AZ GOP is such an embarrassment they won’t let the press in to a forum

11 Apr 2014 10:59 pm
Posted by: Donna

Just, wowThe event was sponsored by two East Valley GOP committees and held at Campo Verde High School in Gilbert.

A reporter covering the event for the Arizona Republic was turned away at the door by GOP committee chairman Tyler Bowyer, the event’s primary organizer.

GOP gubernatorial candidates in attendance included Secretary of State Ken Bennett, State Treasurer Doug Ducey, state Sen. Al Melvin, Mesa Mayor Scott Smith, attorney Christine Jones and former U.S. Rep. Frank Riggs. A seventh candidate, former medical-center executive John Molina, was seen negotiating with organizers for entry..

I have worked on a good many campaigns in Arizona, including some statewide ones, and the number of times I’ve seen a Democratic candidate avoid the press is zero. Certainly an individual Dem candidate may have a personal or legal problem arise that would cause them to avoid reporters but, in general, Democrats running for office chase the press because they want to make sure their positions and their good ideas get as wide public exposure as possible. This is often called “earned media” and it’s highly coveted by Democrats. Democrats running in primaries are especially eager to have the press at them. If a forum were held for a seven-way Dem primary you can bet that every one of those candidates’ communications teams would press releasing the ever loving crap out of it. And the state and county Dem parties, while tending not to endorse in primaries for open seats, would still be very encouraging of media coverage of forums and debates. So it’s puzzling that Arizona Republicans would want to keep the press out of an event like this.

Just kidding! Of course they want to keep the media, and recorders and cameras, as far away from their whackadoodle candidates and activists as possible. If there were questions from the audience even that slick Scott Smith might accidentally say something stupid. Can’t be too careful, can you, Republicans? In fairness, it wasn’t the candidates themselves who requested no press but, still, this looks terrible. The “re-branding” clearly isn’t going well.

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