It's no secret that those canned quotes in press releases are usually an invention of PR agents rather than words that flowed from the mouths of those getting quoted. An particularly amusing example landed in our mailbox today, in separate releases from Senate President Bob Burns and Speaker of the House Kirk Adams, who were reacting to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling regarding English-language learners.
Burns: “This opinion vindicates the Legislature and Arizona. Now we need to roll up our sleeves and get on with it and teach these children English.”
Adams: "Now we need to roll up our sleeves and get on with it and teach these children English."
Do you suppose they said it in unison?
Speaking of rolling up those sleeves: How's that budget coming along?
Real-estate developer, former Arizona Democratic Party chairman and unsuccessful Senate candidate Jim Pederson announced yesterday that he would not be running for governor. That's good news for Attorney General Terry Goddard, who also wants the job.
But it's bad news for Dave Bradley, the state lawmaker from midtown Tucson who was mulling a gubernatorial run. Given how little name ID he has statewide, Bradley's odds were long to begin with, but in a contest where the vote isn't being split between Goddard and and Pederson, his chances of winning just dropped through the floor.
And that, in turn, is bad news for all the local would-be lawmakers who were trying to line up an appointment to Bradley's House of Representatives seat, since he's less likely to resign to concentrate on a gubernatorial run.
Bradley is termed out in 2010 and there's a pack of Democratic candidates considering a run in District 28, including blogger Ted Prezelski, former lawmaker Ted Downing, former city councilman Bruce Wheeler and Tim Sultan. (Feel free to add any others to the list in the comments.)
The guys from FOUND magazine will make a stop at the Hotel Congress (311 E. Congress St.) at 8 p.m., Friday, June 26.
Haven't heard of FOUND? Well you may want to check it out at their Web site to make sure that love note you penned, delivered and never saw again hasn't become your first published work.
My personal favorite is the handwritten note posted on the FOUND Web site that goes something like this: "Mano, I fucking hate you ... you said you had to work then whys your car HERE at HER place?? You're a fucking LIAR. I hate you. I fucking hate you." It's signed by an apparently severely pissed off person named Amber who ended the note with: "P.S. Page me later."
Davy and Peter Rothbart - the magazine's creators - will be in Tucson to promote their new book Requiem for a Paper Bag, but the two will also share stories about the business of publishing a magazine about the things we leave behind.
The cover charge is $6. Call 622-8848 for more info.
Ward 2 City Councilman Rodney Glassman is gathering signatures to support naming a ballfield after the late Steve Emerine, a longtime journalist and political activist who died earlier this year at age 73 following complications from surgery.
Besides working as a reporter and editor at the Arizona Daily Star and Tucson Citizen, serving as county assessor, teaching journalism at the UA, running his own consulting business and penning a column for Inside Tucson Business, Emerine was also a little league coach who “insisted that every child play in every game and was known for his generosity and kindness to the kids on the teams he coached,” Glassman writes in his latest Ward 2 bulletin.
Stop by Glassman’s Ward 2 office, 7575 E. Speedway, to find petitions to name a baseball field at Jesse Owens Park after Emerine.
In other Emerine news: The University of Arizona School of Journalism has created a scholarship in Emerine’s name. The J School, with the help of former department head Don Carson and TEP spokeswoman Betsy Bolding, has already raised $4,800 for the Steve Emerine Scholarship, which is directed toward students who show an interest in covering government. Major contributors include the Norville Philanthropic Fund and Pima County Democratic Party.
The first recipient of the scholarship is former Tucson Weekly intern Megan Neighbor, who spent the spring semester interning at the Arizona Legislature. Megan will receive $500 to help in her fall studies, which will include the Reporting Public Affairs course I teach at the J School.
If you’d like to donate to the Steve Emerine Scholarship, send a check made out to UA Foundation/Journalism with Steve’s name in the memo line to: UA School of Journalism, PO Box 210158B, Tucson, AZ 85721-0158.
The Arizona Senate has passed an omnibus bill packed with all the abortion restrictions that social conservatives have been pushing for years. Howie has the details.
HB 2564 would require a woman to wait at least 24 hours between the time she first sees a doctor and the time she actually can get an abortion.
But that time is more than a cooling-off period. The legislation spells out what has to happen at that first meeting.
The doctor who will do that procedure must discuss the risks and alternatives to the procedure as well as the probable "anatomical and physiological characteristics of the unborn child at the time the abortion is to be performed.''
And the law also would require that someone at the clinic — it would not have to be the doctor — tell the woman that medical assistance benefits may be available if she decides to keep the child, public and private agencies and services are available to assist during pregnancy and after childbirth, and that the father is liable for child support even if he agrees to pay for an abortion.
Given the degree to which the GOP majority is cutting back on social services, it really does seem as if they love kids right up until they're born.
The Onion reports that Barack Obama is planning to run for McCain's Senate seat. An excerpt:
PHOENIX—Saying that it is time for change to come to Arizona, President Barack Obama on Tuesday formally announced that he will run for Senate against John McCain in the 2010 election.
Obama asks Arizona voters to send another message to Washington and John McCain.
Addressing a capacity crowd of nearly 72,000 at University of Phoenix Stadium, Obama stood before a giant banner emblazoned with his new "President Obama for Senate" logo—a basic facsimile of his 2008 campaign emblem with a cactus inscribed in the center—and called on voters to "turn the page and write the next chapter in the great Arizona story."
"I am, and always have been, motivated by a single, powerful idea: that I might one day play a small part in building a better Arizona," Obama said. "So I ask you today to join me in this quest. Our children, and our children's children, deserve it. Together, we can meet the challenges we face. Together, we can send a message to Washington, and together, we can beat John McCain."
"Yes, we can in Arizona," Obama continued to overwhelming applause. "Yes, we can in Arizona. Yes, we can beat John McCain. Yes, we can in Arizona."
Train whistles used to conjure up thoughts of hobos, traffic delays and old Johnny Cash records, but that was before I discovered “rail pints” on a recent visit to Barrio Brewing Company (800 E. 16th St.).
You see, Barrio Brewing Company is housed in this super old and very cool warehouse building that happens to be a stone's throw from a set of railroad tracks and its associated crossing. And every so often, the train comes blaring through, shaking tables and deafening anyone sitting at the dozen or so patio tables.
But Barrio has turned what could be a nightmare for many businesses into a bright spot. If you’re at the brewery when the train comes crashing through, you get a pint of their very tasty beer for $3 for as long as the road blocks are down across the nearby tracks.
On my visit, the waitress came crashing through the brewery doors, exclaiming "Rail pints!" to all that would listen. It was festive and fun, and before I knew it, I was half way through another pint and the sound of the train seemed somehow less important.
Good job, Barrio. Waiting for a train to pass has never been so much fun.
As we reported in "Signature Problems" last week, the Pima County Democratic Party has challenged Dave Croteau's Green Party candidacy for the Tucson City Council, saying he didn't get enough signatures from Green Party members within Ward 6. Croteau told us today that he voluntarily withdrew, since he knew he wouldn't prevail in court.
But that doesn’t mean that Green Party is out of the race. Croteau tells us that his campaign manager, Dave Ewoldt, may be running as a write-in candidate. Ewoldt would have to get seven votes in the Sept. 1 primary to land a spot on the November ballot.
If he manages to do that, Democratic incumbent Nina Trasoff’s left flank will be exposed as she runs against Republican Steve Kozachik.
Croteau tells us that other Green write-ins may emerge in Ward 3, where Democratic incumbent Karin Uhlich is facing Republican Ben Buehler-Garcia, and in Ward 5, where Democrat Richard Fimbres is facing the winner of the GOP primary between Shaun McClusky and Judith Gomez.