Eisenhower Was Right—Arizona Is in Trouble

Eisenhower Was Right—Arizona Is in Trouble

The shadow of then-Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake is cast onto the Arizona state flag as she speaks during a get-out-the-vote campaign rally in Prescott, Ariz., on Nov. 7, 2022. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Douglas Eckenrod

Douglas Eckenrod


Updated: 12/21/2023

I was born in October 1968 in an Army hospital at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri. My father had just completed the Army Officer Candidate School and was preparing for likely deployment to Vietnam as an infantry officer.
I mention this because I have long had reason to be interested in all things associated with the Vietnam conflict, including the reasoning for our nation’s significant investment in money, material, and most importantly, blood to stop the spread of communism.
One of the principal drivers of our nation’s position on communist expansion in Southeast Asia was President Dwight D. Eisenhower. In 1954, he gave a speech that was the first to reference the “Domino Theory.” The Domino Theory postulated that one of the core tenets of communism was world expansion, and that any nation that borders a communist state would be undermined, attacked, and ultimately find itself succumbing to communist control.
Without China’s direct intervention and support of Ho Chi Minh and North Vietnam, it’s likely that much of Southeast Asia would have stayed communist-free. After the French debacle at Dien Bien Phu in 1954, U.S. foreign policy began the long walk toward physical involvement in Vietnam.
Right now, you’re asking, “What the heck does this have to do with Arizona?”
Let me tell you. As a political refugee who spent his entire adult life supporting and defending the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the state of California, watching the extreme violent left throw away the sacrifices and achievements of the past, I can tell you that their leadership is actively exporting a new variant of Marxism to its neighboring states. California’s leadership is behaving like a nation-state, and it has begun to undermine the sovereignty of its neighbor by providing aid, comfort, and tangible monetary support for a growing but vocal minority of leftists in Arizona’s capital.
The leftist special operations in Phoenix have created a stronghold for California to export and expand the “California variant” of neo-Marxism deeper into the nation. Look at where the majority of monetary donations came from for Katie Hobbs’s gubernatorial campaign. According to Ms. Hobbs’s own campaign finance report, the campaign received more money from out of state than from within. Quite a bizarre fact, unless you look at Arizona as being the next defense line against California’s political influence. The governor of California supported Ms. Hobbs, California Democratic PACs funneled money directly to Arizona PACs supporting Ms. Hobbs, and everyone’s favorite Bond villain—the Soros family—donated directly to the campaign.
Combine the influx of non-Arizona funds with the sudden uptick of ballot problems in Maricopa County, close your eyes, and you get a new Arizona Territorial Governor. Why do I say, “Territorial Governor"? Because Ms. Hobbs reports to her real boss in Sacramento, California, and not to the people of Arizona. Ms. Hobbs has adopted the California method of using grant funds to silence potential detractors.
Here’s the scheme: Target potential critics of woke policies in law enforcement and the educational system by exploiting every bureaucrat’s Achilles’ heel, which is their budgetary problems resulting from the never-ending desire to expand their empire. That’s how California Democrats turned Republicans into neutered RINOs—they bought them with taxpayer funds.
Yes, leftist Democrats went all in to defeat Kari Lake. Their plan to wield influence depended on a governor whom they could control. Ms. Lake represents a resurgence in law and order, transparency, and a border. Ms. Lake’s border plan was comprehensive and grounded in the idea that you stop crime at the border, not thousands of miles inside the nation. Fentanyl and human trafficking across Arizona and California represent the lion’s share of illicit for-profit border activity, and the left has their fingerprints on this very fragile power block. Remember, Arizona is only one successful ballot count away from bringing folks back into the governor’s office who take their commitment to the Constitution seriously.
In the tradition of President Joe Biden and California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Ms. Hobbs immediately disintegrated the border strike force and moved its $17 million funding stream directly to woke educational investments. Step two was the creation of a $41 million human trafficking grant pool. The money is ostensibly earmarked to support local law enforcement agencies across the state in efforts to tackle challenges driven by the “border crisis.”
The reality is that many county law enforcement agencies have found themselves behind the budgetary eight ball because of mismanagement of their existing budgets. This is exactly the play that Gov. Jerry Brown and Mr. Newsom ran in California as they peppered the state with misleading anti-law-and-order bills. They subsidized California sheriffs into silence in exchange for millions of dollars of grant money. Their silence was interpreted as support by the general public.
There are 15 county sheriffs in the state of Arizona, and all belong to the Arizona Sheriff’s Association. This body is our last line of defense in getting the truth out about the cut-and-paste practices of the Hobbs administration. They need to prepare their agencies to be “sanction-proof” if they want to be able to speak the truth to those in Washington and Phoenix. Acceptance of federal and state funds in exchange for a conciliatory, or even supportive tone, could mean that Arizona is the next domino to fall.
Douglas Eckenrod

Douglas Eckenrod


Douglas Eckenrod is the retired deputy director for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Division of Adult Parole Operations. He has dedicated his career to improving the effectiveness of California’s criminal justice system and the safety of those who work in it. In retirement, Eckenrod shares his expertise and experience with policy and lawmakers in efforts support improvements to public safety. Over his 21-year law-enforcement career, he has worked in, supervised, and managed California State Parole’s Sex Offender, Gang, and Fugitive operations. He was also chair of the State’s Weapons and Safety Committee, managed Peace Officer Academy Operations, and oversaw Parole operations for the entire State of California. Eckenrod is a graduate of the Los Angeles Police Departments Leadership Academy.

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