Multiple sources tell me that Ben Quayle is planning to move to District 6 and run against Schweikert*.
So it’s looking like District 9 is going to be an open seat in a swing district—talk about a bloggers dream. These things are difficult to predict, but here are my thoughts on the key players.
On the Democratic side, it’s going to be Schapira verses Sinema. I was sitting next to Kyrsten on the set of Sunday Square Off when she said that she “loved Russell Pearce.” In Democratic circles, she’s taking a lot of grief for that remark, but give me a break. Haven’t we been talking about civility for the last year? Don’t we harkin back to the day when Legislators could disagree on the issues, but remain friends? Don’t you think that Barry Goldwater would say that he loved Mo Udall?
I think Sinema wins the primary.
On the Republican side, we are going to see a replay of the 2010 race but without Quayle. I think you will see Steve Moak and Vernon Parker plus Chandler city Councilman Martin Sepulveda. One interesting twist is that County Supervisor Don Stapley has been conducting a poll in the district.
Stapley is likely to jump into the race, not because he can win it, but because he has a better chance of winning a Congressional Race than he does getting re-elected. I’m a bit sympathetic to Stapley--the way that Andrew Thomas abused him was truly pathetic. However, I believe that there was at least some fire under all that smoke. And I think that Stapley ended his career as a Supervisor when he endorsed Jerry Lewis. (Plus, it seems like he votes with Mary Rose more than he votes with the Republicans.)
Stapley has already drawn a strong opponent in Steve Chucri. Chucri is well connected, well financed and well organized. I don’t see any way that Stapley can keep his seat. Of course, I don’t see any way that he can win the primary in District 9 either.
So it looks to me like Sinema verses Moak in the General. That’s a great race. I think it will be a Republican wave year, so I have to call the race for Moak.
(Take these predictions for what they are worth. Last week I thought that Paton and Newman would face off in Tucson. I still think that Newman will run, but Paton has announced for the eastern Arizona Seat.)
Obviously I'm friends with Schweikert, so consider the source, but I have some thoughts on Quayle's move. I think it's being viewed in Washington as a totally selfish act. Quayle is by far the best candidate the Repblicans can run in District 9. He's an incumbent with a strong name and a proven ability to raise money. But instead of competing in a swing district, he's chosing to challenge another conservative Republican. If Republicans lose District 9, it will be because Quayle chose to play it safe.
Who will win? Those of you who have lived in Scottsdale for most of your life will remember where you were in 1978 when Bob Crane was killed. Schweikert was washing dishes at the Windmill Theatre where Crane performed... Quayle was still in diapers and was being shuttled between Washington DC and Indiana.
Schweikert has been running for Congress since high school. He first ran for the legislature in 1988--when Quayle was eleven--and was first elected in 1990. He ran for Congress in 1994, ran for Treasurer in 2004, Congress in 2008 and then won 1n 2010. That's a lot of built in name recognition.
How about money? I'd guess that Quayle will ultimately raise more money. But campaign money--like most everything else--has diminishing marginal utility. If Schweikert spends $ 2 million in a primary and Quayle spends $3 million, they will both have his a saturation point.
So I say that based on personal connections in the district, name recognition and political experience, the District goes to Schweikert. I concede that Quayle will probably have a monitary advantage, but will probably run a high overhead campain, so the dollars per voter amount will probably be the same and both will candidates will reach a full saturation point.
One thing is clear. If Schweikert defeats Quayle in 2012, there's nothing standing between Schweikert and McCain's seat in 2016. (Except possibly McCain) Frankly, since Schweikert and Quayle were destined to go head to head for the Senate in 2016, it would be better for Schweikert if the contest were soon and confined to Scottsdale instead of 4 years from now and state wide.
Those are my thoughts. I respect the Quayle family but Schweikert is my friend and my loyalties are clear. If you disagree with my analysis there's plenty of room in the comment section.