My grandfather often told me that it takes a fool to argue with a fool. He was right. Lately, I’ve been repeating his advice to my supporters who have urged me to address the baseless claims and negative campaign being waged by my opponent about me and my campaign to be Tempe’s next mayor.
I’ve taken the hits. I’ve done the right thing by choosing to talk about the issues that I believe Tempe voters want us to focus on. Many of you know, I’m a bridge-builder, not a bomb-thrower.
But I’ve come to realize that my opponent’s negative campaigning is a commentary on his plans for Tempe, and I feel compelled to set the record straight.
I support smart economic development like bringing a hotel conference center to our downtown. This center will help leverage assets like the Center for the Arts to become the supercharged economic engine we know they can be.
My opponent opposes this hotel conference center because he’d like to build his own over his restaurant and has previously asked the City Council to approve zoning for it. My only stake in this project is the betterment of our community for generations to come.
I support creative investments like Tempe Marketplace and have supported seeking federal grants to transform what was a toxic waste dump on the riverbed into a thriving economic center that created local jobs.
My opponent opposes these community investments because his ideology doesn’t afford him the understanding that local governments can leverage federal resources to provide the private sector with opportunities for success – success that creates private sector jobs.
I support engaging regional and national leaders to strengthen Tempe’s economy. Tempe is best served when working as a regional partner with our neighbors to compete nationally and globally, and this is why the Arizona Republic endorsed my candidacy for mayor.
My opponent believes he can advocate for Tempe in a global economy from inside a bunker. This lack of vision illustrates a fundamental misunderstanding of how the world works.
And for the record, any time I traveled to advocate for the City of Tempe, locally, regionally and nationally, I have done so to move Tempe and our region forward. Throughout my time on the Council, I have disclosed everything state law and the City Charter has required of me as an elected official.
My opponent on the other hand had been reprimanded by local media and forced to amend his campaign finance reports multiple times in order to comply with state law.
Unfortunately, a campaign that should have been waged on ideas, vision and leadership has been denigrated into a smear campaign attacking my integrity, character and family. Make no mistake, the closer we get to Election Day, the unsubstantiated claims, misleading attacks, and slanderous accusations will only get worse. Tempe deserves better.
Thank you for standing with me.