Thursday, June 7, 2007

Time for Candidates to Step Up

(Cross posted to Daily Kos Diary--please recommend; maybe they will pay attention to Utah one day.)

As noted below, Utah's Attorney-General, Mark Shurtleff, has demoted two State Office of Education lawyers because they did not follow lock-step with his support for vouchers no matter what the people of Utah want.

With today's purge, the time has come for candidates to step up to the plate and challenge Governor Huntsman and Attorney-General Shurtleff. Governor Huntsman has shown the incompetence, weakness, cowardice, and waffling which I knew would happen since 2004. He silently allowed an unproven and unwanted voucher program to go into law. He then tried to have it both ways when the referendum petition drive started, saying he would respect the voice of the people. Then he backed off; then he felt a blowback and reversed himself again. He threw out trial balloons on special sessions, but decided again to submit to the legislature and be a weak, cowardly governor who believes he has no power. It is now time for a candidate, at least a Democrat but maybe a Republican, who will have the courage to stand up for what he or she believes in and stays consistent. We need candidates who will fight this plague of gubernatorial shallowness and lead our state the way most Utahns want.

As for Shurtleff, his actions today demonstrate he has no judicial intelligence, tolerance for legal diversity, or even plain ethics to extricate himself from a situation where his interests are dangerously and clearly conflicted. The Utah Attorney General's office used to be a place where legal reasoning and diversity were welcomed and political feelings were put aside in the name of justice. Today, it is clear Shurtleff's office is only for political hacks, and he is emulating his federal superior. There must be some candidates out there who have the fortitude and anger to run. Democrats should obviously have some one out there, and there has got to a Republican lawyer who is angry at him for any number of issues (his pro-amnesty immigration stance, Parker Jensen nanny state ideas, faux polygamy enforcement, anyone?)

It is obvious that the road is hard for both of these opposition candidates. KSL has apparently dropped its contract with SurveyUSA, so they don't even give us monthly Governor approval ratings anymore. I haven't seen a local poll (Dan Jones, Valley Research, etc) on either Huntsman or Shurtleff in months either. It appears the media has given in to the Republican inevitability syndrome, not even caring to report on how people feel about their current office holders. Mind you, Democrats have done little considering we don't have any candidates already.

However, now we must have people stand up and start fighting against these juggernauts. I would suggest they stay low-key until after the referendum and let the Governor and AG continue to not act and act dictatorially, respectively. They should stand up immediately after the referendum, which I hope they support, and push for political action at the next general election.

SLCSpin: Exclusive: Carol Lear Letter Of Termination

Exclusive: Jean Hill Letter Of Termination

Salt Lake Tribune: Shurtleff revokes 'special assistant AG' status of attorneys advising state education office

Deseret Morning News: Shurtleff tells state education office attorneys to halt legal advice

KSL: Shurtleff Terminates Status of Two Attorneys Over School Voucher Issue

Third Avenue: Shurtleff fires special DAGs for disagreeing

The Utah Amicus: News Release: Democratic lawmakers reach across the aisle to resolve voucher mess

Utah State Democratic Party: Arrogance and Abuse of Power

JM Bell: SLCspin Broke it first! - A.G. Mark “First Amendment should be conditional” Shurtleff fires Carol Lear and Jean Hill

1 comment:

Rob said...

Maybe we should get one of the two "terminated" attorneys to run. They give much better legal counsel.