Sorry, Gary Kiehne, no one was paying attention to the text of your latest mailer.

Touting yourself as a conservative outsider who is ready to fix Washington works on the campaign trail in Congressional District 1. But your latest mailer left many political insiders wondering if your campaign lacked the experience to use photo-editing software.

Just to the right of the rancher’s black hat is a well-endowed stallion. The ad “went viral,” as they say. But the outpouring of political commentary was on the horse’s qualifications, not on the candidate’s, giving the CD1 Republican plenty of attention, but for all the wrong reasons.

Commenters on said the mailer leaves the Kiehne campaign with a dubious new slogan with less than two weeks before the Republican primary. Unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately for Kiehne, it’s something good taste precludes us from repeating.

The NRCC gets into the news business

There is a new player in the news game.

The National Republican Congressional Committee has set up its own election news website, bypassing journalists, bloggers and even partisans to get their message out to voters.

A new website set up by the NRCC — — gets readers primarily through targeted ads on Google but is relatively short on news.

Rep. Ron Barber is one of a handful of Democrats targeted by the GOP site, with a total of three articles.

Two articles on the site about Barber are both just four paragraphs long, and a third repurposes a portion of an Arizona Daily Star news article from early May.

The writer, identified as “Geoff,” handpicks portions of the Star’s article, which was primarily based on complaints from the Republican campaign fund that the Tucson Democrat was a hypocrite when it came to equal pay for women.

While the website has since been updated, a columnist with noted that the NRCC might have missed the mark in their “Tuscon update” if they were trying to convince readers they were from the Old Pueblo.

Since they’re borrowing our stories, Political Notebook is considering giving them access to our stylebook too — at least the portion on the spelling of “Tucson.”

Saucedo Mercer: Obama is an “Islamist”

Republican Congressional District 3 candidate Gabriela Saucedo Mercer took to Facebook on Friday to approve of former Florida Rep. Allen West’s calls to impeach President Obama for being an “Islamist.”

In her post, the CD3 candidate called West a “patriot” for releasing his six-point argument on why Obama is an “enemy of the state.”

Saucedo Mercer called on the “derelict media” to pay closer attention to West’s message.

Contact reporter Joe Ferguson at or 573-4346. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFerguson.


Reporter with the Arizona Daily Star. I cover politics as well as the city of Tucson and other municipalities in Southern Arizona.