Next week, some Republican voters (and a handful of selfish Independents) are going to determine who will square off against Democrat Fred DuVal in the November general election for Governor of Arizona. The primary campaign has been an especially nasty one, with a torrent of out-of-state money funding some of the stupidest attack ads of all time. Since they are Republicans—which means, among other things, that they don't care about education or the environment—the slimiest one appears to be the front-runner, but it's not guaranteed. So, as a public service, I am offering a voting guide for those who will be going to the polls next Tuesday.
Doug Ducey: Apparently the front-runner, although the race is still plenty volatile. Fake-ass smile, fake-ass record of "accomplishments," fake-ass business acumen. In other words, the prototypical Arizona politician.
• OHQ (Obama Hatred Quotient): 10 (out of 10). Ducey, we are told, will "stand up to the Obama Administration," as though it were some sort of invading horde. Manages to mention the President in just about every ad and speech. Looks like a person who has never met an actual black person in real life, but sure knows how to run a Republican campaign.
• Thing Most in His Favor: The money that the Koch Brothers print in North Carolina is legal tender throughout the United States and the two nut-birds are willing to throw an ocean of it in Ducey's direction.
• Biggest Obstacle: He can't seem to shake all the negatives that are still reverberating from his disastrous run as head of Cold Stone Creamery, a time when he got rich and a whole lot of other people got poor. He has tried to fight back with a commercial featuring two former Cold Stone franchisees. Check back with us when you can find a current franchisee willing to say something nice about you.
• Who Would Play Him in the Movie: Pee-Wee Herman
Christine Jones: Rich woman using her own money to out-spend the Koch Brothers. Claims that she will "defend Arizona's border with Mexico." Y'know, technically, Arizona just has state lines, while the United States of America has a border with Mexico. Even the most rabidly right wing Supreme Court of all time has said that Arizona can't "defend" the Mexican border, but tough talk plays well in Peoria.
• Biggest Obstacle: Those creepy frameless glasses. Makes us think that they're some kind of new Google Glass that allows her to see right through to our skivvies.
• Who Would Play Her in the Movie: Julianne Moore, who has cornered the market on playing crazy-eyed, vapid white women.
• Chance of Winning the Primary: Not great, but not impossible.
Scott Smith: The former mayor of Mesa is making a late run at the frontrunners. He appears to be a little bit less crazy than the others, which can't help. His opponents have somehow managed to tie him to the failed Kyoto Accord, which would have, you know, saved the planet. Naturally, like all Republicans, he's running away from science, but it has knocked his OHQ way down.
Frank Riggs: Now, this is the guy Independents should vote for. He was a three-term Congressman from Northern California who gave up his seat so he could make a run at the U.S. Senate seat from that state. He entered the race late, ran a really crappy race, then dropped out before election day.
He then moved to Arizona and was gearing up to run against Janet Napolitano for Governor when he discovered, rather late in his effort, that a person must be a resident of Arizona for five years before running for Governor. Oops.
• Thing Most In His Favor: He's got the endorsement of crackpot Ted Nugent, who has offered to bow hunt and eat all of Riggs' primary opponents.
• Number One Obstacle: Mostly, his personality. Or complete lack thereof.
• OHQ: Nine out of 10. His boy Nugent called President Obama a "subhuman mongrel" (and then insisted that there was nothing racist about that) and since Riggs hasn't disavowed it, you've got to figure that they're some kind of kindred spirits.
• Person Who Would Play Him in the Movie: Dustin Diamond, the guy who played Screech on "Saved By The Bell."
• Chance of His Winning the Primary: My football coach used to say that somebody had as much chance as a one-legged man in a butt-kicking contest. With Riggs, you'd have to take away that guy's one good leg.
Ken Bennett: This guy's claim to fame is that he's one of the last birthers who is still allowed to walk among us normal folks. (The rest have rubberized living accommodations.) He once tried to use his phony-baloney political position to keep President Obama off the ballot in Arizona. That gave him Crazy Person bona fides, but hasn't allowed him to gain any traction in this race. No chance. None.
Andrew Thomas: The disbarred and disgraced former Maricopa County Attorney wants to build a fence that would, in effect, cede the Gadsden Purchase (including Tucson) back to Mexico while protecting Phoenix. When he speaks, it's like Captain Jean-Luc Picard talking about the Borg. "Here! No further!"
• Who Would Play Him in the Movie: Edward James Olmos (just for fun).
Now, get out there and vote. And try not to make Arizona any more embarrassing than it already is.