Governor's woes not affecting duties

An Arizona Daily Star columnist pointed out that Gov. Fife Symington hasn't been spending too much on clothing lately. It makes sense ... after all, he's already had quite a trip to the cleaners. How can you expect the guy to go shopping for trousers when he's got millions of dollars of debt hanging over his head?

A recent poll for the Arizona Republic and The Phoenix Gazette newspapers showed some disappointing results in Arizonans' faith in our governor, and it doesn't seem like good old Fife can win 'em over with his endearing smile this time. About a quarter of those polled said that he should take a hike. Twice as many people said that they wouldn't vote for Symington again as those who said they would. But are feelings like these warranted? I think not.

Would a stockbroker get the ax if her private stocks failed? Would a teller get canned if his accounts were overdrawn? Of course not. What people do concerning their personal affairs is just that personal. I don't condemn Symington for his failure and neither should anyone else. We all make mistakes and those who live in glass houses ....

Forty-two percent of those polled said that their confidence in Symington has been shaken. But why? Governor Symington has done nothing to embarrass the state, like calling someone a pickaninny. He hasn't misappropriated funds. He hasn't done one thing, as far as our state government is concerned, that deserves our confidence to get all shook up. Yet, there are a heck of a lot of folks out there who are ready to send the lynch mob after him. I think it's a little premature to be finding the tallest tree, though.

Actually, Governor Symington has been doing some good things lately. He has not let his personal problems interfere with his duty to attend to matters of the state. Recently, he has endeavored to aid those who need lung and heart transplants. He has attacked the Endangered Species Act for rights violations. He has even revived his promise to reduce state income tax, if not try to get rid of it altogether. For a guy who people say isn't dependable anymore, he seems to be pretty busy with matters of the state.

Oh sure, you might say that his recent actions are solely an effort to secure the confidences of Arizonans. But I don't think so. Symington is simply doing his job to protect our interests. Gee, isn't that what we hired him for? Call me crazy, but I don't think that he's really done anything to merit our distrust of him. Let's put away our nooses for just a moment and consider this, shall we?

Before Symington gets the chair kicked out from under him, I want to see some evidence that we shouldn't trust him. I want to see him taking tax money and going off with some lovely Penthouse Pet on an all-expense paid trip to St. Thomas. I want to watch him jump up in the middle of a meeting with President Clinton, tear at his lovely blonde locks, and yell, "I just can't take it anymore! I was the second gunman on the grassy knoll!" Until Symington really does something to make me doubt his abilities to lead our state, I'm still going to believe in him.

C'mon guys, he's not so bad is he? Symington is just an average Joe who's down on his luck. Let's rephrase that. He's just an average tycoon whose multi-million dollar venture went the way of the dodo. But have a heart, boys and girls, and please take that down that cross. Our great, guileless governor doesn't need to be crucified. After all, we're innocent until proven guilty, aren't we?

Denise R. Frank is an English senior who thinks that evil doth not lurk behind Fife's cerulean eyes. Her column appears every other Friday.

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