Pima County Republican Party chair Bill Beard and Pima County Democratic Party chair Cheryl Cage talk about Donald Trump’s immigration plan, Tucson’s bus strike, whether former lawmaker and Republican-turned-Democrat Tom O’Halleran can win the congressional seat that U.S. Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick is giving up to challenge Sen. John McCain and more.
Here’s a transcript of the show:
Hello, everyone. I’m Tucson Weekly senior writer Jim Nintzel, and we’re talking Zona Politics. Joining me today, the chair of the Pima County Democratic Party, Cheryl Cage, and the chair of the Pima County Republican Party, Bill Beard. Thanks to both of you guys for being here
So let’s start today, Bill, with Donald Trump released his immigration plan this last week and it is a very, it’s a tough plan. He’s talking about trying to create a self-deportation situation. Is this trouble for the Republican party?
(Bill Beard) I think Donald Trump is one of those kind of political events that come along from time to time in our history that, regardless of what you may feel about the individual, and particular thing that individual is speaking to, they’re talking to the broader language of where we are in our politics in this country If you look at where we were even just a few years ago the current occupant of the White House came in on hope and change. Well, I think for the average person that was sold on that line, they are coming up asking the question, where’s my hope and where’s my change. Someone like a Donald Trump comes along and just speaks to that average individual, regardless if they are Republican or Democrat or Independent, and he is drawing a resonance in the the American community in a way that few politicians have an opportunity to do, simply because he’s speaking in a language that the average person relates to. Again you don’t have to be a Democrat, you don’t have to be a Republican. He is speaking to the heart and soul of what a lot of people You can argue about the specifics of any detail in his positions he may have but he’s speaking to a broader audience out there, and I think that is something that folks in both political parties that do not pay attention to that will regret it come election day next year.
(Nintzel) Cheryl, what do you think about the idea that Donald Trump is the “anti-politician” of the campaign and also we’re seeing something Ben Carson is doing really well in the polling, on the Republican side — sort of the weariness with traditional politicians.