Day fends off Higgins - Tucson Local Media: Pima Pinal

Day fends off Higgins

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Posted: Tuesday, September 9, 2008 11:00 pm

Republican Pima County Supervisor Ann Day (District 1) has fended off the challenge of Joe Higgins, and — without a Democratic opponent — is bound for a third term.

Unofficially, Day received 9,835 votes to Higgins’ 8,798 in last Tuesday’s primary. On a percentage basis, her edge was 52.78-47.21.

“I think local elections were caught up in the same environment as what’s going on nationally,” Day said. “It’s a tough time for incumbents, so considering the climate, it’s a good win for me.”

“We worked our tail off, and really marketed, got out to the people, had those conversations that needed to be had,” said Higgins, a Tucson businessman.

In the District 3 Democratic primary, incumbent Supervisor Sharon Bronson held a wide advantage over challenger Donna Branch-Gilby. Again in unofficial totals, Bronson defeated Branch-Gilby by 2,131 votes, 6,461-4,330. Bronson faces Republican challenger Barney Brenner on Nov. 4.

Early voters pushed Day to victory, Higgins observed. Day led the early voting totals, 6,970-5,703. Higgins won among voters on Sept. 2 by 243 votes, 2,886-2,643.

Day said the voters “know my voting record and they trust me.

“I do appreciate the voters, and I will return that trust each and every day that I’m in office,” she said. “I appreciate their support.”

“If I had more branding and name awareness coming into it, it could have been a little closer,” said Higgins, who felt stymied by the media, the party faithful and a number of entities that endorsed Day’s candidacy.

“I think it’s a bunch of little cuts,” Higgins said of the endorsements. “I can’t look at one and say ‘that’s the end all to be all.’ Everything made its difference. We could have had a chance to change some things in Pima County.”

Day said Higgins “tried to lump me in with the board majority, and he couldn’t do that. I’ve been fighting against high taxes and spending at the county, and trying to mitigate the excesses of the board majority. I agree taxes are too high. He can’t pin the sins of Pima County on me.”

“I loved the dialogue about regionalism, and hope that continues, for the future of Pima County,” Higgins said.

“I want to pass along a quality of life to the next generation,” Day said. “I’ll be working on all the important issues, from water to transportation, to building trust and building bridges on a regional basis to solve these problems. That’s what the job is all about, solving problems.”

What did Higgins learn in his first campaign?

“There is a political process in winning an election,” he said.

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