Press Advisory: Weisser Files in Congressional Run and Will JoinPayson Dems for Office Grand Opening
contact: mikel weisser, 928-234-5633
On the afternoon of May 29th, activist/educator/artist,now political candidate, Mikel Weisser, and his wife, Beth, joined dozens ofother first time Democratic candidates on the 7th floor of the Secretary ofState's offices at the elections dept. for photo ops and glad handing as the electionqualifying period came to its end. A long-timeprogressive writer and protester, who bills himself as the "disorganizerof the Kingman Occupy effort," Mikel Weisser had long claimed that hispolitical aspirations were an avenue to take his message to "a LargerStreet Corner." Now Weisser has completed the petition gathering processand has been approved as a candidate for Arizona's newly created CD-04district, a sprawling seven county a rural Congressional district the size ofthe state of Illinois, that Weisser jokingly refers to as "the Left Coastof AZ."
Weisser was among many freshlyminted Democratic candidates who gathered to file their petitions one day aheadof the May 30th deadline. Progressive Democratic activist, 99% Spring Traininginstructor and Democracy For America organizer, Angel Garcia worked with acrowd of progressive candidates like the Weissers to guarantee a smooth processand ballot full of Democrats. "We need a Democrat in EVERY race andcontested races whenever possible," Garcia explained. "That's how youenergize a base." Among others attending the somewhat impromptu "solidarityfiling" were Beth Weisser, filing for her second run for state senate and the Weisser's Mohave County slate mate, P.L. Durbin, who isrunning unopposed for one of the LD 05 representative slots. PHX area challengersin on the action included LD 18 state senate candidate Dr. Jane Hydrick alongwith her fellow LD 18 state house challengers, Darin Fisher and Corey Harrisand LD 20's Tonya Norwood. Additional friends and fans also crowded the lobbyof the elections office and posed for dozens upon dozens of photos commemoratingthe grand occasion of completing the qualifying process. "We began thisquest back in January and have chased it all over the state for the past fourmonths, this is a real victory for realpeople!" Weisser exclaimed.
Though Weisser had covered muchof his territory earlier in the campaign, his final petitioning campaign wasthe biggest. Part of the process of finishing strong in the qualifying seasoninvolved organizing a final petition drive that traveled across the entireCongressional District 4 in the weekend prior the filing deadline of May 30th.Illness ultimately cut the venture short, but, during the weekend, the Weissercampaign includes stops and events in Hackberry, Valle Vista, Butler-NewKingman, So-Hi, Dolan Springs, two events in Kingman, Yucca, Lake Havasu, Parker,Yuma, Gila Bend, Buckeye, Congress, Ponderosa Park, Prescott & ChinoValley. "I regret missing out on Gila & Pinal Counties, but we've alreadyscheduled events in the next couple of weeks to visit those places to make upfor it." True to his word, this weekend, Weisser will be among the Demcandidates in Payson Saturday for the grand opening of Payson's new DemocraticHeadquarters at 1101 S. Beeline Highway, from 11-2.
All and all, Weisser collectedover 700 petition signatures across the seven county area. With a total of 20different campaign stops, the trip covered more than 900 miles (929) and was a return visit to each of the counties.Eager to build a district wide base, Weisser has traveled more thantwenty-thousand miles so far in the campaign, spreading his message andcollecting petition signatures.
Though the numbers heavilyfavored Weisser's base in Mohave County, Yavapai and Yuma Counties also figuredprominently. Ironically, the most populous county in Weisser's district,Maricopa, had the smallest number of signatures. "After so long on theroad, illness struck my super number one volunteer Perry Wickerd of DolanSprings, so we curtailed the eastern leg of the campaign to get him home. Perryhas given almost every one of his weekends to the campaign since he firsthitchhiked from Dolan Springs to Kingman [about 35 miles] to catch up with meat my next event in Kingman. I've got to take care of a guy like that." WithWickerd returned safe and sound, Mikel's wife and campaign treasurer, BethWeisser--herself a candidate for state senate in LD-05-- joined him for thefinal leg of the journey, the trip to Phoenix and the seventh floor of the Secretaryof State's office on the state capitol grounds. "I had joined my wife in 2010when she filed the first time for the state senate race. The staff at the desk inelections remembered us. We all laughed and took pictures. It is such anaffirming experience. This is so much fun, everyone should try this."
While there is still one more dayfor filing, Weisser is as of yet the only declared Democratic candidate forCD-04. A native Texan and long time political writer and activist inSpringfield, IL, with a newly issued MA in literary criticism and numerouspublications, Weisser moved to AZ in 2001 to become a social studies teacher andlater earned an M Ed from NAU in 2005. In AZ, Weisser has been an outspoken activistand online political humorist based in Mohave County and organizes literary eventssuch as Kingman's annual week-long book festival, KABAM"("Kingman-Area-Books-Are-Magic!") throughout the western partof the state and around southern California. Weisser credits his experiences asa traveling performance poet/musician with helping him develop the skill setcandidacy demands. ""In both fields you have to know how to travelcheap and how to say stuff and make it sound important," Weisser smiled.Weisser's fiery speaking style and high energy presentations have been excitingcrowds around the district. "The Payson folks must've talked to the crowdover in Prescott after my last speech, because they asked me to be sure tobring my guitar. We did a sing-along to start the show out there. In Payson, Imight even pull a rabbit out of a hat," he laughs.
for more info, contact:
Mikel Weisser for US Congress
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Democracy for America:
Phone-in Talk Show Guest Appearance:
Political Humor Archive:
On My Opponent, Paul Gosar:
Tea Party Rebuttal:
Spoken Word (profile):
Spoken Word (performances)
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