The Jake Files

April 15, 2006

Let’s Get Ready to Rumble!!!

In the past two days I've received two direct mail pieces from Jeff Weninger, and two from Becky Jackson.  The differences couldn't be starker.

Mr. Weninger gave some specific reasons to vote for him that didn't involve endorsements.  Now, he DID have endorsements, namely Jay Tibshraeny, Boyd Dunn, and Bob Caccamo.  But he gave some specific campaign promises, including:

Cut the property tax rate to make certain that families in Chandler are not overtaxed

Enhance business community by supporting Chandler businesses and recruiting quality companies

Construct more bus pullouts as well as street and intersection improvements to help traffic flow.

Revitalize downtown Chandler while showing respect to existing downtown business (a nod to private property rights?  I'd like to hear more about this)

And how did candidate Jackson use her direct mail?

…which is why partisan politics are not appropriate in city council elections.  I am a registered Republican, however, made the decision not to seek partisan endorsements.

For someone who doesn't want to have politics enter the race, she sure made it clear what party she was from.

Ms. Jackson also used most of her space on endorsements from the defeated council candidates (Frank Peake, Chris Stage, Rick Heumann), and an odd laundry list comparison of her public service compared to Jeff Weninger's.  Ms. Jackson listed all the community and corporate boards she's been a part of, so many, that the last one actually runs up the side of the page.  I'm not sure if that was done for effect (highlighting the fact that she has so much "experience" that it can't all fit on one page), or was just lazy typesetting.

You can see where this is going, of course.  Compared to No-Action Jackson's many board memberships, Jeff Weninger's involvement with the Boys and Girls Club and food donations to local sports teams and charities is so, well, pedestrian.  Not worthy of inclusion in such weighty matters as tax policy and employment matters.  Not enough experience to deal with the matters that come before the council.

Ms. Jackson's "Action in the Future" lists generic goals for the future, but not specific policy initiatives.  Perhaps that's what one should expect from a candidate that has spent all of her time in board meetings, instead of accomplishing things like, say, building a business, putting people to work, and contributing taxes to the community.  Then again, with all her experience sitting in meetings, maybe Becky Jackson is just what we need.  She'd fit right in with those on the council who talk just to hear the sound of their own voices.


March 9, 2006

Response from Jeff Weninger

Council candidate Jeff Weninger responded yesterday to the Amazing Jake’s campaign commentary, and was a good sport about the criticism he’s received here

Just a couple of points.  I agree with most of what he said in his comments. 

I have also said that I believe the best places for big box stores is in the freeway corridors. I am just not willing to say that under NO circumstance could a big box go anywhere else.

Well, we’re in agreement that they belong near freeways.  Not so much on whether they could go somewhere else.  Chandler approved a general plan a few years back that identified appropriate locations for various zoning categories.  It’s not too much to expect that when citizens make the largest purchase of their lives knowing what the development plans are for the area they will live in, that the City honor the plan that they developed, and not allow prohibited development in inappropriate locations.  I expect the leaders of my community to take stands on such matters. (more…)

March 8, 2006

Chandler AZ Council Race – Direct Mail Week of March 6th

In this last full week of the race, the mail is coming fast and furious.  Actually, before I get into this week’s mail, I neglected to post one piece I received a week ago last Saturday.  I got a door hanger from Phill Westbrooks that was targeted directly at my neighborhood.  It mentioned under no uncertain terms:

I will not ever support Wal-Mart on Arizona Ave. and Riggs Rd.  Vice Mayor Phill Westbrooks

It also takes a shot at the Mayor:

Mayor Dunn has failed to manage Chandler’s growth – our streets, parks, and police services are lagging far behind in Southeast Chandler.

So, back to this week.

Chris Stage sent two pieces.  One focused on Ms. Stage’s “commitment to Chandler’s public safety.”  The second highlighted endorsements from Matt Orlando, Patti Bruno, and Martin Sepulveda. (more…)

Party Affiliation in Chandler Mayoral and Council Race

The last Chandler City Council meeting before Tuesday’s election was a showcase of political sniping.

It started when Councilman Martin Sepulveda questioned Mayor Boyd Dunn’s public appearances with Republican congressmen and called for an elected officials’ “code of conduct.”

Sepulveda, who is backing Dunn challenger Phill Westbrooks, said, “It’s not my intent to browbeat,” but challenged Dunn’s Feb. 20 appearance with U.S. Sen. John McCain on the city’s cable channel and mailing, at city expense, invitations to a public session with U.S. Rep. Jeff Flake in November.

Today’s story in the Arizona Republic by Edythe Jensen highlights the tension on the current council. 

It also helps answer a question that I, and several people looking for information on this site, have been trying to find out:

Search term:  “Westbrooks what political party is he” – 7 hits

Search term:  “Boyd Dunn Chandler, AZ Republican” – 13 hits (more…)

March 2, 2006

Jeff Weninger Direct Mail – Chandler City Council Elections

The Amazing Jake’s mailbox has been overflowing of late with direct mail pieces from various candidates.  I posted on some prior direct mail here

Jeff Weninger has been busy.  Yesterday I received the exact same piece he sent a few weeks ago.  That’s right, the one where he took up a third of one side with a picture of him slouching with Senator McCain, not wearing a suit.  The same one that listed “No service fee increases” and “No property tax increases” at the end of a long list of generic priorities like “Provide Police and Fire with every resource needed to fully safe guard the citizens of Chandler.”  That’s great Jeff.  We all want increased police and fire protection, including me.  What I want to know is, HOW are you going to provide that, especially since you’re also promising no service fee increases and no property tax increases. (more…)

February 5, 2006

Shadegg Loses House Leadership

Filed under: Arizona,Conservative,Politics,Republican Party — Amazing Jake @ 1:10 pm

Despite my best efforts, and those of other conservative bloggers, John Shadegg lost the Majority Leader race this week. Now that Shadegg has given up his post as chair of the Republican Policy Committee, what does the future hold in store for him?

Shadegg gave up his position as chair of the Republican Policy Committee to focus on the leadership race; it’s a decision he doesn’t regret. His staffers say that in the coming months he will use the publicity he has gotten from this race to push for the big reforms — like changing the outdated federal budget process — that he put at the heart of his campaign.

This is encouraging.  As majority leader, Shadegg would be restrained by multiple priorities, including building strategy around the 2006 elections.  As a congressman with no other portfolio but the voice of conservative reform, he will be freer to push specific agendas that advance the conservative cause.

January 30, 2006

Shadegg for Majority Leader

Filed under: Arizona,Conservative,Politics,Republican Party — Amazing Jake @ 10:51 pm

This is encouraging (hat tip Instapundit):

But neutral observers and individuals sympathetic to Bohener and Shadegg say that in the complicated world of leadership races, endorsements are good for only one go around on the carousel. And a source familiar with the Shadegg campaign notes that it is “tricky for Blunt to whip a second ballot given his” public claims of having already reached 117. Asked outright if Shadegg has asked for and received promises of second ballot support from Blunt and Boehner backers, this source offered an unequivocal “yes.”

As I’ve posted on previously, Jeff Flake is my representative, not Shadegg.  I don’t know that much about Shadegg other than what has been reported.  What I do know, is that he’s the best hope the GOP has to stop the insanity that is big government, big spending, appearance-of-impropriety, etc. 

I remember reading a post at The Truth Laid Bear right after Shadegg entered the race endorsing his prospective leadership, which was countersigned by quite a few other conservative bloggers.  Count me in.

January 9, 2006

Tom Delay Out as Majority Leader

Filed under: Arizona,Conservative,Main Stream Media,Politics,Republican Party — Amazing Jake @ 12:41 am

So, I saw this as breaking news on Fox as I left the house this morning and haven’t had much time to research the story.  One nugget I heard yesterday had to do with this, but I didn’t find the details until just now:

WASHINGTON – Arizona’s Rep. Jeff Flake on Friday was among Republican lawmakers leading efforts to permanently replace Rep. Tom DeLay as majority leader amid the growing corruption scandal tied to disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff.

Flake and Rep. Charles Bass, R-N.H., began circulating a petition to House colleagues calling for a special election when the House returns to Washington later this month to pick “permanent representatives for any vacant leadership position.”

“Congressman Flake is not pleased with the current direction of the Republican Party and he feels that a leadership election would spur some competing visions for reform,” Flake spokesman Matthew Specht said. “He believes that the party needs a course correction and that starts with an election for a permanent majority leader.”

Now, Representative Flake is my congressman.  I generally agree with most of what he stands for, although I frequently find myself wondering about his effectiveness in Congress.  He seems to be against things more than he is for things, which in a weird sort of way, reminds me of the democrats.  He is very conservative (which I like), especially on spending (which I really like), but he has a reputation for being hard to work with in Congress so I wonder how well he is representing my district.  Those 320-10 votes – he’s usually one of the 10, voting against a bill on principle because of a spending issue.  I LOVE the principle, but I think he goes about it the wrong way.

Which brings me back to circulating petitions to oust the majority leader.  Tom Delay has been, on balance, a good majority leader for the party.  He’s brought a hell of a lot of bad publicity, and the target on his back is largely of his own doing.  I love the fact that he smiled in his booking photo after being arrested to deny the MSM the opportunity to photoshop his picture for the next weekly news magazine, a la OJ Simpson.  But that kind of thing sends the lefty fringe over the edge, and that brings more attention.  Bottom line, Delay pushed the edge and surrounded himself with unethical people, but I doubt he broke any laws.  If he did he deserves whatever punishment he gets, but my sense is this whole sordid affair (regarding Delay’s involvement, not Abramoff) has been largely manufactured by the Dems and their MSM lackeys.

So, Delay showed bad judgment in getting caught in the appearance of impropriety.  Just the appearance, given the current political climate, should be enough to make him take one for the team and resign.  What he didn’t need to do is resign under pressure, with a knife in his back from my congressman.

Now that he has decided to resign, who will take his place?  Most media reports I’ve seen agree that current majority whip and acting leader Roy Blunt (MO) is the frontrunner, and John Boehner (OH) confirmed as challenging him. 


There’s something to be said for having someone in the leadership that has zero name recogntion.  Speaker Dennis Hastert hasn’t been villainized by the opposition because no one knows who he is, and he doesn’t do anything controversial (that I’ve heard of).  That’s one approach.

Another approach would be to go with one of the dark horse candidates, specifically Mike Pence of Indiana.  Representative Pence is known as the fiscal conservative who dared to suggest that Hurricane Katrina relief be paid for by offsetting cuts in earmarked appropriations (i.e. PORK) in other districts.  I could find the links on Instapundit, but this post is so long already I think I need to stop.

So what was the point of all this rambling?

  • Tom Delay out – not a bad outcome
  • Jeff Flake – love the positions, hate the methods
  • Mike Pence – more interesting than the favored candidates

Brevity is the soul of wit, and I shall endeavor to remember that for the next post.


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