One of the interesting side bars from this week’s ouster of two members of the Rio Nuevo Board is that Jonathan Paton has still not been replaced on that body.
Paton is currently running for congress in CD 1. How are things going in that race? Well, kind of sluggish.
His first quarter fundraising was at $197,000, dwarfed by Ann Kirkpatrick’s $1.1 million. He’s running against a crew of unknowns (the strongest of which seems to be Sedona businessman Doug Wade), but he ain’t exactly known in the district either. His old district 30 has no overlap with CD 1, and bragging about endorsements from Andy Tobin and the like probably doesn’t mean much to a voter in Flagstaff or Safford.
Also, once you get beyond getting his name out there, how much will he have to do to prove his right-wing cred? Despite a conservative record, he got beat last go around by a candidate that offered more red meat to hungry tea partiers than he did.
I think he comes out of the primary, but with his anemic fundraising, how much money will he have left to face Kirkpatrick? Even if Wenona Benally-Baldenegro starts to run a stronger campaign, Kirkpatrick will be left with a lot more resources than Paton.
By the way, expect to hear the “Payday Paton” phrase again. It’s no accident that Gabrielle Giffords’s campaign threw that out there last time: lobbying for payday loan magnates doesn’t fly any better among rural voters than it does among urban and suburban ones.