Diane Douglas and Doug Ducey: A messy split

Just before Valentine’s Day, Cupid’s arrow misses the heart and hits the jugular

Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas and Gov. Doug Ducey, both newly elected Republicans, are engaged in a public battle over education authority.

The most recent skirmish centers on Douglas’ firing of the executive director and her assistant at the 11-member state Board of Education. Ducey promptly reinstated the two women, claiming Douglas lacks the ability to remove them. Douglas, on the other hand, says she clearly has the constitutional authority.  She shot back with this 2-page letter informing Gov. Ducey she did not see his name on the ballot for state superintendent. 

“It is no surprise that his office supports retaining two liberal staff who have publicly stated they will block all efforts to repeal or change Common Core and backs the newly elected President of the Board of Education who is a charter school operator and stands to profit from the Governor’s policy of pushing through AZ Merit to lower school scores so that more students can be removed to charter schools,” Douglas stated. “I swore to uphold the Constitution and the laws of the State of Arizona with my hand upon the Bible. I take that oath very seriously and will continue to do so. I also promised the voters of the state to replace Common Core and will not falter in my best efforts to keep my promise, regardless of whether the Governor honors his campaign rhetoric to do the same,” Douglas reminded Ducey.

From the onset of his Jan. 5 inauguration, Ducey with massive budgetary woes and plenty of statewide issues on his plate, has been inappropriately focused on education matters. He recently held an education town hall which omitted Douglas but included Lisa Graham Keegan a former RINO turned Independent, who endorsed Douglas’ Democrat challenger. Keegan, a Common Core advocate, was the education policy advisor for John McCain’s failed presidential bid. Superintendent Douglas made public the fact that Gov. Ducey has refused to take calls or meet with her since his swearing-in.

Douglas was recognized as the lone conservative among the statewide top-tier of elected officials, waging a winning grassroots campaign due to her resolute opposition to the fed’s heavy handedness in promoting the increasingly unpopular Common Core. Her message resonated with voters, carrying her across the finish line with a stunning 58 to 41 Primary victory, trouncing the incumbent. In the General Election she defeated a heavily funded, leftist educrat opponent.

The conservative base of the Republican Party supported Diane Douglas. As the establishment choice, Doug Ducey had the backing and financial network of the elites. He was also the beneficiary of scattered votes in a 6-way Republican primary field. A Libertarian and Americans Elect candidate further diluted the pool.

Doug Ducey may win this battle, but will ultimately lose the war. Messing with the base is not politically astute.


21 Responses to Diane Douglas and Doug Ducey: A messy split

  1. Geoffrey Parker says:

    Ref “The conservative base of the Republican Party supported Diane Douglas.”

    Let’s be clear . . . Republicans and sufficient swing votes voted her in. Not just one faction.

    They did so, not because she was a good choice but because she was the only non-liberal choice.

    Many of us suspected was we now see, she is are arm-waving demagogue without the social or political skills for the job.

    She will eventually self-distruct.

    Do not take credit for her, or defend her or you too will be diminished and go down in flames.

    Common Core should go, so someone competent get get this job done.


    • ZOO says:

      With the installation of the new state administration there have been several ‘political substitutions’ (firings), the most notable of which was Charles Flanagan – the architect of the new Department of Child Safety. With every new slate of elected officials there are always politically-motivated personnel changes implemented by department heads.

      So Douglas’ decision to dismiss two members of her department makes her a “arm-waving demagogue without the social or political skills for the job”?

      Further, she was elected because “she was the only non-liberal choice?” Isn’t that why the entire McCain/CoC slate was elected – because their opponents in the general were all Democrats?

      While you were scratching your signature on the Douglas recall petition, many of us were preparing to ‘go down in flames’ with her to the end. Blow it out your ear.

    • Tucson GOP says:

      How wrong you are! I look for the needlessly provoking demagogue Doug McDucey to be a one-termer. He has a state to run and needs to get down to business. Diane Douglas was right in pointing out she was elected Arizona’s Superintendent of Public Instruction.

    • LEO IN TSN says:

      Kudos, a valiant Alinsky-esque attempt to ignore the truth and create dissent with loud personal attacks & name-calling, pulled out of the McGOP hat for the occasion (a la McTraitor 2010 & McSnake 2012 & McSally 2014).

      Diane Douglas got 58% of the “sufficient swing voters” and other conservatives, to gut the RINO and cross-registered dimocrats supporting your incumbent with a 41%. In my old-fashioned, non-Common Core math classes, that sums out to almost twenty (20) points of victory. Then in the general, she beat the dimocrat money, the RINO money that went to the opponent, the McDucey RINOS who worked for the dimocrat opponent, and the McGraham submarine that worked to torpedo the campaigns of Mrs. Douglas and several other conservative, patriotic Republicans. Clear enough??

      I’d say Mrs. Douglas won an overwhelming victory with an overwhelming mandate from an overwhelming majority of AZ citizens. With that mandate she has the absolute right – and duty – to appoint people around her to help her fulfill the mandate of US, the people. She gets to do this in spite of McDucey’s whining and continued efforts to thwart the will of the people, US, in his new role as globalist Emperor of AZ. McDucey holds the veto stamp now, but he cannot change the character of Mrs. Douglas nor the courage of the patriotic voters who support her and the honest state legislators who are lined up to work with her.

      Since Emperor McDucey and his globalist regime don’t like AZ and want to “transform” US, maybe they would be happier someplace else. I’m sure there are enuff moving boxes to accommodate you.

      God bless America

  2. John Liberty says:

    The McCain agenda is at work now with Ducey, and his FAILURE to use the management tools that the citizenry elected him to use.
    Reagan said it this way: “Surround yourself with the best people you can find, delegate authority, and don’t interfere as long as the policy you’ve decided upon is being carried out.”

    The public knows this and that’s why they elected Douglas.
    Now it appears that “Republican” Gov. Ducey is trying to be the CEO of government which cannot happen, should not happen, due to the Constitutional separation of powers.

    Douglas didn’t run for Governor, she ran toward the educational area for a reason … SHE KNEW … what communist Vladimir Lenin said: “Give me four years to teach the children and the seed I have sown will never be uprooted.”

    So I ask this newly elected Governor why would YOU take away her philosophy of administration within the Department of Public Instruction? It seems you are just following the words of wisdom from Ronald Reagan… “Governments tend not to solve problems, only to rearrange them.”

    And we the People … DO HAVE … a problem with that.

    • g smith says:

      We’ve got a hero in Douglas. The way Robert Graham treated her at the gathering of elected PC’s to vote on leaders in the GOP was apparent. She was the last to speak and followed McCain. They’re trying to silence her like they tried with AJ LaFaro. We’ve got to keep up the heat on the establishment and let them know we’re not going to roll over. Get on the phones and burn the lines down. The first shot has been fired.

      • azgary says:

        nothing will work other than no longer voting for rinos, even if it means some other party wins elections, losing power is the only message politicians and parties understand.

        lesser of two evils and stupid loyalty to a party that spits on us is why the state and nation is in the crapper the way it is today

    • azgary says:

      ducey is and will continue to do what his owners tell him to do, despite what those who voted for him elected him to do.

      he and the republican party do not care what voters want, they only care about what those filling their coffers with cash tell them to do.

      it will never stop as long as people keep voting “lesser of two evils”

  3. Kyle Lyles says:

    Did anyone truly believe that Ducey would be anything but a screaming RINO? This guy tells lies at a pace that would take Obama’s breath away.

    Republicans made a poor choice with Ducey, now the state will pay for it.

    Having said that, and fully supporting Diane Douglas, she very much needs to have every single communication vetted prior to sending it. I am tired of seeing tweets from her, and communications like this one having glaring spelling and grammar errors in them. She’s the Superintendent of Public Instruction for cripes sake!

    “the Superintended stated” <— even a free browser spell check catches this, no matter what word processing program was used to create it.

  4. East Valley Conservative says:

    Doug Ducey was funded and supported by the McEstablishment clique and he is repaying his debt to them in myriad ways. His bringing in liberal Lisa Graham Keegan is telling, but naming Kirk Adams as his Chief of Staff is a disgusting display of Ducey‘s ankle grabbing. Washed up Kirk Adams, who went back to hustling insurance after losing a congressional race against Matt Salmon, is by no means the best person for the job. The fact that he was endorsed by Jon Kyl, Jeff Flake and Sarah Palin speaks loud and clear. Kirk Adams headlined the host committee made up of open border stooges on behalf of bogus Republican/lifelong democrat Tony Bouie, during one of Bouie’s failed legislative races. Fast forward to Ducey’s recent appointment of Bouie as director of the Arizona State Lottery. It was not by happenstance that this preposterous appointment was made. It’s McPayback. Both Ducey and Adams are constructs of the Team McCain enterprise. Keep your eyes on the McDucey ball, folks. It will only get worse.

    • Maggie says:

      Very good politcally based points!
      Indulge me as a woman as I put on my pseudo-psychiatrist’s hat to describe Arizona’s new McGovernor.
      Doug Ducey is a typical short guy exhibiting a “Napoleon Complex,“ also known as “Short Man’s Syndrome.” It’s a personality disorder that consists of power trips and false machismo to make up for lack of height and deeply held, lifelong feelings of inferiority.


    • LD 23 PC says:

      Cathi Herrod is also a Ducey supporter. All any of these clowns have to do is say the magic words “Pro Life” and she overlooks all other liberal leanings. I’m pro-life but I also have a brain.

  5. Vince says:

    Sheriff Joe Arpaio is an extremely popular political figure in Arizona politics. His odd endorsement of the establishment’s eager-to-oblige pup Ducey, obviously swayed a lot of votes in Ducey’s direction ….which was a dreadful miscalculation.

  6. Clair Van Steenwyk says:

    When anyone picks an issue to fight for they had better be certain they’re will to go to the mat before surrendering. It seems we’re right back where we started and I do believe as many who’ve read and followed these links that the two dismissals are allowed and Ducey is out of line or maybe better said in line with Common Core and Federal take over of State Ed., this is an issue that should be settled in court if necessary but not allow the Gov. who is also an employee of all voters to dictate the rules through some appointed staffer. Please take a read; Recallers Assisted by Gov. Ducey

    As the research indicates, it appears Gov. Ducey and his staff are incorrect in their evaluation of the situation and actually should be supporting Supt. Douglas in her decisions to better operate the Dept. of Public Instruction. Douglas did exactly what the voters expected her to do when they elected her to the position. Now it appears that Ducey and the Elite GOP are attempting to assist in re-firing up the oppositions recall efforts against Supt. Douglas, as News Program had a staffer of the group on air Thursday evenings program discussing this very incident, they really don’t need the help of Ducey do they, or who’s side is he really on? You read the post and then decide for yourself just what they’re all up to, serving you and me or Sen. McCain.

    Diane Douglas has the right to fire STAFF employees: Doug Ducey plays his McCain card.

    Arizona Superintendent of Public Education Diane Douglas has the authority to fire State ‘at will employees’ as established by former Governor Jan Brewer when she signed Sweeping Personnel Reform http://hr.az.gov/PR/PDF/PressRelease.pdf It would behoove Governor McDucey to review with State Attorney General Mark BrnoCainvich and any other legal counsel he has the following as it’s quite simple

    Fired were Executive Director Christine Thompson and Deputy Director Sabrina Vazquez who are on the Arizona Department of Education payroll http://www.azed.gov/staff-directory/?sort=3.6&dir=ASC&pagenum=1 and under Douglas supervision as apparent by the organizational flow chart below. http://www.azed.gov/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/publicorgchart.pdf

    Supporting Diane Douglas’ authority to terminate “at will” employees is Arizona Revised Statute, Title 15, Chapter 2, Article 2 – 251 Powers and duties – # “4. Direct the work of all employees of the board who shall be employees of the department of education.” http://www.azleg.gov/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=%2Fars%2F15%2F00251.htm&Title=15&DocType=ARS Please review the flow chart above and the listing of Thompson and Vazquez as being on the payroll of the Arizona Department of Education here http://www.azed.gov/staff-directory/?sort=3.6&dir=ASC&pagenum=1

    Consider that the members of the Arizona State Board of Education are not compensated by the State as their names don’t appear within the Staff Directory nor on the above organization flow chart for the Arizona Department of Education.

    Note again that the names of Thompson and Vazquez do appear under Diane Douglas’ name on the Flow Chart as well as the Department payroll – they work AT Will for the Arizona Superintendent of Public Education Diane Douglas.

    Perhaps Board President Greg Miller needs some COMMON SENSE education as he does not sign Thompson’s or Vazquez’s paychecks. They may do work for the “Board” http://www.azed.gov/state-board-education/files/2015/01/official-member-list-for-2015-updated-1.20.15.pdf but they are employed by Superintendent Douglas: ARS 15-251.
    when he states the move by Douglas was unprovoked and that Thompson and Vazquez work for the board, not Douglas.
    Read more: http://www.kctv5.com/story/28087721/spat-deepens-douglas-calls-out-ducey-on-board-of-ed-firings#ixzz3Raj2axXQ

    God Bless You All; Clair Van Steenwyk
    Crossroads with Van / AZS Constitutional Conservative Coalition


  7. Braveheart says:

    Regarding Doug Ducey and his tight connection to Team McCain….. it’s always worse to be screwed over by those who ran as Republicans and portrayed themselves as conservatives than it is to have Democrats give us the same treatment. With Democrats, it’s expected. Coming form Republicans, it’s betrayal.

  8. Clair Van Steenwyk says:

    It’s the GOP Better of Two Evils Kool Aid, which is remixed every election cycle and re issued and drank willingly by most with the same old excuse for drinking it. I will add for most it’s also a good way to not have to give $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ to real Constitutional Candidates who run but can’t win due to both the Mixers and the willing Drinkers. All who read this know what I’m talking about and those who do it will hopefully change behavior in the future if they plan to defeat McCain. God Bless You; Van

  9. Virginia says:

    Growing numbers of teachers now oppose Common Core. This surprising report is from the left-of-center Huffington Post.

  10. LEO IN TSN says:

    Even dimocrats of conscience over our kids and our country are condemning and abandoning Common Core. Now it is only the hardcore Marxists and the McRINO globalists who are clinging to the rails of this sinking ship; evil plans create strange bedfellows – and these traitors certainly deserve each other, but someplace else.


    God bless America.

  11. […] in among the facts most state residents have been following and on which we have reported, is a fascinating connection that has previously been missed. In addition to Ducey bringing Common […]