Less than a month away from the September primary, election year 2002 is already in full swing.
And the race for governor is no exception: with four democrats, three republicans, two libertarians and an independent looking to succeed Jane Hull as Arizona's next governor.
Speaking before about 250 people Tuesday night at the University Marriott, Darcy Olsen said, "This is the only forum in the state in which all 10 candidates are participating at one time." Olsen is executive director of the Goldwater Institute-- a non-partisan research group out of Phoenix that teamed up with the Tucson Citizen to bring the forum here.
"You want to do that not just in big cities like Phoenix and Tucson," Olsen says. "But really, if at all possible, you want to get the candidates to visit all the state...and meet with people they'll be representing."
For a lot of folks, the race for governor begins here. Many people are unfamiliar with the names and faces behind this year's race. But that could change with the first ever debate right here in Tucson.
David Fossdal is one such example...he's a committee member for precinct 71. "I felt it was necessary to come down because really I don't know much about the people from Maricopa County other than Janet Napolitano," Fossdal says. "I'm here to learn."
Fossdal isn't alone...a lot of people know very little about the candidates, with the exception of the attorney general. But according to some, that doesn't necessarily mean an easy win for Napolitano come November. "Politics is kind of like horse racing," Olsen says. "You can say you think so and so's going to win, they're leading, it's nose to nose and in the end there can be a complete upset."
Fossdal agrees, saying, "I think they all have an equal chance in Pima County because they're not known and this is the perfect forum for them to address the issues, to answer questions, let us know their agendas and politics--and let the best person win."
For more information on all the candidates in the upcoming primary elections, you can log on to www.kold.com.