BILL JONES FOR G.O.P. NOMINEE FOR GOVERNOR by Joe Shea
by Joe Shea
American Reporter Editor-in-Chief
Los Angeles, Calif.
Most newspapers do not endorse candidates in primaries, and that would hold true most of the time at AR, too. But the race between two vastly wealthy men and Central California farmboy Bill Jones is too important for us not to take a stand. We believe Bill Jones is the best man to face Gov. Gray Davis in November, and we warmly endorse him in the March 5 primary.
Our reasons are not complicated. We believe that Jones has shown exceptional courage during his tenure as California's Secretary of State, and a recent visit to the Los Angeles field office made us a believer in his simple brand of Republican efficiency.
With the help of his staff at the windows, we were able to incorporate a California non-profit corporation in less than an hour and at a cost of just $35. The service was exceptional; the scrutiny was careful. In addition, the Secretary of State has created an extremely useful Website that takes full advantage of the promise of the Internet. That's the shape state government ought to take, we believe.
When we had real questions about the strange voting pattern in a recent election, it only took a letter and a phone call to get an investigation of the irregularities underway. When the investigation was done, we promptly received a letter explaining what was found. The whole process was simplified and straightforward, and that's not something anyone in America can usually count onfrom their state government.
Jones has had to fight off Republican special interests as well as these two well-heeled Republican opponents, so we think he is at least a little above the fray of partisan politics. It's our belief that had Gov. Davis demonstrated more courage during the energy crisis, Californians would own their power supply by now -- and still have the $10 billion budget surplus that scandalous affair stole from us and gave to Enron and its ilk. Our concern with Jones' opponents, former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan and multimillionaire investor Bill Simon, is that we don't want to encourage the practice of wealthy men (or women) buying public office. Every once in a while -- indeed, as in Riordan's case -- that can produce an able public servant, if not one as efficient as Jones.
Richard Riordan was a complicated mayor, a good man at heart whose politics were certainly liberal enough for most of us but whose ability to reach out beyond the election to people outside his circle seemed very limited.One sensed that even with a smile he never forgave a slight.
Bill Simon is just the kind of rich, good-looking and young politician that is filling the halls of the U.S. Senate.
In a lot of ways, these types seem to be sponsored by the rich for the rich; there's nothing in Simon's record that suggests a wide streak of public-spirited altruism, and we don't think one will emerge between now and Election Day -- or afterwards, if he's elected. Bill Jones grew up on a farm in the central California agricultural paradise that is the envy of the world. He has not been afraid to speak his mind, and has not kow-towed to the special interests.
We like him, and we know he will make a great Republican candidate for Governor of California on March 5.