Katie Hobbs must get out of the race for governor
Democratic gubernatorial favorite Katie Hobbs is trying to get out of a hole that is starting to look like a political grave.
On Thursday, Hobbs finally opened up about the sacking of Talonya Adams, a black woman who won her federal discrimination case last week after being fired from her post as Democratic House analyst while Hobbs was minority leader in the Bedroom.
The hole has only deepened.
Hobbs at least admitted that she played a role in the Adams sacking in 2015. It’s certainly better than last week’s statement of his campaign, blaming everything on Republicans.
But Hobbs also insisted on Thursday that there were good reasons to fire Adams that had nothing to do with race or gender. Yet two years ago she publicly apologized to Adams and lamented that she had not been a “stronger ally”.
Hobbs cites “other factors” but will not elaborate
Now she says there was a pattern of issues with Adams’ performance.
“I can say with certainty for myself that my firing decision was not based on race or gender,” she told Jeremy Duda of the Arizona Mirror. “There were other factors.”
She just does not want to tell us what these factors are, believing that she could be prosecuted since they were apparently not mentioned at trial. Oddly, she also told Duda that she didn’t want the state to appeal the jury’s verdict.
Do that, the verdict of the second jury.
Adams sued the state Senate after finding out that his salary was significantly lower than that of most of his white and male colleagues.
According to testimony in court, when Adams emailed Democratic Senate leaders and the Democratic chief of staff to discuss his concerns, Hobbs replied that his email was “inappropriate” and that his concerns had already been addressed. been taken into account.
Within weeks, Adams was fired while in Seattle, caring for her 19-year-old son during a medical emergency.
A jury sided with Talonya Adams twice
Adams won a $ 1 million jury verdict in 2019, prompting Hobbs to apologize. But the judge found Adams had failed to prove part of his claim, so a second trial was ordered.
Last week, a jury awarded Adams $ 2.75 million – $ 750,000 for wage discrimination and $ 2 million for the retaliatory dismissal after she complained.
This will likely be reversed, given the $ 300,000 cap on federal discrimination awards for an employer of this size.
But Hobbs was also bowled over by his indirect response, downplaying his role in Adams kicking to the curb.
She rightly notes that Republicans are responsible for the pay gap. The majority party sets the salary scale and has regularly stiffened Democratic staff members.
But it’s clear from testimony at trial that Hobbs was the key figure in Adams’ sacking. Hobbs said it was a “group decision” and after the verdict his campaign issued a statement saying the Republican chief of staff was the “ultimate decision maker”. But the Republican and Democratic chiefs of staff made it clear from the witness stand that this was Hobbs’ call.
This call will haunt Hobbs’ gubernatorial candidacy
It is a call that will now haunt his campaign for the post of governor.
Hobbs was on a roll. Republicans made the upcoming election a matter of “electoral integrity” and Secretary of State Hobbs became a national figure following the Maricopa County election audit.
But his clumsy response to Adams’ verdict turned what could have been a one-day story into a campaign disaster.
Already, a coalition of influential black leaders is urging Democrats to reconsider their support for Hobbs.
“We’re going to do everything we can to make sure Katie Hobbs doesn’t succeed,” said former state representative Cloves Campbell, who publishes the Arizona Informant, the only African-American-owned weekly newspaper in the world. the state.
Talonya Adams, meanwhile, offers to campaign against Hobbs and Hobbs’ two Democratic adversaries, former Nogales mayor Marco Lopez and former state representative Aaron Lieberman, saying it raises serious questions about his leadership skills.
Hobbs should give up the race
It also raises serious questions about Hobbs’ ability to win what was already going to be a general election murderer. The Democratic candidate will need minority and female voters to win.
Hobbs is shackled, but she apparently doesn’t see him.
âThis is something that happened seven years ago,â she told Duda. âThere was a trial two years ago. This is not a new problem. And I will continue to work to gain the confidence and support of the voters of Arizona.
What she should do is get out of the race.
The coming campaign for governor was always going to be a battle. Add in the slippery approval ratings of Joe Biden and a Democratic candidate who disables minority voters and we might well consider …
Governor Kari Lake?
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