Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Meet U.S. Senate Candidate John Dougherty

Posted By on Tue, Jun 1, 2010 at 8:34 AM

Investigative reporter John Dougherty, one of four Democrats running for U.S. Senate this year, will be at Hotel Congress from 7 to 9 p.m. this Thursday, June 3.

Here's the release from Dougherty's campaign:

U.S. Senate Democratic candidate John Dougherty takes his campaign to unseat John McCain to Tucson Thursday to rally Southern Arizona supporters at the Hotel Congress in Tucson.

"We don't have time for the politics of fear," said Dougherty, who promises to initiate fact-based solutions to America's problems, from environmental collapse to immigration reform to paying for two wars overseas.

As one of America's premier investigative journalists, Dougherty has served the public by exposing corruption and holding Arizona's most powerful politicians and government agencies accountable for more than 25 years.

His investigations and articles have played a major role in shaping Arizona's political history. At the Dayton Daily News in 1989, he uncovered the Keating Five scandal, prompting a congressional investigation that nearly ended Sen. McCain's career during his first Senate term. In 2004, Dougherty reported on the bootlegging roots of McCain's wife's family liquor business.

His reporting on Arizona Governor Fife Symington in the early 1990s foreshadowed Symington's conviction and resignation from office in 1997. Dougherty's series on Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio exposed his corruption years before the ongoing federal grand jury investigation. And his reporting on polygamist cult leader Warren Jeffs described a litany of criminal abuses

long before Jeffs was convicted and imprisoned.

Dougherty's consistent focus on government accountability has laid the groundwork for his entry into politics. He promises to bring the same fact-driven determination to the halls of Congress that drove his reporting as he exposed some of the corrupt practices that have driven America to the brink of financial ruin.

"The public has a huge frustration with the government's inability to do what it says it will do. People want government to hold corporations accountable. Congress has the authority to do that, but instead too many elected officials accept huge campaign donations from special interests and embrace truly cozy relationships with industry. Just look at the catastrophic oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico and the collapse of the financial markets," Dougherty said.

The same lax regulatory enforcement and Congressionally approved loopholes that brought the collapse of the savings and loan industry in the 1980s, he said, produced the 2008 Wall Street meltdown necessitating the citizen bailout of the U. S. financial industry.

In the 1980s, McCain pressured regulators to weaken savings and loan regulations. That financial collapse cost Americans $250 billion, or $472 billion in today's dollars.

"Senator McCain didn't learn anything from the Keating Five scandal," Dougherty said.

"When the Senate voted May 20, 2010 on the Financial Reform Bill, McCain voted no. Once again, McCain showed that his loyalty and concern is for protecting the interests of the financial giants that contribute millions of dollars to his campaign coffers. He should have been defending the security and well-being of average Americans.

"I share the public's outrage over Washington's systemic inability to address and find solutions to the most pressing issues facing the country, including crippling budget deficits, the failure to pass comprehensive immigration reform and looming environmental catastrophes.

"The rapidly emerging, grassroots-driven shift in American politics has many calling for a new generation of leaders to break the corrupt bonds of lobbyists, big money and their Washington handmaidens. I intend to lead the way.

"Running for the U.S. Senate is an opportunity to bring together everything I've been doing as an investigative journalist and apply it to politics at this crucial time in U.S. history," Dougherty said.

Campaign Kick-off details: 7-9 p.m., Thursday June 3 in the Copper Room at the Hotel Congress, 311 East Congress Street, Tucson.

John Dougherty biographical notes: Dougherty's work has also appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, High Country News, Phoenix New Times, the Mesa Tribune, the Phoenix Gazette and the Arizona Republic. He's been a frequent contributor to KJZZ and KAET Channel 8's Horizon. John has been named Arizona Journalist of the Year three times and won the prestigious Don Bolles Award for Investigative Reporting on two occasions.

John moved to Tempe in 1974 to attend Arizona State University. He graduated with a B.S. Journalism in 1978 and a B.S. Economics in 1981 and was a member of the ASU swimming team and a reporter and sports editor at the State Press. John was named to the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism Hall of Fame in 1996.

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