Who bankrolled the billboards?
One might think that Hiremath-Hornat-Snider-Waters must be really popular with the citizens when their campaign signs are nearly the size of billboards. But is it the citizens who are bankrolling these huge signs to help keep them in office? Not likely.
Their 2014 re-election campaign was funded 80 percent by developers and builders and only 20 percent by Oro Valley citizens. Meanwhile, the challengers campaigns were funded 100 percent by the citizens. Additionally, despite Hiremath being the incumbent, citizens donated only $114.00 more to his campaign than to his challenger, Pat Straney. Perhaps Mayor Hiremath isn’t as popular as he’d like us to believe.
During that same campaign, Hiremath received over $20,000 from the special-interest development community, while Hornat-Snider-Waters received about $10,000 each from those same contributors, for a grand total of over $50,000.
Developers “TRUMP” the citizens
The question to ponder is this: Why do developers, builders, and real estate moguls donate such large sums of money to these four politicians? Real estate developer, Donald Trump, answered this question in two recent television interviews. Trump said he donates to political campaigns because, “When they call, I give. And you know what? When I need something from them two or three years later, I call them.” Trump also said he donates because, “I’m a businessman. I need access. I want to have access.”
Now that Trump is a politician, he has stated that he won’t take donations from special interests because he knows first-hand that donations buy influence and he won’t be bought. Whatever you think of him, he knows all about, “The Art of the Deal.”
And there you have it. Special interests donate large sums of money to campaigns for guaranteed access to those politicians once they get elected. Therefore, a vote for Hiremath, Hornat, Snider, or Waters is really a vote for the continued wholesale destruction of the desert, rampant development, more ruined scenic vistas, more people, less wildlife.
Don’t be fooled by their “billboards” or their expensive full-color newspaper ads or their glossy postcards arriving in your mailbox nearly every day touting their “proven leadership.” Keep in mind who paid for all those ads and what those contributors stand to gain from the incumbents’ re-election.
Down on Main Street
There’s actually a subliminal message in all their giant “look at us” advertising. The incumbents fear that it’s not just “the whiny minority” that’s coming after them. It’s Main Street.
Diane Peters has lived in Oro Valley since 2003, moving here to escape the humidity of the East Coast. Combining her love of animals and writing, she wrote her first protest letter at the age of 12 to the Canadian Prime Minister in support of ending the annual baby harp seal hunt. Years later, she flew by helicopter to the ice floes off the coast of Newfoundland where she was able to pet baby harp seals recently born on the frozen tundra. Her other interests include reading, nature photography, traveling to National Parks, Native American history, art galleries, museums, and following politics. In her past life, she worked in medical research at various University Hospitals in New England, including coordinating Oncology Clinical Trials and preparing manuscripts for publication in medical journals. Her husband is an Army veteran who served in Germany and South Korea. A former hippie, he attended the 1969 Woodstock Festival in Upstate New York.