ward, who holds a legislative seat from the Lake Havasu area, a rural northwest location far from the two metro areas. However, she is an ardent supporter of Donald Trump, who won the AZ Republican presidential primary by a huge margin. Her campaign posters are all over the state with her picture with Donald Trump. As almost everyone knows, here and across the country, Donald Trump attacked John McCain as a loser from a POW camp. That garnered a lot of support for McCain here in AZ. Yet, McCain continues to endorse Trump while calling him out for his attacks on the Khans and the Veterans’ Administration, McCain’s favorite government agency.

While folks here keep asking why doesn’t McCain “unendorsed” Trump, I think the following is occurring: McCain is going to continue to endorse Trump until he can defeat Kelli Ward in the primary; thus, not giving up any support from the far right now. After the primary, McCain will be more free to criticize Trump, maybe even “unendorsed” him, to move back to the center and try and take votes away from the presumptive Democratic candidate, Ann Kirkpatrick, a centrist who currently holds the Congressional District One seat. McCain is playing the ultimate political game of seeking votes by changing his positions based on candidates, elections, and the mood of the electorate.

mccainCampThe AZ Congressional delegation is split 5-4 in favor of Republicans. This year, depending on the Trump phenomenon, only the CD1, where I live, is in danger of losing a seat to the Republican Party, making the next delegation, 6-3. The Democrats do not have a strong, well-known candidate to replace Ann Kirkpatrick as she seeks McCain’s Senate seat. CD1 is the largest district in the state and runs from the Utah border to the Mexican border with mostly small towns. Flagstaff and parts of Casa Grande and Tucson (small parts) are inside the badly gerrymandered district. Trump and former governor, Jan Brewer, are supporting the Pinal County Sheriff, Paul Babeu, who has always been considered Joe Arpaio junior, as he continues to berate Mexicans and the border fence is his symbol of law and order. He has been elected twice to the Sheriff’s office as a Republican.

The state legislature is solidly Republican, as are all the state-wide offices, including the governor. The state treasurer, Jeff DeWitt, just became Trump’s national campaign finance director, without giving up his state position. He says he can do both jobs, i.e, he wants to keep his state salary while working for Trump. Even though many have seen this as a conflict of interest, he remains in office. The Republican state legislature, most of whom support Trump, are not going to raise impeachment or other charges against him.

Flipping to blue. Not likely under normal election circumstances. What say you, Jace?

Note from Craig: Thanks to Eprof for this analysis. We welcome contributors with thoughts about important races in their regions. Simply email me for details on how to post: help@craigcrawford.com


60 thoughts on “Eprof: Arizona Blue?”

  1. Great to see you posting again, Eprof. Must say, I don’t feel strongly one way or the other about McCain’s reelection, but I am a bit tired of him.

    PatD, we had a fine time, thanks. Must brag and say I made one of my best batches of smoked ribs ever, with my home made sauce.

  2. eprof, good to hear from you and with such a well-mapped thread topic too.  a tinge of georgia o’keefe southwestern purple, if not blue, might be nice to see on the new Arizona horizon.

  3. from Bloomberg Timothy L. O’Brien (whose books include “TrumpNation: The Art of Being The Donald.”) article “The Company That Donald Trump Keeps’ among other things names some of his less reputable pals.  also more contradictions from he who calls others liars. 

  4. eonline

    “One week ago, Katy Perry was speaking at the Democratic National Convention. Now she’s paddleboarding with a naked Orlando Bloom,” Corden told his viewers. “All I want to say is: If this is the kind of America Hillary Clinton is offering, I am in—full bloom.”

  5. from fivethirtyeight:

    According to a Trump campaign memo obtained by FiveThirtyEight, the campaign pursued a highly unorthodox strategy of courting unlikely voters during the primaries, focusing on people who rarely participate in GOP primary elections. The campaign relied on free media, including Trump’s frequent TV appearances, to turn out regular voters, according to the memo.

    But survey and voter data shows that Trump won the Republican nomination thanks in large part to Republicans who typically vote in general elections, ….

    and more on the strategist “former Trump campaign staffer Matt Braynard”

  6. Holy guacamole ……E Prof is on the scene……great to see you proffesor.!!

    Nice, very detailed info from your part of the world….thanks..

    Im with Craig…..im getting very tired of John McCain…….but i do find myself on occasion defending him from very stupid attacks. I get very aggravated when someone says that he was “just a prisoner of war” and not a real soldier…..specially from some-one that has never served…….

    Trump does that often, not only with J. Mc…..but with others……dont understand why the Ds don’t pounce on that every single time they get the chance…..should be the first thing that comes out of all ds mouth, and that all those that have endorsed him, believe the same….and then go on with the topic of the day….like i said……great to see you…..later

  7. Patd, HI, kiddo….glad to see that you think that im a fair solar- ray……..i try to burn every one…..jussssst right…..but i think that i have an advantage over most people in that department….im an independent…you i wont even try to burn at all…..but watch out for my ultra rays…..sometimes they get a little out of  control………

  8. “made one of my best batches of smoked ribs ever, with my home made sauce”

    craig, according to these guys, which state describes your sauce

  9. Another book I recommend for those who are inclined to not be embarrassed by a sip of more than sweet tea with lunch, The Incurable Filibuster, Adventure of Col. Dean Ivan Lamb 1934, Farrer & Rhinehart. A bit hard to find, but worth the extra $$. True or not, the guy did imbibe.

    The coming explosion or implosion should be very impressive. Much has been bottled up for almost two days, and from past experience we can be assured that is not without great and exciting release. Chernobyl was bottled up and it almost did a melt to the core. It is almost time to go and snoop around the red sites, just to see the panic of course.

    My BBQ sauce varies as to my mood.  And if my mood is funky I will make a big pot and simmer the meat in it for a while before tossing it back on the grill.

  10. I heard someone say Arpaio is in trouble that would be sweet

    Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio promises that GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump will build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. Democratic challenger Paul Penzone appears to be 3 points ahead in the race for county sheriff.

  11. Holy Cow!!!!  Hillary is using my argument about portion markings.  Don’t know if the blog article got through or somebody on her campaign staff finally paid attention to the proper defense.

    Either way, she’s acknowledging what her “public” statements should have been, apologizing for any misunderstanding and all of it while defending herself.

    Loving this Q & A with the journalists.


  12. Jamie, that’s one reason I keep harping about this, Hillary is actually good at this, no reason not to do it some more

  13. cnn here sounds like you, craig, grousing re no press conf’s.  why don’t the 11 gaggles count?  and all those one on one interviews (like last one with faux’s Wallace)?

    Looming over Clinton’s appearance in front of a ballroom full of journalists Friday in Washington, D.C., was her relative lack of interactions with reporters.
    Clinton has emerged one of the least accessible candidates to run for president this year, rarely taking question from her traveling press corps.
    Clinton last held a formal press conference on December 4, 2015, in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Since then she had held 11 “gaggles” — or informal press conferences — taking questions from a few members of her traveling press corps. The last such huddle was on July 31 in Ashland, Ohio.
    Rather than have frequent contact with reporters, Clinton’s campaign has opted for sit-down interviews — a setting that her aides believe she is more comfortable in.

  14. What I find aggravating is that it doesn’t matter what Hillary does, the media will either back track for what she did wrong or why doesn’t she do more of this?  If there is a way to make her wrong and create the image of malfeasance all for the sake of ratings, they will.  And that includes even the reporters who are supposedly on her side.

    Today has been loaded with half sentences with all the detail and expansion cut off.

  15. Jamie, yeah it’s even her fault that she was applauded. the haters hate it when other folks don’t hate her enough to not clap at the obvious.

    from time: Hillary Clinton Q&A at Journalism Conference Draws Criticism

  16. here’s folkenflik at npr: Why Doesn’t Hillary Clinton Have More Press Conferences?

    Clinton then suggested there are other, better ways to glean insights from a candidate.

    “I was shocked myself that I’ve done nearly 300 interviews and they’re not even sure they’ve captured all the that ones I’ve done,” Clinton said. “I believe that we do and we should answer questions. Of course I’m going to, in many, many different kinds of settings.”

    Modern presidents have often sought to circumvent the filter of the traditional media. President George W. Bush relied on interviews with local television stations, while President Obama mixes up interviews with conventional outlets such as CBS News and The Atlantic with newer outlets such as Vox, BuzzFeed, Reddit, and Zach Galifianakis’ Between the Ferns. Neither view press conferences with great favor.

    And Clinton has a point: Interviews can prove illuminating.

  17. Trump is going to endorse Ryan does that mean he is unendorsing the other guy and does Ryan even want his endorsement

    he isn’t helping other candidates much

  18. boston globe:

    Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren said she believes Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton will keep her primary-era promises to support liberal positions despite her recent efforts to woo Republicans.

    “She’s trying to show the Democrats have a big tent and Republicans who are horrified by Donald Trump can find a welcome place here,” said Warren in a telephone interview with the Globe.

    “I want to underline that Secretary Clinton has laid out a very explicit agenda for president and made clear what she will stand for.”


    and on her own inaccessibility to press for which she doesn’t get castigated unlike Hillary  [from same link]:

    One aspect of Warren’s behavior may soften: her refusal to participate in so-called hallway interviews with Washington-based reporters covering the Senate.

    “We’ll have to see,” said Warren. “I’ve spent these first years focused like a laser on a core set of issues. And tried not to get distracted with offering an opinion on everything that comes along.”

    But, Warren added: “I understand the question. It is something to think about.”

    However, she still made an argument for keeping mum, noting: “My job is not to pop off on every topic that comes along.”

  19. Drinking game.  Every time Donald trump repeats a word, sentence, or talking point, take a shot or a double on the third repeat.

    Just the statement now would have had ben visiting the porcelain throne trying to recover from excess alcohol.

  20. KC

    Ryan doesn’t need drumpf.  He’ll win comfortably. drumpf? Different question. He needs everyone and has fewer and fewer.

  21. As much as drumpf’s having to walk things back, he needs eyes in the back of his head.

  22. Kelli Ward should encourage voters to back her.  An effective slogan to that end might be “Back Ward”.

    I give permission for her camp to use that.

  23. Yo, Bink!: Tony the Baloney is corrrrect:  You da Champ……..today is my day to cheat a little…..Craig has me craving for some ribs…but i like rib tips…..and some fries, a cold bud,garlic bread, corn on the cob……gonna feel like im sinning….but im not…..el-chamuco made me do it……..not doing any concrete work….sometimes i do consulting on a project, or run a project for others G Cs….thats good enough for me now…..thanks for asking…..later

  24. “Vote Republican- Obstructing Government For YOU, But In Reality, We Do That Because We Don’t Have Any Other Ideas”


    Ok, that one might need to be honed a bit, run through a few focus groups, etc.  Free to use, though, GOP.

  25. There is hope for AZ but still in the future.  My niece is a doctor in the Phoenix area and she has inlaws in the Tucson area

    My brother spends his Colorado winters in AZ     The population is shifting from the older white voter to more diverse and younger.

    But it takes a long time and Az is crawling out of the stone age where they have proudly lived.

  26. Roger Stone continues to try to game the outcome

    I think some of what he says borders if not crosses the line of treason

  27. Arizona is consistently red and Washington consistently blue, but there may be a surprise waiting for Drumph in the military vote.  My son tells me that at Lewis/McChord all of the younger service people in our much more diverse military are pretty much bailing on the GOP.  Most probably going to Libertarian, but they don’t like Trump.  Arizona has that hard core retiree community so it may take a while longer, but at least becoming pale pink rather than flaming red wouldn’t surprise me.


  28. Goops better find a new story line  Hillary’s numbers in terms of popularity are up

  29. Dear Chuck Load

    Give it up  the poll numbers showed that people who listened to Trump’s convention speech were LESS likely to support him

  30. Thank you eProf; I think I have a better understand of politics in your beautiful state. I must say that I’m totally chagrined by the Flagstaff area being Republican. Until Kumcho discovered that it snowed there, I had her believing that it would be a nice place to call home. Now, as usual, I’ve learned that she was correct in the first place.

  31. What’s left?

    We know he does not do mea culpa (even if the media creates one).  So we don’t have to wait for the “I’m not a witch” confession.   Maybe “I’m so great I ate the guts of this possum I have on my head raw”.  What’s left for him to offend?  Geez and Jesus Alou (hay-sous aluu).   He has provided so much so soon, what is left?  Eat the gonads of Paul Ryan in front of the camera ( more like eating a Chicken McNugget).

    Who is left to offend?

    White males.  Well this should be an interesting 94 days.

  32. A few of us here have been around since Truman took the Oval Office.  Looking back at all the presidential elections I can remember, Ike in 56 as my first ( I mixed him up with my uncle when I saw him on the television).  Through the Kennedy and Nixon fight.  The Nixon win in 68.  Followed by the failure of Ford.  The failure of Carter.  The takeover by the Republicans Reagan and Bushie I.  then the takeover by Clinton I.  The win by Bushie  II who was such a disaster the R’s no longer are in contention of the White House.  Obama shoved history down the R’s throats.  Now instead of a political candidate the Republicans have themselves a blow hard who promises the cure to impotence and hemorrhoids.

    Need to solve the problem of anything, the stupid one says “Trust me. I will solve all your problems”.  Yeah, sure.  Trust him and lose your money and happiness.

  33. So Troll is now saying Clinton is unhinged  in a classic playground  I know I am and so are you ploy…but he’s the only one acting crazy

  34. Interesting story about my first Presidential Convention.  The girl across the street was one of the first times I stayed in a school long enough to actually have a friend. See a Chinchilla named Elvis:  


    We had actually gotten acquainted before the 1958 in the story because he father was also going for his Phd and was using me as a guinea pig.  He was designing a test for the fire department admission exams and was trying to determine the level of questions by testing everyone he could victimize long enough to take tests.  While running me through all the usual nonsense of Wechsler-Bellelvue among other standard possibilities, the 1956 was on the TV in the background.  End result I connect John Kennedy’s voice with a whole lot of fun involving a much needed father figure and fluffy rodents.


  35. Blue

    Aged are Me.  I was born in March of 1944 so Roosevelt was technically my first President for a shade over a year.  Truman was the first President I actually remember.  Stevenson my first loss even though I secretly liked Ike.

  36. altho’ I’ve pretty much forgotten or mushed together other Olympic opening ceremonies, can’t forget that one 8 years ago.  here on the trail consensus seemed to be in the super scary to very impressed range.

    rio tonight at 8…. covered by nbc starting at 7:30 edt.

  37. Eprof…   good to see you’re still around.  Thanks for the interesting post on AZ politics.

    Summertiiiiime….. and the living is easy….   I’m just lounging around and doing some reading….    picking some fresh veggies (the ones the deer haven’t eaten) and enjoying the good eats.  I’m looking forward to Thursday…   the first pre-season game of football.  I’ll watch some of the Olympics…   I’m not into the summer games as much as I am the winter ones.

    Oh…   is Trump still in the news…  I’ve been taking a news sabbatical and lovin’ it!

  38. I have a feeling that the trumpers of AZ are bored with muckain, even though they still guzzle his Belgian-owned Budweiser beer.

    My opinion of the commie-cigarette-smoking bum doesn’t matter as much as a chuckwalla’s fart, ‘cuz I don’t live in cactus land. That said, I will not be surprised if Kirkpatrick goes to the Senate. I will not be surprised if the weak Dem succeeds Kirkpatrick in the AZ1  House Seat.

  39. Lol, “what is about you that makes you a lightening rod” oh, i think we know…….

  40. Part of the deal with the Arizona vote is how the Mormons vote.  When they come out – they come out in force.  I remember the election of Evan Mecham in the 1980’s.  What a complete a-hole.  I was on the team trying to get him recalled.

    The LDS folks don’t care that much for Trump – he’s been almost ex-communicated by Romney.  That could make a difference.

  41. All, I was pleased to write today’s post in response to Craig’s inquiry. For those who have been around since the beginning of TM, the idea was to help each other understand what was happening politically in our part of the world. I second the motion on the table by Bink, let’s inform each other about local politics in our areas. After all, all politics is local and we all have our insights into national politics wherever we might live. 49 To Go!  More on AZ after the primaries.

  42. I live in Southern Texas.  Not going to get a lot of polling here – most pollsters consider it a waste of money.

    I’m not hearing anything about Trump from the hordes of Republicans around here.  Quite!  Cone of silence.  I can’t even recall of a single Trump bumper sticker I’ve seen in the past month.

    While our “I’m going to sue Obama again” governor Abbott is very very quite after getting his behind kicked over both his restrictive women’s health clinic law and ridiculous voter ID laws getting set aside by the fairly conservative 5th circuit court of appeals in Louisiana.  He’s lucky the governors race was 2 years ago and not this year or we might have had a governor Davis.

  43. I met Nellie Fox onset. Long story short he had zero interest in signing my Nellie Fox baseball glove.

  44. I was wondering where my baseball glove went. Sturgeone’s had it the last 60 years. It really was the worst glove available between here and the Horsehead Galaxy.

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