Monday, September 11, 2006

Tancredo supported Minuteman candidate in AZ causes party rift.

Fearing they might be left with no choice but to run Minuteman Randy Graf as the parties candidate from Arizona's 8th CD despite the fact that his extremist views could possibly guarantee a Democratic win in November, national Republicans have closed ranks and thrown their support behind Graf's opponent, Steve Huffman, in tomorrow's primary.

In a rare move, the National Republican Congressional Committe has funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars in advertising and contributions into the race in hopes to assure that leading anti-immigration advocate, Tom Tancredo's, hand picked candidate looses his primary bid.

tags: , , , , ,

One contribution in particular has caused Tancredo(R-CO-6) some concern.

According to Federal Election Commission records, the Colorado Republican Commitee donated $5000 to the Huffman campaign this past week, causing a rift between Tancredo and the state party leadership.

Tancredo spokesman Carlos Espinosa said his boss; "(is) definitely not happy about it. He wants to talk to them, figure out what's going on. This money should be more of a priority for state candidates."

According to Team America PAC, an anti-immigration advocacy group formed by the Colorado Congressman and pundit Bay Buchanan, the meddling in local primaries by the Republican establishment is unheard of.

Buchanan denounced the national Republicans last Friday adding that, "they're working overtime to beat a Tancredo/Team America candidate,"

Team America endorsed Candidate Randy Graf has support of 42% of Republican while the closest challenger, Steve Huffman has only 13%. Graf has also raised thirty thousand dollars more than Huffman.
Randy is about as good a candidate as you can get. He was major supporter of the pro-borders Prop 200 was overwhelmingly passed by Arizona voters in 2004, and has a solidly pro-enforcement record in the State house. Huffman, in contrast, has said he would “never” join Tom Tancredo’s Immigration Reform Caucus. He supports amnesty and guest worker plan because it would be “economic suicide” if we don’t.

It is almost unheard of that the RNCC will take sides in an open primary, but now they are pouring in hundreds of thousands of dollars against Graf.

Team America PAC

The problem for team Tancredo is that although immigrant-bashing tough talk plays well with right-wing primary voters, it appears to have become a decided liability in the general election.

…so concerned are national Republicans about Mr. Graf, who once sponsored a bill to let patrons carry guns into bars and restaurants (it did not pass), that they have taken the rare step of spending more than $200,000 on advertising endorsing the more moderate Steve Huffman, also a former state representative.

The move, which other Republican candidates have called unfair, apparently stemmed from a belief that Mr. Graf would lose in a general election to the Democratic front-runner, Gabrielle Giffords, a former state senator.


A recent Arizona Daily Star poll, conducted by Zimmerman and Associates and Marketing Intelligence, showed Ms. Giffords leading her Democratic primary opponents. The poll, released last week, also showed that in a general election matchup, Ms. Giffords would beat Mr. Graf 46 percent to 36 percent, with the rest undecided, and would defeat Mr. Huffman 42 to 39 percent, though with the margin of sampling error it would be a tossup. The poll, which surveyed 800 likely voters from Sept. 1-4, had a margin of sampling error of five percentage points.

New York Times

Apparently, even in his home state, the powers that be are hedging their bets when it comes to Tancredo's extremist views.

As for Graf, his campaign manager RT Gregg said he's not worried about the NRCC, claiming GOP voters will be "incensed" that national Republicans would try to "dictate how the district should vote."


Pondering American said...

I fear too little too late. Also it is likely to backfire unfort. It seems us Repubs are going to be stuck with Graf I fear. Well we shall find out tonight

Duke1676 said...

Looks like despite the best efforts by the NRCC to prevent it, you guys are now stuck with Graf. Now what they do with him will be interesting to see.

Will they just give up the seat and leave Graf hanging in the wind...or will they support him wholeheartedly in hopes to keep the seat, and run the risk of having his extremist views hurt them in other races.

You guys are left with a very unpleasant set of choices. Graf makes an ideal poster-boy for the "crazy extremist right"...and you know we will use that to our best advantage...unfortunately for you, I think the party waited too long to try to take Graf out. If they had started earlier, they might have made a difference and they wouldn't be left with this predicament.... now they're stuck running Chris Simcox's's David Duke all over again.