It may have started here with my post, Victoria Steele’s Very Good Day, I don't know, where I wrote about one of Rep. Steele's bills and about the three-way race shaping up in Legislative District 9 between Steele, fellow Democrat Randy Friese (the newcomer) and Republican Rep. Ethan Orr. I mentioned it might be hard for Orr to maintain "the moderate cred he works so hard to cultivate," given some of his important votes siding with his conservative colleagues.
Star columnist Tim Steller commented about my post on Facebook, leading to a long, contentious comment stream, which he followed with a column, Dems target moderate GOP legislator Orr. The headline takes a stronger stand about Orr's moderation than the column, but Steller clearly leans to that side in his arguments.
Enter Blog for Arizona. Pamela Powers followed Steller's column with a post, AZ Star Perpetuates ‘Ethan Orr Is a Moderate’ Myth, where she writes about Orr's votes for voter suppression, his radically anti-abortion pledge to fight for the rights of unborn fetuses, and his support from the National Rifle Association and the Goldwater Institute.
Steller picked up the fight in this Friday's column. He refers to comments by "Pamela Powers Hannley and others active on the left" — the Star must have a policy against mentioning Blog for Arizona by name — and defends Orr against their assaults on his moderate credentials.
Back comes Blog for Arizona. AZ Blue Meanie wrote a very long post, The Trouble with E.Orr - he does not represent the values of his constituents, challenging Steller's assertions.
It's a good fight, with knowledgeable folks wrestling over serious issues. It's also way above this retired educator's pay grade, so I'll leave it to my betters at the Star, Blog for Arizona and of course our very knowledgeable, exceedingly capable journalists here at the Weekly.
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