Governor Brewer and Arizona’s Future

by francine Hardaway on October 10, 2010

Last week, the Twitter account for John Dougherty’s Senate race sent out a tweet that Governor Jan Brewer was rumored to be seriously ill– too ill to finish a four-year term. Now you could dismiss this as “silly season” rumor-mongering, because Dougherty ran as a Democrat and Brewer is a Republican. Or because it came out first on Twitter, and not from a reputable journalistic source like the Arizona Republic. I don’t dismiss it as a rumor. I predict that it will turn out to be true. More important, it matters so much to the future of Arizona that voters deserve to know!

I have lived in Arizona for 40 years. During that time, there have been many instances where, because something happened to the Governor (death, impeachment, political appointment to Washington, appointment to an ambassadorship) and we wound up with an ill-equipped person as our Governor in mid stream. The last time was, well, last time– when President Obama appointed Janet Napolitano to Homeland Security, and she bailed on us, leaving the state in fiscal disarray (no blame, just observation). Governor Brewer was Secretary of State, and was elevated to Governor because Arizona doesn’t have a Lieutenant Governor.

We can’t afford  this to happen again. The state is already known for poor governance, and the citizens are being buffeted by budget cuts while the businesses are buffeted by the immigration positions Brewer has taken.

I don’t really have a dog in this hunt, as I am a registered Independent. I am usually far away from the rumor mill . But I am very close to Twitter, and to trusted sources on Twitter.

John Dougherty isn’t a politician. He is an investigative journalist, and God knows why he even ran for office. In the 25 years I have followed his work, he has broken story after story for Village Voice Media, which is known for award-winning investigative journalism. I know those guys as well. For forty years. Dougherty has reasons to be tweeting this, I believe, that are more journalistic than political.

Why hasn’t the “lamestream media” reported this yet? Because they have to worry about future access to the politicians they cover, and they’ve got to dot every I and cross every t before they go to print. I have also heard that the story will break this week.

I am a student of new journalism: I support collaborative and citizen journalism,  I read bloggers, I listen to Jay Rosen and Dave Winer’s podcast “Rebooting the News,” I heard @ryantate talking about GawkerMedia’s decision to stop worrying about “access” to sources, and now I feel willing to tell my friends where to look. I feel comfortable talking about this as a rumor, but one in which I personally believe.

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October 13, 2010 at 2:01 pm

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Dan Munro October 10, 2010 at 8:43 pm

FYI – absolutely no idea if it’s related – but Gov Brewer was a complete no-show this last week at a fairly high-profile event where the State gave $1M to ASU for their new Venture Catalyst program. Crow was there – but Eileen Klein (Chief Of Staff) was the stand-in. The argument was (of course) that it is campaign season.

Donna Hussein Gratehouse October 10, 2010 at 9:15 pm

The media should worry less about their own access to politicians and more about the public’s right to access to the facts. Honestly, is the possibility of an “exclusive” interview THAT important?

Barb October 10, 2010 at 10:29 pm

If John Dougherty said it, I believe it. His investigative skills are unquestionably the best!

hardaway October 11, 2010 at 1:56 am

With her nrnrnFrancine Hardaway, PH.drn@hardawayrn816.WRITTENrnrnHttp://

hardaway October 11, 2010 at 1:58 am

She isn’t really campaigning and doesn’t need to.rnrnFrancine Hardaway, PH.drn@hardawayrn816.WRITTENrnrnHttp://

Anonymous October 11, 2010 at 12:43 pm

Ask the Gov. to confirm or deny.nThe voters have a right to know if this is true and vote accordingly.

hardaway October 11, 2010 at 12:55 pm

I am hoping to create pressure on her to do that. rnrnFrancine Hardaway, Ph DrnGV: 816.WRITTEN

Donna Hussein Gratehouse October 11, 2010 at 9:44 pm

Something you said that’s been bothering me all day is your contention that you “don’t have a dog in this hunt” due to being independent. Politics effects everyone, even those who think they are too pure for it. If Brewer is reelected along with the Republicans in the legislature this state will take more cuts to education, social services, public safety, etc. When you’re, say, waiting 20 minutes for the ambulance to arrive it might become more apparent to you that you’ve had a dog in this hunt all along.

hardaway October 11, 2010 at 9:52 pm

Oh, I mean I am not operating out of a partisan connection, not that I don’t care. I care deeply about good government, which is hard to find from either party these days.rnrnFrancine Hardaway, Ph DrnGV: 816.WRITTEN

Ray October 17, 2010 at 5:24 am

I hear now that the KOLD-TV footage shows the bandage on her lower neck, exactly where a thyroid biopsy would be according to an innertubes video on the procedure. Now, major journalists of the lamestream smell a rat. Given that Brewer seemed to treat them terribly about the beheading thing, I imagine they will go after the story. Even Fox Phoenix says she will have to come clean. Some are saying a major paper in Phoenix has the whole story and will break it this week.

hardaway October 17, 2010 at 2:01 pm

I just wanted to tell them where to look.

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