Arizona Republican National Committeeman Bruce Ash recently called in to the radio show of right-wing host Jon Justice — who has been called the “Rush Limbaugh of Tucson” — to take issue with local Democratic Party chairman Jeff Rogers’ opposition to a city ballot initiative. Ash said that Rogers doesn’t understand levels of crime in the city. To show how aware he is personally, Ash recounted some of his conversations with the city’s “brown people”:
I listen to the event and I heard the argument, and what was really truly amazing to me, Jon, was the pomposity that Jeff Rogers displayed. He sits in his little house in midtown with his kids who go to school, with his little job, and his job as the Democrat county chairman, and he is blind to all of the crime that is going on in this city.
It’s maybe not happening in his little neighborhood, but you ask any of the brown people who live on the South Side, or the West Side, or the South Central side of Tuscon, and they will tell you, in no uncertain terms, the fear they have getting in their car, walking in the street, and sometimes just sitting in their house.
The Arizona blog Rum, Romanism and Rebellion gives Ash the benefit of the doubt and says it might not have been blatant racism. However, the site says that Ash’s “sudden care for ‘brown people’ on the South Side” comes off as “good old fashioned patronizing and nothing more.” Huffington Post blogger Marlene Phillips also notes that crime statistics don’t support Ash’s claim that crime is higher in the city’s Hispanic neighborhoods. (HT: AMERICAblog)