Aren’t the Republicans supposed to be against identity politics? A core conservative belief is that we shouldn’t worry about our government “looking like America,” with its various genders and ethnic groups, but that we should instead choose our leaders based solely on merit (i.e., whiteness, maleness, heterosexuality, former-lobbyist-ness). But one GOP consultant in Arizona has gone rogue and recruited one terribly underrepresented group into his state’s political life: the neglected but wise hobo! Unfortunately, due to Ben Quayle’s unexpected stranglehold on the Arizona Republican Party, this hobo-advocate had no choice but to put these brave bums on the Green Party line, and if that causes a Democrat or four to lose in November, well, isn’t that a small price to pay, for diversity?
Here are the representatives of the new generation of leadership that will soon be turning Arizona into one vast hobo camp:
- Benjamin Pearcy, 20, is running for the Arizona Corporation Commission, which oversees public utilities, railroad safety, and securities regulation. Who better to regulate the railroads than someone who rides the rails from town to town? “Dressed up spiffily, he described himself as the illegitimate son of a stripper who had had run-ins with the law and a tough childhood but who had pulled his life together. ‘I’ve been homeless,’ he said, his eyes darting back and forth. ‘I got a place. Anyone can do it. We’re all good enough.'”
- “Thomas Meadows, 27, a tarot card reader with less than a dollar to his name who is running for state treasurer…is known for his purple and green jester hat. ‘This is not the land of the free,’ he told the loungers on the sidewalk, pitching himself for treasurer. ‘It’s the land of what’s for sale.”
- “Anthony Goshorn, 53, a candidate for the State Senate whose bushy white beard and paternal manner have earned him that nickname [‘Grandpa’] on the streets … Grandpa, widely known in the area through the pedicab he drives for hire, is against higher taxes and for God in the classroom. The other night, he was supposed to debate his Democratic and Republican rivals in the race but after seeing only the Democrat on stage, he decided to watch from the back. ‘I got a bad vibe,’ he said.”
Wait, why isn’t “Grandpa” just running as a Republican again? Oh, right, because these people are all frauds hired by Republican operative Steve May to siphon votes away from the Democrats, who are so pathetic that people will vote for hobos instead of them.
At least May respects hobo power. “Even if I wanted to control these guys, they’re uncontrollable,” he says. THAT’S RIGHT, STEVE. YOU CANNOT CONTROL THE HOBOS. Hope you like eating beans warmed over a trash fire, because that will be Arizona’s only legal foodstuff come 2011. [NYT]