face it, the Giffords' shooting brought out both the best and the worst
in us: President Obama gave a fitting speech while pundits and
politicians fought to prove who was to blame - and not to blame. And
amidst this spectacle, we gave short shrift to some details which are
now only emerging.
all knew that Giffords' election opponent, Jesse Kelly, used gun
imagery (literally) in his campaign against Giffords. And we know that
he wasn't at all apologetic about it. We also know that know that Kelly
fully intended to keep his campaign alive after the election:
From Tucson Weekly - DEC. 28:
The GOP rumor circuit is buzzing with word that Kelly will announce his plans to run against Giffords as soon as mid-January.
And, depending on how things go at tomorrow's hearing of the Commission on Appellate Court Appointments, he may end up with a friend on the Independent Redistricting Committee.
That "friend" is one Christopher Gleason, whose ties to a right-wing religious group, Vision 360, kept him from being considered. The group "plants" churches in major metropolitan areas.
Vision360 is committed to furthering the message, the movement and the cultivation of leadership. As a church planting organization, our mission is to serve and empower a collaborative church planting community in 500 global cities by 2025. We believe through an investment in gifted leaders, we can change the spiritual trends of our country and the world.
Church planter Steve Johnson, together with Al Weiss, President, Worldwide Operations, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, felt a call by God to begin to multiply churches. Originally the goal was to start 20 churches surrounding the city of Orlando, strategically using qualified and experienced church planters.
ministry's website also spouts fundamentalist biblical values which
seem at odds with it other value statements concerning the
now-pejorative social justice*
(made so by Glenn Beck). To it's credit, however, it does not seem to
ally itself with any fundamentalist denomination like the Southern
Baptist Convention. Is it Reconstructionism in disguise? It's possible,
since support of Jesse Kelly conveys the Reconstructionist premise of
Tucson is oddly silent lately, maybe because
Brian Miller, Pima County Republican Party chair, has called on
everyone to take a break from politics for a while.. But with politics
and politicians, nothing is really quiet from lack of activity. And
while I haven't been able to find out any material on Gleason's
appointment, sources say that Tea Partiers, Vision 360 and Jesse Kelly
are busy laying the foundations of a new campaign.
course, timing is crucial, but so is the strategy of not seeming too
eager to pounce on the tragedy, especially with the poor judgment of
his last campaign. So, in a sense, Kelly's future will hinge on several
things: Vision 360's generosity and patience and the CD 8 constituents'
patience and compassion for Giffords.
As of this writing, Jesse Kelly has taken on the job of development
director of the website for Vision360 and is soon to host a new radio
talk show called Spotlight Arizona, sponsored by - Vision 360.
Freud defined the super-ego as the moralizing role of the psyche.
Behind Kelly's shoot-em up Tea Party campaign lies a super-ego that may
be a far greater driving force than the hunger for mere political
power. I wonder if we shouldn't be very watchful of Kelly's political
moves and Vision 360's as well. Remember the motto of the unhinged (but
dangerous) Repent Amarillo: "Politics Is Ministry." And we should
remember this quote from Kelly in December:
"We have unfinished business here in southern Arizona. It's time to finish what we started," the e-mail flier to top donors in Tucson, Ariz., read. "I am running for Congress again, and I am asking you to join me. Early contributions will allow us to focus for two years on unseating Gabrielle Giffords!"
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