On September 11th, 2007, Salt Lake voters will go to the polls to take the first step towards choosing a mayor as well as three members of the Salt Lake City Council. The September 11th election is a primary election, in which the field of candidates for each office will be whittled down to the top two finishers, from which Salt Lake voters will further choose during the general election on November 6th.
Click HERE for a list of ALL candidates.
Understandably, the media and most pol-watchers have been focused primarily on the higher-profile mayors' race, consisting of a total of nine candidates, four of who have emerged as serious contenders. Even this blog has likewise directed initial attention on the mayoral sweepstakes, outing the flagrantly pro-gay agenda of three of the four serious contenders (only Dave Buhler has refrained from pandering to the homosexual lobby). As a result, the city council races have received little media attention.
However, the District 4 city council race, which includes incumbent Nancy Saxton, Brian Doughty, Luke Garrott, and Carol Goode, sparked some interest when Jack Gray (pictured above left) declared his candidacy. That's because Gray's politics are significantly different than the general slate of "me-too" clones who customarily run for office nowadays. First, Gray is a member of the American National Socialist Workers Party (ANSWP), an organization formed by its Commander, Bill White, after White bolted the National Socialist Movement (NSM) in disgust in mid-2006 after revelations that the NSM leadership had been compromised by Satanists and child molesters (since that time, NSM Commander Jeff Schoep instituted some nominal reforms, but the presence of the unstable looney-tune Jim Ramm not only continues to be an embarrassment to the NSM, but could also hinder the political aspirations of NSM Presidential candidate John Taylor Bowles).
And Gray's political candidacy combined with his activism quickly attracted the notice of Bill White, who rewarded his initiative and efforts by designating him the leader of the ANSWP's Utah State Unit. Since that time, Gray continued to build awareness of the ANSWP and his own candidacy through literature distribution and a series of letters written to various public officials, including Senator Orrin Hatch, encouraging them to pursue immigration reform more vigorously. Indeed, it appeared the Jack Gray was intending to make immigration a major cornerstone of his campaign, pledging to use his influence to remove all illegals from Salt Lake if elected. And Gray was making steady progress - until a couple of days ago.
The first sign of trouble occurred when he suddenly deleted most of the posts on his campaign blog, replacing them with a post where he talked about a "Blogger bug" and referenced an Internet virus check. The official Utah ANSWP website was unaffected, though. Then yesterday (August 25th), I discovered that not only has his campaign blog been now completely taken down, but the Utah ANSWP website has been abandoned. No explanation for these actions has been forthcoming, not even on Gray's surviving blog, which is only sporadically updated. This issue hasn't even surfaced on the ANSWP's Yahoo Discussion Group. This leads me to wonder if Jack Gray is merely intending to disassociate himself from the ANSWP, or if he intends to go so far as to abandon his candidacy altogether. I restrict the choice to these two alternatives because why else would someone take down their own campaign blog AND their party's state website in the middle of a campaign?
Update: August 27th 3:18 A.M. MDT - The Utah ANSWP website appears to have been resurrected, and a new campaign blog is being constructed.
It's also possible that Jack Gray is an unintended casualty in the guerrilla cyberwar being waged by Jim Ramm against Bill White. The NSM reacted badly to White's departure from the organization last summer, and while NSM Commander Jeff Schoep maintains a public posture of "disinvolvement", it is quite possible that he has commissioned Ramm to do his "wet work" behind the scenes. Supporting this premise is the emergence of a spoof blog called "Bill White Watch", in which the editor, identified as a "Mr. Schultz", has waged an endless smear and defamation campaign against White. To create the illusion of popularity, this "Mr. Schultz" posts numerous "comments" under different names to each post. It is widely believed within the movement that "Mr. Schultz" is actually Jim Ramm. It has even been speculated that this "Mr. Schultz" may have tried to plant a virus on Gray's campaign blog, although no direct evidence of this has yet surfaced.
However, with the demise of Jack Gray's campaign blog, the Salt Lake voter no longer has a source of information about Gray's background and political history. Until I learn otherwise, I am assuming he is still in the race. Fortunately, the editor of the White Reference blog published a profile of Jack Gray back in March 2007. To fill the information gap, I will replicate a portion of that post here, further edited for currency:
Here is some background information on Jack Gray, courtesy of the Utahamicus Blog. Gray grew up in an activist family in West Valley City, Utah. His family was always politically aware, and he frequently volunteered for various political campaigns, with the intent of running for office at some point in the future. He served in the military for three years, which included 18 months in Germany. Gray also holds a Political Science degree from the University of Utah and considers himself a First Amendment activist.
The earliest record of political activity on Gray's part that I could find was back in 2001, when the Utah Chronicle published his letter to the editor in which he discloses his efforts to contribute to the political diversity of the local community by distributing Creativity and National Alliance literature. He served as the Utah contact for the World Church of the Creator (WCOTC), hosting a visit by its leader, Matt Hale, in June 2001, and also associated with the National Socialist White People's Party. The Anti-Defamation League also disclosed that Gray attempted to organize pro-white rallies at the Salt Lake Winter Olympics.
In 2003, while working as a full-time night custodian at the HPER West building, Gray launched his first try for elective office, running for the District 4 seat on the Salt Lake City Council. Gray cited his efforts at helping Rocky Anderson get elected mayor of Salt Lake as part of his experience portfolio, and pledged to use his influence to help college graduates find jobs. In response to a 2003 Deseret News candidate questionnaire, he pledged to combat crime by funding and hiring more police officers, to encourage more home ownership by promoting HUD programs designed to encourage it and finding ways to lower interest rates, and to revitalize downtown by supporting the mixed-use development scheme at The Gateway, a "New Urbanist"-style community several blocks west of downtown which sprung up around the old Union Pacific train station. He finished fourth in a field of four with 180 votes, or 7.23% of the total. A Utah Daily Chronicle article provides more details.
In 2006, Gray launched a second attempt at elective office, this time running for the District 25 Seat of the Utah House of Representatives. He chose to run as a Democrat. He expressed considerable interest in environmental issues. He wanted to enact legislation designed to regulate mercury content and lower pollution levels in the Great Salt Lake, as well as improve air quality by seeking ways to reduce pollution. Because of its "bowl" shape, the Salt Lake Valley is subject to periodic smog outbreaks during the winter when inversions set up, trapping colder, polluted air in the lower levels of the atmosphere. Gray also wanted to increase funding for the Division of Air Quality to re-establish monitors which had been closed as a result of previous budget cuts, and for open spaces which are part of the LeRay McAllister Open Space Fund. However, this agenda evidently did not impress voters, and public revelations of his positions on race greased the skids for his loss in the primary election to Christine Johnson, who ultimately prevailed in the general election.
Nonetheless, District 4 voters must prepare for the unpleasant possibility that Jack Gray may be out of the campaign. So this means we must consider an alternative. Who amongst the remaining candidates would be the best (or, more precisely, the LEAST destructive) alternative?
Since so many mayoral candidates have climbed into bed with the homosexual lobby, perhaps we should use that as a basic litmus test:
Nancy Saxton: Definitely likes queers. On March 7th, 2007, after voting in favor of Salt Lake's nondiscrimination ordinance, Saxton stated "Sometimes it's just going to take some time for people to come along. It behooves us as leaders in our community to give them special protection when it's not explicit in our consitutional rights". Yep - special protection equals SPECIAL rights.
Luke Garrott: Probably likes queers, too. His parents were not only public schoolteachers but union members, also. Double whammy! The NEA is to education what pedophiles are to day care.
Carol Goode: Don't know if she likes queers; she won't even take the time to get a free blog on Blogger and tell us. Scratch her.
Brian Doughty: Probably likes queers somewhat, since he's a confessed social liberal. However, he's also a fiscal conservative. What this combination means is that he's probably willing to subsidize queers with YOUR tax dollars, but won't charge you as much as the other candidates. This makes Brian Doughty the LEAST destructive alternate and the backup choice on September 11th should Jack Gray formally withdraw from the campaign.
You can also visit The Crow's Nest blog for a more comprehensive outlook on the District 4 candidates from someone who actually lives in the district and who has previously worked in political campaigns.