Thursday, June 14, 2007

And They're Off!

Posted By on Thu, Jun 14, 2007 at 2:43 PM

The roster is finally set for this year’s city elections with yesterday's deadline to file petitions.

Mayor Bob Walkup’s moderate ways appears to have won over Democrats, seeing how they were unable to scare up a candidate to challenge him. And, sadly, Bruce Gerowitz, who sells hot dogs outside of a Speedway strip club, decided against running as an independent.

So that leaves Dave Croteau, a Green who made the legalization of pot the centerpiece of his campaign against Sheriff Clarence Dupnik, as the only guy who’s willing to take on Walkup.

We’ll just go ahead and congratulate Bob on his re-election right now.

But, with the retirement of City Council members Carol West and José Ibarra, we will see some changes by the end of year.

In Ward 1, where Ibarra is stepping down after three terms of steady political self-destruction, the GOP failed to field a candidate. That means the primary, which will be limited to Ward 1 Democrats, will decide the race between Regina Romero and Ken Green.

Romero has the Grijalva political machine at her back; hubby Ruben Reyes works as an aide to Raul.

Green is a pastor and president of the A Mountain Neighborhood Association.

Over in Ward 2, where Carol West is retiring after two terms, we’ve got a Democratic primary as well: Rodney Glassman vs. Robert Reus.

Though he’s just turned 29, Glassman already has a lengthy political resume, including a stint as an aide in Grijalva’s congressional office.

Reus, who owns an art shop on Fourth Avenue, doesn’t have the same kind of political connections. The thrust of his campaign revolves around changing the current form of government to give the mayor more power and go for an alderman-style council—a topic he has often brought up at council meetings and on his public-access TV show.

Even Reus admits that he’s the underdog in the race because Glassman has more name ID, more organization and more money.

The winner of the Democratic primary will face Republican Lori Oien in the citywide general election. Oien, a native Tucsonan, has been active in the Bear Canyon Neighborhood Association.

Finally, in Ward 4, Councilwoman Shirley Scott is facing a challenge from Republican Dan Spahr as she campaigns for a fourth term. Spahr, a financial planner, is making his first run for public office.

“I have always, my entire life, been a servant,” says Spahr, who moved to Tucson about four years ago. “I’ve always been doing things to help out other people. This is next step in the journey."

Spahr says he wants to develop a “faith-based” effort that will team up the police and church groups in the fight against crime. “I call it “servant evangelism,” he says.

We’ll tell you more about the candidates in next week’s Skinny, but if you want to see them for yourselves, they’ll all be on display at a Nucleus Club form at 5:30 p.m. tonight at the Viscount Suites, 4855 E. Broadway Blvd.

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