Much has been made by "left-leaning" commentators, notably Thomas Frank, about the disaster created in Kansas by Gov. Sam Brownback's enactment of conservative policies. And yet check out this chart:
Not to diminish "What's the Matter With Kansas," but Arizona is in worse shape. It arguably offers the better example of what happens when orthodox right-wing policies are enacted in a state without the oil and massive federal investments enjoyed by Texas. That Arizona is a growing, highly urbanized state brings into even starker relief the complete bankruptcy of the Kookocracy's "conservative ideas."
And they own this mess. The interregnum of St. Janet saw a constitutionally weak governor playing defense and never tacking the sacred cows of land use, revenue or water. Arizona's ongoing woes are the work of the regressive right that has taken over the Republican Party.
And yet, polls show at best a dead heat between Democratic gubernatorial candidate Fred DuVal — in every way the superior contender — and Republican Doug Ducey. And no chance for Democrats to gain control of the truly powerful branch of government, the state Legislature.