Jan Brewer is a lousy Governor. As Brewer positions herself as the new darling of the GOP her handlers are wishing that anti-immigrant passions will obfuscate any real analysis of her performance as an appointed head of a State. However any objective view of her performance to date indicates that Jan Brewer is the Sarah Palin of the Desert.
In an attempt to curry favor with Arizona’s’ right wing base Brewer has made her state a pariah among the young, the ethnic, and the creative class in America. This is bad news for any state that is so dependent on tourist dollars that their license plate slogan is dedicated to their largest attraction. It is also bad for any state that wants to attract new economic ventures.
Here is a litany of Brewers malfeasance: In a time of recession Brewer has decided that it is her mission to move 400,000 consumers to competing states. In a time of fiscal austerity Brewer has decided to spend public funds defending a growing list of lawsuits that while some of which she might win all will end up lessening the prosperity of the Grand Canyon State. In a short period of time Brewer has distinguished her state among the future’s largest tourist blocks as a place to avoid. As a gift that won’t stop giving the PR damage is to be suffered not only by her but also by her political party. In short Jan Brewer is the BP disaster of Arizona and like her gulf counterpart not even an iron top hat can stop the damage she is causing.
The fact that the media has failed to provide an analysis of Brewers track record indicates the intoxicating pull of anti-immigrant fervor. So far Brewer has lied about Arizona crime rates, claimed that immigrants are responsible for nonexistent beheadings, and told her state that her decision to sign SB 1070 would have no economic impact on taxpayers. The lack of scrutiny by the mainstream media on her failures so far is utterly remarkable. One must wonder if Brewer would finally receive some critical analysis if she claimed that she had invented the internet.
While many in the media may see themselves above the anti-immigrant activists that now have a stranglehold on Brewers political career the free ride the Governor is receiving indicates that the fog of suspicion cast on immigrants blinds them. Jan Brewer is no more than the offspring of Tom Tancredo and Sarah Palin. In fact her only distinction is that unlike her political parents she has a legitimate job…for now.
Governors are supposed to lead their states out of difficult times. Brewer has led her state into a prolonged difficult period. The fiscal impact on Arizona will soon be tabulated while the devastating social impact is now apparent. Leaders lead, Brewer follows. But if a politician falls in the desert and nobody reports it has it really happened
Crossposted with the author’s permission from Huffington Post.