Greg Stanton. Witness Fred Duval

Is there a Democrat in Arizona today that doesn’t embrace just about any call for a fee or tax hike to aid a pet interest?
Our television screens this week suggest Fred Duval falls right in line. While serving on the Arizona Board of Regents, the group that governs Arizona’s universities, Duval supported increasing tuition on the backs of students a whopping 99%. duval
His excuse? Legislative Republicans dealing with the Great Recession made him do it.
C’mon Fred. Even using your own math that university budgets were cut in half by the State Legislature, your tuition hikes were double this amount.
Is Duval actually suggesting spending cuts shouldn’t have been made to universities which were among the most extreme beneficiaries of former Governor Napolitano’s largesse?
And it was a REPUBLICAN Governor, Jan Brewer, who led the fight for the largest tax increase in state history to mitigate the Great Recession on state government.
No, Duval was just acting as a classic liberal in raising tuition beyond any reasonable level, beyond any cuts to higher education at a time when state government had to whittle away. And Duval will suffer for it as the political commercials continue, ultimately ending his hopes for Governor.
So what does this have to do with Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton? A lot.
As a Phoenix City Councilman and as a candidate for Mayor Stanton felt more like a Bill Clinton Democrat than a Nancy Pelosi one. Yet, since running an impressive campaign for Mayor, Stanton has towed party orthodoxy. Perhaps his aspirations fear a more difficult primary for higher office in the future if he is not an liberal adherent. After all, former Mesa Mayor Scott Smith and former Tempe Mayor Hugh Hallman showed the challenges of winning a primary having once served as Mayors, as Paul Johnson did before him.
But this makes for bad policy and relegates taxpayers as mere subjects to advance oneself in the political game.
Having already flip-flopped on the City of Phoenix food tax, he was opposed to it as a candidate before embracing it as Mayor, Stanton is now strangely quiet on charging new fees for those using City of Phoenix parks like Squaw Peak and Echo Canyon.
This is real simple Mayor. It’s a terrible idea. Just because you can tax doesn’t mean you should.
What’s next after this folly? Tolling city streets? Pay stations along Camelback Road?
Residents seek Phoenix’s impressive park system because it provides a bit of solitude in the busy city. It gives them a wonderful break from the concrete jungle. So how about giving them a break from the ever expansive Phoenix government which, under your watch, always seems to want to tax and fee everyone for everything?
Break from your inclination to tax big and spend more. Spare the hikers. Unless you too want to Be Like Fred. And enjoy similar television commercials as those now undermining the career lobbyist’s quest for higher office.