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Simon, Ticket-mates Stump Votes In Modesto

In what appears to be a last disparate attempt to garner support, Republican nominee for governor Bill Simon and his Republican ticket-mates are making one last push for votes this weekend and to block a potential Democratic sweep on Election Day.

Saturday’s statewide plane trip brought him and other GOP hopefuls to Modesto Saturday evening urging voters to go to the polls Tuesday.

Rally organizers say Simon’s Modesto airport stop had the largest supporter turnout of yesterday´s six-stop “Fire Davis Tour” campaign trip.

Standing on the tarmac, more than 300 Simon supporters waved blue “Simon for Governor” placards and red and white “Dump Davis” bumper stickers as the group of candidates arrived by chartered jetliner for a 30 minute layover before heading to Fresno Saturday night.

“We are the Golden State. We just don´t have leadership that befits a golden state,” Simon told the crowd. “That’s why we need to elect the people up here on the platform with me.”

Among other GOP ticket-mates, joining Simon was Lieutenant Governor candidate Bruce McPherson and 18th Congressional District candidate Dick Monteith.

Monteith was confident. “I feel very good. It´s not over until it´s over, but I will be in Washington, D.C. next year.”

Simon’s entourage also hit stops in Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Monterey, San Jose and Fresno Saturday. His “Fire Davis Tour” is scheduled to continue by bus today.

Simon unleashed a final attack ad targeting Governor Davis´ fund-raising practices. It was part of his effort keep the focus on the Democratic governor’s ethics in the campaign’s waning hours.

Simon said if re-elected, Davis is not going to be focused on the people of California, “but his next office, the presidency of the United States.

Simon lags Davis in polls by 7 to 10 percentage points, and Democrats lead in all the down-ballot races.

That raises the prospect of a Democratic sweep of statewide offices for the first time in recorded state history.

Already the Democrats outnumber Republicans 45 to 35 percent and control both houses of the Legislature.

Worried about the possibility of another setback, Simon told supporters in Santa Barbara “we can win this on Tuesday if we get the people out.”

He predicts this election is “going to come down to one or two percentage points, just as it did for President Bush.”