Below are my typewritten notes after meeting with Governor Mecham on the third day of my three-day visit to Arizona. I cannot find pages 1 and 2. Corrected only for scanning errors.
that he was moving from his campaign and start-up staff to a long-range team. The polite, but clear, implication would be that the staff is responsible for some of his problems. It is critically important that some of the heat be deflected away from the Governor.
4. The Governor is proud of his open-door policy with the media. The problem with the door is that he has flies in his kitchen. He needs a someone with the ability and the authority to be both a screen and a fly-catcher. Because of the severity of current problems, the responsibility for media relations should be elevated within the Governor’s staff. The press secretary role should be on a par with the Governor’s other half-dozen key staff members, with a title of Special Assistant to the Governor for Public Affairs. I asked the Governor if his current press secretary was considered a policy maker on the senior staff. His response was that the press secretary is allowed to sit in on all staff meetings.
5. Governor Mecham is doing fairly well with radio and television. His problems are with the print media. His staff member responsible for media relations should have some solid experience as a newspaper reporter. I have this print media experience and I know that I could immediately begin to mend some fences for Governor Mecham.
6. At least for public consumption, the Governor must re-define his agenda. For openers, I would suggest he concentrate on relocations to Arizona of clean industries, greater emphasis on tourism, the development and commercial of an academic/research park, agricultural exports, warehousing and distribution, public transportation, and and the promotion of Phoenix as a financial center. All of the above (and more) could be developed because of the proximity to the population base in Southern California without California’s bureaucratic and activist obstructions to development.
7. What should not have as a high a priority on the Governor’s agenda (at least for the next year) are moral issues. I tried to explain to the Governor that he is currently running the risk of antagonizing the national homosexual political activists who have considerable fund-raising abilities. The financial clout of the homosexuals is a serious threat in the recall election.