On Tuesday, Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction John Huppenthal lost in the primary election. This defeat came after Huppenthal admitted to making offensive comments on blogs under a pseudonym saying that welfare recipients were “lazy pigs,” compared the work of Planned Parenthood to the Nazis, and saying that Spanish language media should be shut down.
A few years ago, Huppenthal also pushed the ban on Mexican American studies being taught in Arizona public schools asserting that it promoted resentment towards other groups. This ban was a point of contention with the growing Latino population in the state, who felt like they were being attacked by policymakers in the state.
According to Fernanda Echavarri of Arizona Public Media:
“Superintendent of Public Instruction John Huppenthal lost the Republican nomination to Peoria school board member Diane Douglas in Tuesday’s primary.
Douglas took the win with nearly 58 percent of the votes. Huppenthal, who was seeking a second term as schools chief, had about 42 percent.
Huppenthal argued controversy over blog posts he authored under a pseudonym, which many referred to as offensive and racist, did not affect his race.
“The opposition to Common Core on the campaign trail was 100 percent…swamped all other issues,” he said.
In the Democratic race, Arizona State University Professor David Garcia won with a support of 53 percent. Opposer Sharon Thomas had about 46 percent of votes.”
Huppenthal’s loss is symbolic because it shows that even in a state like Arizona where laws like the anti-immigrant SB 1070 have been promoted in recent years, voters have a hard time tolerating pettiness. This GOP race between Huppenthal and Douglas also focused on Common Core with Douglas was vociferously against the education standards initiative.
Photo credit: Superintendent John Huppenthal’s Facebook