Post-Election News and Notices
November 9, 2022
Dear Coconino Democrats,
I just finished watching President Biden’s hour-plus press conference. If you missed it, I urge you to find a replay. This is a man determined to lead the American people to better times and greatness. Before the election, Biden was panned for saying that this election was not about the economy but about saving democracy and the basic human rights of women. He just led Democrats through the best midterm election for any President since John F. Kennedy. He noted the victories and the defeats. He acknowledged the economic pain and noted his efforts and determination to ease it. He announced his limits (no abortion ban, no cuts to Social Security or Medicare) but also expressed his willingness to accommodate. He asked the American people to keep watching him deliver for them.
Our losses of yesterday hurt. The loss of Congressman O’Halleran is especially hurtful to our diverse district and to those most in need who live here. But we and he left nothing in the field in the fight for his re-election. Gerrymandering in 2021 determined his defeat, not any lack of our effort or his worthiness.
It is too early to tell about most of our statewide races. Perhaps most importantly for the future, it appears Democrat Adrian Fontes defeated insurrectionist and election-denier Finchem. The Governor’s race and others hang in the balance, and we’ll see the result when all the votes are counted next week. Locally, Flagstaff elected quality Democratic leaders to City Council and the Unified School District and passed propositions that will advance the quality of life for all of us. Statewide, Arizonans finally passed a tougher campaign finance disclosure law, protected consumers from predatory interest rates and collection methods, and gave Dreamers in-state tuition. We’re making progress in this purple state.
Thank you to our donors who gave us the resources to execute an incredible county campaign. Thank you to our volunteers who canvassed, phoned, folded, stuffed, wrote, and stamped. Thank you to our Operations Manager, Monique Fresquez, who came on board in late winter and endured a trial by fire in Arizona politics.
It has been my honor and pleasure to serve as your Chair since July of 2020, and in other positions before that. My term is up on December 10. As I announced at our September meeting, I will not run for re-election.
Notice of Party Meetings
This Saturday, November 12, is our next County Party meeting. We’ll meet in person at the Murdoch Center beginning at 10:00, with an available Zoom link. On December 10, we meet for our every-two-year Reorganization Meeting, which involves the election of officers and State Committee Members. All Democrats are welcome to attend these meetings. Only Elected PCs may vote at the Reorganization Meeting. If you are a PC, please make every effort to attend on December 10. Our State Committee Members will join others from around the state to elect new state officers on January 28, 2023.
This Saturday, we will begin the meeting with a post-election debrief. Keith Brekhus and Sharon Edgar will analyze the election results. Both have been through several election cycles in Northern Arizona politics and know our Northern Arizona political landscape. We want to hear from those of you who worked on this campaign about your experiences.
Then, special guest Mary Darling, Arizona Democratic Party Director of Party Affairs will discuss Reorganization and the importance of County Party work to the success of Democratic Campaigns. I will review our by-laws and discuss the conduct of our December election and answer any questions you have.
Precinct committee persons in Pinal County have been leading an exploratory process directed toward forming an official Legislative District 7 Committee. Marie Sansone will report on that.
I look forward to seeing you all Saturday when, I hope, we’re all rested and ready to spend some quality time with each other.
Thank You to Those Who Made Election Day Work
More Democrats served as poll observers this year than ever before. You served as witnesses to a process executed by our county poll workers that ensured that every registered voter who wanted to had the opportunity to vote and that those votes were secure. We still have volunteers working today and for the next 10 days to observe and audit the vote tabulation. These are essential functions delegated by statute to party members.
Frank Branham went above and beyond: After serving an early morning shift of poll watching, he stood outside in the dark at another polling place lighting the way for voters to find their way to the dark entrance from dusk until the polls closed.
Deydrek Scott, our organizer in Tuba City, performed the extraordinary feat of finding replacement observers and training them at the last minute — all after personally canvassing hundreds of doors in a heroic GOTV effort.
Thank you also to our Vice-Chairs, Aubrey Sonderegger and John Propster, who planned and executed an Election Night Watch Party in cooperation with the O’Halleran campaign. Special thanks to John, whom I called out early Tuesday morning for an emergency visit to one polling place that was having a crisis.
To all the observers who woke before dawn and to those who stayed up to watch the count until 3 am today: Thanks.
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