Pat Shea and Stewart Hanson have run polite, even gentlemanly, campaigns for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination - and because of it are likely less known than other candidates in this humble-jumble political year.
But both are on television now, running ads talking about themselves and how they could run Utah's government better than the other guy - although in true nice-guy fashion they don't mention each other by name.Shea, a Rhodes Scholar and Harvard-trained lawyer, says he is pushing one main theme this last week before Tuesday's primary - "I'm the only Democrat who can win in November." Shea says Hanson is too liberal to carry the moderates, independents and "Reagan Democrats" that a minority party candidate needs to win a statewide race.
"Stewart is just unelectable. (Democrats) can't win with a pro-choice candidate who says he'll raise taxes," says Shea.
Of course, Hanson doesn't describe himself that way. "I'm working this week to convince that large bloc of undecided Democrats that I'm the candidate who can solve Utah's problems - the candidate for choice, yes, but for choice in how citizens deal with their government," Hanson says.
Shea also says he's the better candidate because he'd be the better governor. "Stewart has spent $85,000 on an out-of-state campaign consultant. If he's governor, what's he going to do? Have the consultant sitting beside him all the time? He has to make his own decisions."
Hanson, a former district judge, replies that he has, and has all along. "Yes, we have a campaign consultant. Most campaigns do.
I'm not a pro at this. And I've welcomed some good, sound advice. But I've rejected his advice as much as I've accepted it. Still, the process of making a decision - and I've made all the decisions myself - is a good one. Pat has called my consultant an out-of-state campaign manager - which is completely false."
Shea says his campaign has been building slowly. His new television spots - on which he's spending $30,000 - are aimed at reinforcing his strengths. And looking a little beyond Tuesday, the spots set the stage for the final election - where Shea guesses he'll face Republican Mike Leavitt. "The (ads) talk about how we've failed over the last decade (of GOP Gov. Norm Bangerter's administration) to deal with the problems of education, the environment, economic development. There's a better way. And it's not to continue with a Bangerter/Leavitt agenda. I know a lot about government. I'm intelligent and fair."
Hanson said the $50,000 he's spending on his TV spots will be augmented by a new radio advertisement that starts running Friday - where former Democratic Gov. Calvin Rampton endorses Hanson and says he's the best man for the job.