Sunday, November 2, 2008

It's crunch time & we NEED your help!

Greetings Fellow Pima County YRs-

We have only 1 more day until Election Day! And we need your help! Depending on where you live, there are many phone banking opportunities tomorrow & Election Day. We also have many positions open for poll watchers, poll runners & volunteers of every sort on Election Day!


If you can help for even 30 minutes tomorrow or Election Day, we could use your help.

Start by going to Pima County Republican Party headquarters @ 5447 E. 5th Street, Suite 100 in Tucson (directions here) or calling them @ 520-321-1492 if you live in Central, East or South Tucson.

If you live in North, Northwest Tucson, Marana, or Oro Valley, then our Northwest headquarters @ 1171 E. Rancho Vistoso Blvd, Suite 111 in Oro Valley (directions here) might be better for you on Election Day. You can call Linda @ 520-825-0334.

We have a lot of big races!

Of course, the big one is the race for President & John McCain & Sarah Palin are coming on strong! Help us prove the polls wrong on Election Day.

After that, we have a big race for Congress in District 8 & Tim Bee needs your help too!

Our biggest races for the State Legislature are in Districts 26 & 30. Al Melvin, Vic Williams, & Marilyn Zerull could really use your help making phone calls to get supporters out for them. Our big races in District 30 are for the State House. In that district, Frank Antenori & Dave Gowan really need your help. The last thing in the world that we need is a State Legislature that will do the bigging of Janet Napolitano. There are many other big races for State Legislature also. And many of these candidates have talked at our meetings.

The last big, big race is for Pima County Supervisor in District 3. We need to get Barney Brenner elected to the board. That will give Republicans the majority on the board & should give us the advantage when redistricting comes around after the next Census. Barney has asked for our help & I will be helping him on Election Day. Any of you who would also like to help with Barney's election, please let me know.

If any of you have any questions about where to go to help, you can call me @ 520-444-6280.

*Regarding voting, make sure that you vote! Voting closes @ 7 pm this Tuesday. If you have a Vote-by-Mail Ballot, it must be received in the mail no later than 7 pm that Tuesday. SO, IT'S ALREADY TOO LATE TO MAIL YOUR BALLOT BACK NOW! But don't fear, you can also drop your ballot off at any polling station before 7 pm on Tuesday & it will still be counted.

If you have questions about where to go to vote, click on this link & it will tell you where your polling place is. If you have any other questions about the voting process, you can call the Pima County Recorder's Office @ 520-740-4330.

Good luck & we will win on Tuesday if we work as hard as we can these last couple days!



  1. Robert Rowley, Tucson, ArizonaNovember 3, 2008 at 7:13 AM

    "The voters of Arizona CD 8 are seeing the politically ineffective side to GOP Congressional candidate Tim Bee. The guy can not make up his mind….
    Let me preface my remarks by saying that Tim is a really nice guy. In fact, his easy going niceness is part of his political problem. He has a terrible time making up his mind if doing so will offend someone. I learned this first hand while serving in the Senate with Tim. I learned quickly that you never could count on his support.

    We were called into a special session by the governor. One issue we needed to address was something called Excess Utilities which helped school districts budget for and pay for utility expenses. I was trying to garner 16 votes to support the continuation of the program. Senator Bee should have been a pretty easy YES because some of his school dsitricts in LD 30 directly were impacted by the vote. As I recall, the Vail School district desperately needed Tim's vote.

    I remember calling Tim at home the day before the vote. He assured me he was a YES. We had the necessary 16 votes. The only problem is the next day on the floor, Tim changed his vote to NO. He later told me that he did not know how to tell me he had changed his vote because Senate President Ken Bennett had put pressure on him. When I asked him about Vail, he just shrugged his shoulders and said, "Ken needed my vote." I guess the folks in Vail play second fiddle to the senate boss from Prescott.

    Holy Cow! This guy caves in all the time. We sat next to one another on the Appropriations Committee. Numerous times, after he voted (in my opinion the wrong way), he would turn to me and whisper, "I wish I could have voted your way. You know you're right." After awhile I started to ignore him because of his lack of political backbone.

    I now read that he is unsure how he stands on the Social Security issue. I also read that after putting Proposition 102 (the Marriage Amendment) on the ballot, he is unsure how he will vote. I am not surprised by either revelation that Bee is "unsure." The guy should be a social director at a country club, not a member of Congress. Hey, if you plan to visit DC and want to take a Capitol tour, vote for Bee! He will be great at Capitol tours"

  2. Robert Rowley, Tucson, ArizonaNovember 3, 2008 at 8:44 PM


    Easy Ride
    The Tanque Verde School Board is preparing to give a key politico's company a sweetheart deal.

    By CHRIS LIMBERIS email this author
    The Tanque Verde School Board is primed to bail out a company owned by influential state Sen. Tim Bee and his brother with a real estate deal for a bus yard and office next to the district's headquarters.

    The Bee Line, operated by the second-term Republican and his brother and Senate predecessor, Keith Bee, wants to switch from tenant to landlord on a parcel that adjoins the Tanque Verde bus yard and is east of the district offices at 11150 E. Tanque Verde Road.

    Taxpayers already subsidized the Bee Line this year after the company fell behind on the $725 monthly rent. Tanque Verde officials also allowed the Bees to use the property after the lease expired in February.

    Rather than face eviction, Keith Bee eventually paid the back rent while he simultaneously pitched the proposal for Tanque Verde to use space on the adjoining Bee property. Such an arrangement will clear the Bee buses from the district's lot. More important, Keith Bee is hoping his company will therefore be able to circumvent Pima County zoning and building codes, records show.

    Under the proposal, set for board approval Sept. 11, the Bee Line will open its own bus yard and office on two acres of residential-zoned land just north of the district's bus yard. The Bee brothers will then free up space for the Tanque Verde school buses and lease the parcel to the district for $1 a year.

    Keith Bee, a five-term senator representing the Tanque Verde Valley and other east Tucson and Green Valley areas, bought the property for $135,000 in 1999, according to county records.

    Zoning at CR1 allows not a bus yard but two homes. Without the nominal lease with Tanque Verde, the Bees "would not be able to fence, grade, put down gravel or house a portable office because of zoning issues," Superintendent Denise Ryan told the school board in an Aug. 8 memo.

    By signing the nominal lease with Tanque Verde schools, the Bee brothers are hoping to piggyback on land use law that generally allows school districts to use property as they please. County officials say there is no guarantee in this case.

    Keith Bee has asserted that the new arrangement will save Tanque Verde taxpayers, but one proposal had the district paying an equal $6,500 share for initial improvements, records show.

    Some neighbors already have issues with Bee Line's use of the district's property, particularly when the large touring coach is fired up.

    Among the problems cited by Carolyn Gould, director of Tanque Verde school transportation, are "complaints from neighboring houses. Diesel smoke, noise late at night and on weekends. Bee Line has been asked to move their buses in the main parking lot in the morning to 'pre-trip,' them. Only a few drivers are doing this," Gould said in an 2001 assessment.

    Exhaust from the coach bus, Gould said, "creates a dust storm, which keeps our district vehicles and vans filthy."

    Gould listed five other problems in the 2001 memo and confirmed in a new memo on Aug. 6 to the Tanque Verde board that "all of the problems listed are still problems today."

    Tim Bee's position in the Senate--and his role on the appropriations committee--as Tanque Verde progresses with its controversial plan for a new high school prompted at least one board member to demand kid-glove treatment for the Bee Line.

    Board member Doug Hughes unilaterally ordered Ryan and Associate Superintendent Marty O'Shea to not rile the Bee brothers while start-stop funding for the high school was on legislative tables, O'Shea said.

    "Doug came into my office and told me to back off," O'Shea said. "He told Denise Ryan the same thing. This is when we were talking to Keith Bee about the late rent and the expired lease. You know me; I like to have the document. We didn't have a lease."

    O'Shea said Hughes, who sells school textbooks, said he was not solely focused on Tim Bee's vote to preserve funding for the high school, but for educational funding in general.

    State policy prohibits members of school boards from issuing individual orders. Directives must be approved by the full board in open session.

    But it worked. Tim Bee subsequently did not recuse himself from a key vote on funding for the high school, which has caused civil war in Tanque Verde and prompted a recall drive of Board President Dr. Sherrylyn Young.
    Neither Hughes nor Tim Bee returned calls from The Weekly.

  3. Robert Rowley, Tucson, ArizonaNovember 3, 2008 at 8:44 PM

    Arizonans Reflect On Times McCain Couldn't Handle Opposing Viewpoints
    Posted October 8, 2008

    If anyone is wondering why John McCain is not holding a commanding lead over Barack Obama in his own state, all you have to do is listen to the people of Arizona. Many of the people I have spoken with shared their concerns that McCain has a nasty temper when people disagree with him, does not make sound economic policy choices and fails to show true leadership.

    Joan Wendel

    Joan Wendel shared a story with me over lunch. A retired lawyer who earned her law degree at 49 after raising five children, Wendel's been volunteering for the Obama campaign because she thinks he will make an excellent, informed president. But there's another reason she's active, and it has to do with Obama's opponent. In 1984, she recalled, the U.S. was considering entering into a treaty with England to return political refugees, mostly Irish, who had fled to this country. Wendel had just completed a term at Trinity College in Dublin, where her studies included international law. When she learned of the treaty under consideration, Wendel wrote Arizona representatives urging them to vote against it, based on her expertise as a lawyer as well as her recent experience living and studying in Ireland. In response to the letter she received a phone call from then Congressman John McCain.

    At first, Wendel recalled, she was delighted, thinking she'd have an opportunity to share her expertise on treaties and international law with the congressman. But Wendel never got that opportunity. It soon became clear that the purpose of the call was not to discuss but to lecture; McCain had called to tell Joan Wendel why she was wrong. McCain, she said, kept telling her in a patronizing way, "You just don't understand the I.R.A." Wendel explained to McCain that having lived in Ireland she well understood the I.R.A.; she reiterated that she'd written to discuss the treaty under consideration and whether it violated international law. When it became clear to McCain that Wendel was not going to agree with him, McCain started getting angry. "He began to yell loudly at me but would not discuss treaties and international law, no matter how I tried to get him on that subject," Wendel recalled. "He became very angry. He was shouting at me." Wendell said McCain yelled so loudly he could be heard across the room by her elderly mother, who mouthed 'what's going on?' to her adult daughter. "At one point he asked if I didn't know he had just been elected by 80% of his constituents. I told him that was nice but I wanted to talk about treaties." Wendel finally came to the conclusion that McCain couldn't be reasoned with. "Eventually I told him if he was going to continue to yell there was no point in continuing our conversation. He shouted, 'You're absolutely right' and slammed the phone down on me. I've never forgotten this conversation and I have never had any respect for him since."

    Ken Jacobs

    Another story came from Ken Jacobs, Executive Director of the Pima County Democratic Party. In the early 1990's, Jacobs took an active part in the debate over the Clinton administration's 'don't ask, don't tell' policy concerning gays in the military. Members of Arizona's gay, lesbian and bisexual community were granted a meeting with Senator McCain to explain their position; Jacobs was one of five community members who met with McCain.

    But to understand what happened at the meeting, Jacobs said, he had to first relate what happened before the meeting. "When word got out we were meeting with McCain, I received phone calls from people who had met with the Senator over the years, for different reasons and under varying circumstances. They wanted to warn me, literally warn me, what was going to happen. They not only told me he was going to lose his temper, they wanted me to be aware of the warning signs that would lead up to it because they were concerned for me."

    Armed with this information and seated closest to McCain, Jacobs observed him during the meeting quite closely , looking for the physical cues he'd been warned about. Right from the start, Jacobs said McCain refused to make eye contact with him or any of the community members seated with him. "When I watched the way McCain refused to make eye contact with Barack Obama in the first debate, I recognized that immediately. That's how he treated us. He wouldn't look at any of us who had come to talk to; he gestured toward me occasionally but that was about it."

    John McCain, Jacobs continued, has only one reaction to people who don't agree with him: "Anyone presenting factual information that runs contrary to his position is held in disdain. Pure disdain." As the meeting went on, Jacobs started seeing the cues he'd been warned about. "I had been told that when McCain is about to lose his temper he gives certain physical cues. First, he starts to move his feet under the table while seated. Second, he adjusts and re-adjusts his jacket. Third, he starts moving his forearms on and off the table in a nervous way." And then, he had been warned, "he starts getting heated and the blood starts flowing and his neck turns very red. And when the redness spreads to his face and white blotches start appearing, watch out."

    After a few minutes of discussion, Jacobs said McCain exhibited each of those physical cues, in order, and "when McCain's face turned red and the white blotches appeared, his aides suddenly cut the meeting short and hustled the Senator out of the room." So ended the meeting. "In all my years of politics," Jacobs added, "in all my dealings with people on all sides, it was the strangest meeting with a public official I've ever had."

    Jacobs cited another reason why he could never vote for his own senator for president. Jacobs recalled that McCain headed up Phil Gramm's brief presidential bid in the 1990's, and in support of it McCain flew to Oregon for a fundraiser with the Oregon Citizens Alliance, an anti-gay conservative Christian political group which had launched a ballot measure to amend the state constitution. According to civil rights experts who monitored the measure, it would not only have prevented special rights for the gay, lesbian and bisexual community, it would have mandated state discrimination against sexual minorities.

    Jacobs said, "McCain refused to make the results of that meeting public, to his own constituents. I called friends in Oregon and found out about it and we were the ones who brought it to the public's attention." There was a lot of ugliness surrounding this group's initiative, which reached a violent culmination when a woman with a "No on Ballot Measure 9" sign in her front yard was killed by a firebomb. Jacobs said even though McCain likes to profess that he has a hands-off, live and let live approach to those of different sexual orientations, he felt McCain's real character was revealed by the fact that "he would fly 1,500 miles to break bread with a group like that."

    Mike and Chris Dayton

    Not all these stories concern McCain's temper. Mike and Chris Dayton are retired public school teachers; McCain won't get their vote because they feel he doesn't represent them. Dayton says a McCain presidency would be a continuation of the Bush presidency, and these two retirees say their wallets cannot afford four more years of George W. Bush.

    "When we first retired we felt comfortable with our savings and we were looking forward to traveling, enjoying our hobbies, remodeling our home and investing in our health. And look what's happened. Gas was $1.25 when Bush took office and now it's well over $3.00 and the oil companies have made record profits. Health insurance has gone up over 100%, college tuition has skyrocketed, and basic necessities are too high."

    They've always lived responsibly but now have to be very careful, shopping sales to make ends meet. During the current economic crisis, Mike said he was disgusted by the lack of leadership shown by his senator: "McCain wasn't leading, he was grandstanding, running to Washington to save the economy and claim it as his plan but it backfired. And then he blamed Obama. PATHETIC." Mike and Chris agree that in contrast, "Obama has shown leadership and intelligence."
    For those still undecided about this presidency, Ken Jacobs had a message, based on his own experience with the Arizona senator. "When considering McCain, remember this. "said Jacobs. "There's never been a political movement where John McCain's principles could not be sacrificed."

  4. Robert Rowley, Tucson, ArizonaNovember 3, 2008 at 8:45 PM

    McCain Plans Federal Health Cuts
    Medicare, Medicaid Spending Would Be Reduced to Offset Proposed Tax Credit

    * OCTOBER 6, 2008

    John McCain would pay for his health plan with major reductions to Medicare and Medicaid, a top aide said, in a move that independent analysts estimate could result in cuts of $1.3 trillion over 10 years to the government programs.

    The Republican presidential nominee has said little about the proposed cuts, but they are needed to keep his health-care plan "budget neutral," as he has promised. The McCain campaign hasn't given a specific figure for the cuts, but didn't dispute the analysts' estimate.

    In the months since Sen. McCain introduced his health plan, statements made by his campaign have implied that the new tax credits he is proposing to help Americans buy health insurance would be paid for with other tax increases.

    But Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Sen. McCain's senior policy adviser, said Sunday that the campaign has always planned to fund the tax credits, in part, with savings from Medicare and Medicaid. Those government health-care programs serve seniors, poor families and the disabled. Medicare spending for the fiscal year ended Sept. 30 is estimated at $457.5 billion.

    Mr. Holtz-Eakin said the Medicare and Medicaid changes would improve the programs and eliminate fraud, but he didn't detail where the cuts would come from. "It's about giving them the benefit package that has been promised to them by law at lower cost," he said.

    Both Sen. McCain and his Democratic rival, Sen. Barack Obama, have recently sought to refocus on health care. The issue once ranked at the top of voters' domestic concerns, but has in recent months been eclipsed by energy and the economy.

    Sen. McCain charges that the Obama plan, which would create a government-run marketplace in which people could buy coverage, would lead to government-run health care. Sen. Obama charges that Sen. McCain's plan would leave many people unable to get insurance.

    Sen. Obama's campaign turned up the volume in a major push on health care over the weekend with two days of attacks from the stump, four new television advertisements, a series of health-care events across the country and fliers to voters' homes in swing states.

    Sen. Obama is focused on Sen. McCain's plan to offer a new tax credit of $2,500 per person and $5,000 per family toward insurance premiums. This would allow people to buy health coverage on the open market, where they may have more choices and might look for a better bargain.

    In exchange, the government would begin taxing the value of health benefits people get through work. If an employer spends $10,000 to buy a worker health insurance, the worker would pay taxes on that money.

    "It's a shell game," Sen. Obama told an outdoor rally of 28,000 people Sunday in Asheville, N.C. "Sen. McCain gives you a tax credit with one hand -- but raises your taxes with the other."

    Sen. McCain's plan actually would lower taxes for most people. But that means the plan wouldn't pay for itself, because it cuts certain taxes more than it raises others.

    The federal government imposes two taxes on wages, generally: an income tax, which funds the government's general operations, and the payroll tax, paid for by employers and employees, which funds Social Security and Medicare. If Sen. McCain were to apply both of these to the value of health benefits, he could fully pay for his new tax credits. That is what aides have in the past suggested he would do.

    In April, when Sen. McCain gave a major speech about his health plan, Mr. Holtz-Eakin, the senior policy adviser, said the tax provisions alone were budget neutral -- meaning that health benefits would have to be subject to both income and payroll taxes.

    Campaign officials have regularly implied since then that the tax plan was a wash. In the vice-presidential debate last week, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin described Sen. McCain's proposed tax credits and said: "That's budget neutral. That doesn't cost the government anything, as opposed to Barack Obama's plan to mandate health-care coverage and have this universal, government-run program."

    Mr. Holtz-Eakin said the campaign never intended to apply the payroll tax to health benefits. That means that most people would see a net tax cut, contrary to Sen. Obama's assertions. Only those with very rich benefits packages are likely to see a net increase in taxes. But it also means that Sen. McCain must fill a huge budget hole -- which the campaign says will come from cuts to Medicare and Medicaid.

    The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, a Washington think tank, estimates that the McCain plan would cost the government $1.3 trillion over 10 years. The plan would allow as many as five million more people to have insurance, it estimates.

    Mr. Holtz-Eakin said the plan is accurately described as budget neutral because it assumes enough savings in Medicare and Medicaid spending to make up the difference. He said the savings would come from eliminating Medicare fraud and by reforming payment policies to lower the overall cost of care. He said the new tax credits will help some low-income people avoid joining Medicaid. The campaign also proposes increasing Medicare premiums for wealthier seniors.

    Sen. Obama also would rely on some Medicare savings to pay for his health-care plan, which would offer subsidies to help consumers pay for premiums. The Tax Policy Center estimates that his plan would cost $1.6 trillion over 10 years and cover 34 million more people.