What Is He Thinking?

Let us first say if Councilwoman and mayoral aspirant Virgina Korte’s long-time political consultant is not involved with the “Voice of Scottsdale” blog we will stand corrected and will provide all the space he wants right here for him to correct so. But we’re not holding our breath.

Earlier today, and for the second time in a month, this person issued a broadside against highly-respected businessman Shawn Yari. It may be the first time in the history of elections that a candidate’s political consultant hammered one of her long-time, substantial campaign contributors. That’s malpractice not only for its stupidity but because Yari is a Scottsdale Hall of Famer. Remember when the Galleria was downtown’s White Elephant? After Yari’s company took it over it has become a bustling hub of technology workers. Go in there sometime. The transformation is remarkable. And whether readers like or lament the “Entertainment District” its success has been remarkably positive for the city, and the envy of every other one in the Valley.

According to a recent Scottsdale Progress article Yari has indicated an interest in “maturing” his large holdings in and around the Entertainment District. And he is going about it in an interesting way. With a totally transparent process involving many community leaders including two who have been his greatest critics in the past: Bill Crawford and Andrea Alley. This is not cause for criticism, but kudos. It speaks highly of Alley, Crawford and Yari that they can put aside past differences for potential, future good. The experiment and endeavor may fail. But talk among former adversaries is a good thing. Indeed, it was the reason Scottsdale just achieved a landmark and landslide bond election result after two decades of failure.

The Korte consultant critique, if it is that, was also as wayward as it was meritless. It was stated that anti-DDC leader Jason Alexander was hired by Yari for the Gentry on Green project?! What? Yari has nothing to do with that project that passed City Council on a compelling 7-0 last night.

If the “Voice of Scottsdale” hasn’t set itself up as an LLC it might consider doing so to limit its liability. Freedom of speech doesn’t cover falsehoods. And when it comes to ethics, something the blog questioned of Alley, we’ll take hers any day over the pygmy’s.

The relatively early stages of mayoral, and many campaigns, are about winning what is called the “inside game.” Early endorsers. Issues positioning. Financial backers. Ironically, Korte had recently been making some small gains in this regard versus Councilwoman Suzanne Klapp. She’s needed to after a major misstep hoisting herself on the DDC petard last year. Klapp’s contribution to killing a politically popular medical marijuana dispensary in downtown as well as her flirtations with deep sixing Southbridge II have given Korte new openings and opportunities.

But whatever gains Korte might have been enjoying may have just been reversed by, of all people, her own political consultant. Fortunately for her she may have recognized this consultant’s deficiencies, which is why he has apparently been downgraded for her upcoming mayoral run. Smart move. With consultants like these who needs enemies?