Sniff, sniff: DiCiccio’s “broad level of support” has an aroma

Fundraising is the name of any political game and the ostensibly benign Phoenix City Council is no exception. Scott Wong, whose reporting assignment is City Hall provides a glimpse into the donors lining up behind District 6 Councilman Sal DiCiccio. The former councilman who was appointed in February to fill a vacancy, has amassed $152,561 between January 1 and June 30, according to the latest campaign finance reports. And he was still flush with $127,058 on hand.

The interesting tidbit is who is contributing to this sometime Republican and onetime McCain aide. Wong writes that much of DiCiccio’s haul came from the business and development community. In some cases, executives who have or recently had projects before the city have given money to DiCiccio. Developer Steve Ellman and at least five other executives at the Ellman Cos. each donated the maximum $410 to DiCiccio’s campaign. Ellman plans to build a luxury condominium project in the district, but is facing resistance from neighborhood groups concerned with the height of the project in the toney Biltmore area.

Three executives with Pyramid Hotel Group, including CEO Rick Kelleher, also donated to DiCiccio’s campaign. The Boston-based firm is a part owner of the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, which has been battling with residents over its $600 million expansion and renovation plan. The council unanimously approved the project this month after DiCiccio worked out a deal between the resort and neighbors.

His list of campaign contributors is rife with Democrat insiders, among  them Jeanine L’Ecuyer, former spokeswoman for Gov. Janet Napolitano and Barry Dill a former Napolitano adviser and strategist. Arizona Cardinals General Manager Rod Graves; former Phoenix Suns owner Jerry Colangelo; and land-use attorney Grady Gammage Jr. are also supporters.

“It just shows I have broad level of support from the community,” DiCiccio said.

Councilman DiCiccio credits his teacher and mentor, Democrat U.S. Rep. Harry Mitchell, who required his students to attend Tempe City Council meetings, with originally planting the seeds of interest in the job.

5 Responses to Sniff, sniff: DiCiccio’s “broad level of support” has an aroma

  1. Realist says:

    I have known Sal since he worked on Pete Dunn’s GOP senate campaign some 20 years ago. He is and has always been an establishment Republican. Sal (as I believe him to be) is a man of integrity and unless I am totally off base, as honest as the day is long. When I spoke with Sal after his appointment to the council, he told me he would do what he felt would be necessary for Phoenix to survive in these difficult times. Like it or not, that’s what he’s doing. I am a fiscal/social conservative and believe Harry Mitchell is a disgrace and a total fraud, however, I feel certain Sal does not share Mitchell’s political views. Therefore, I will support DiCiccio in his bid to retain his council seat.

  2. Frankly Speaking says:

    Realist:
    Your personal experiences notwithstanding, Sal DiCiccio is an accomplished chameleon. He will be whatever suits his purposes at any given moment. Pete Dunn aside, DiConcini is obviously much more comfortable with Democrats than Republicans, along with the big business interests that will oil his campaign wheels and guarantee him a continuation of his council seat.

    Your realism seems to stop at the door mat. Go on inside and take a more updated look around. Pete Dunn’s race was close to 30 years ago.

  3. Kate says:

    Hmmm….it not only smells, I think I detect smoke. Could the “Father of Lies” be in the house?
    Oh, yes, silly me, we’re discussing a politician, obviously, and not a patriot!

  4. Jason says:

    Whoa…it’s McCain lurking in the background again. I should’a known….

  5. Zelph says:

    Sal is the best candidate real estate developer money can buy. And he is bipartisan! He’ll take money from both Democrat and Republican real estate developers.