Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Tuesday Morning in Downtown Phoenix: Official Drawing for Arizona Presidential Primary Ballot at the Historic Senate Chambers at the State Capitol

This morning we were again at the Arizona State Capitol

in downtown Phoenix for the official drawing for the Arizona presidential preference primary ballot order

for the Green and Republican parties.

Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett presided as candidates or their representatives drew lots

from a historic trophy, given by the Brooklyn Navy Yard in 1915 to the USS Arizona in 1915,

and announced the results. We went up first of all the candidates because we were the first Green to file,

and had our campaign manager, Bunny Greenblatt, draw for us.

She handed the paper to Secretary Bennett and he announced that we got ballot position five out of the six candidates in the February 28 primary. We had made sure to wear all Green for luck, but it didn't work.

Neither did evil Sheriff Joe Arpaio. This fat old cannibal from the house of walking swastikas drew number 17 out of 23 for Texas Governor Rick Perry on the Republican ballot.

Many of the candidates are part of Project White House 2012,

a civic project of the Tucson Weekly newspaper, which has encouraged ordinary people to get on the ballot.

All of Secretary Bennett's staff worked hard to make this a great event and were extremely helpful to everyone.

Secretary Bennett himself, using white gloves, drew for those candidates who weren't there, and one of his staff members, as he said, "played Vanna White" and put up the candidate's name in the proper ballot order. (Bunny and I did it ourselves.)

It was a tense moment as Arizona House Speaker Andy Tobin went to draw for Mitt Romney, who got ballot position number 9, which the Speaker hopes was good enough to get him a job as undersecretary of something.

When Sheriff Arpaio went up to draw for Rick Perry,

he apparently noticed Bunny sitting next to me. The next we thing we knew, a deputy asked her for proof that she wasn't in this country illegally.

Actually more annoying to Bunny was news radio station KFYI getting her name wrong:
Arizona's lax requirements to get on the ballot leads to colorful candidates on the ballot. Green Party candidate Richard Grayson brought his stuffed animal, Bunny Green Black, who he claims is his campaign manager to pick his ballot number.

This is presidential candidate Gerard Davis of Phoenix, who was accompanied by his wife Sonya and their child. He is number 6 out of six on the Green Party ballot, but the last shall be first, according to Rick Santorum (whose representative, a really nice man, was wearing a sweater vest just like his candidate).

This is Kip Dean, one of the Republican presidential candidates you've never heard of, perhaps because unlike Romney, Paul, Gingrich, Santorum, Perry, Santorum, Bachmann, Cain and the serious ones, Kip actually knows that we're not in the 1950s anymore and he's not running for leader of Leave It to Beaverland.

Kip wrote this and posted this pic on Facebook:
Favorite part of my day--the rolling of Sheriff Joe's eyes and his comment of "gawd" when he saw Richard Grayson's campaign manager (the bunny hand puppet pictured in the middle of us) pull his ballot spot slip for the Green Party Presidential Primary. My thoughts were different as I thought the bunny puppet was smarter than John Huntsman's campaign staff and Rick Perry's racist jackass slip puller (Joe himself).

These people in the back looked like politicians and seemed out of place.

The press was really interested in why former Utah Governor and Ambassador to China did not make the ballot when all anyone had to do was sign a simple declaration of candidacy and get it notarized. Secretary Bennett said that if Gov. Huntsman was going to challenge his not being on the Arizona ballot, he'd better do it fast because Maricopa County planned to start printing their ballots tonight.

Arizona Green Party co-chair Angel Torres drew for both of the presidential candidates officially recognized by the Green Party of the United States, Jill Stein and Kent Mesplay, and at the end of the drawing took photos of the ballot so the Arizona Green Party will know which of its own candidates it will sue to kick off the ballot this year.

Bunny and I were grateful to everyone at the Secretary of State's office and to all the fine candidates running in the Arizona presidential preference election.

It was wonderful to see American democracy at work, sort of.

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