Hi there, Kellie Hwang filling in for Megan Finnerty with a special event recap.
Thursday evening, Old Town Scottsdale’s Revolver Lounge was wall-to-wall with sharply dressed young politicos sipping on stiff martinis, chatting over the sound of pulsating dance beats.
In the upscale honkey-tonk better know for hosting Rihanna and Amar’e Stoudemire, Governor Jan Brewer was the VIP.
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Politics on the Rocks, a networking organization for republican and conservative professionals, booked the club from 6 to 8 p.m. to host a meet-and-greet with Arizona’s embattled governor, drawing more than 350 people.
Scottsdale’s Charles A. Jensen, 33, started the organization in 2007, hosting monthly happy hours with prominent politicians and business people. Brewer has been his biggest get yet.
The governor, dressed in a white blazer dotted with fall leaves, over a maroon top and white pants, made her way to the cleared-off VIP platform a little after 7 p.m. She never appeared to be holding a drink.
“When I heard we were going to Revolver Lounge, I for sure thought it was a fundraiser for Pamela Gorman, so I had my camouflage pantsuit all ready,” she joked. “But then I found out it was a Politics on the Rocks event!”
(Gorman, a former republican state senator running for Congress, has a commercial in which she shoots several kinds of guns, demonstrating her skill as a marksmanship.)
The crowd, most still wearing work-fresh suits and knee-length skirts, cheered, encouraging one audience member to scream: “We love you Jan!” rock star-style. Brewer rallied the crowd, cracking jokes about Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and President Barack Obama, and thanking supporters of SB 1070.
“Honestly, I think I can say we have the nation’s attention, don’t we?”
Brewer made one gaffe in her five-minute speech. When talking about the President’s invite to the White House, Brewer said the distance was 300 miles to Washington, D.C., prompting audience members to quickly correct her.
“What did I say? Oh, 3,000! I knew that!” she said.
While musicians such as Kanye West and Rage Against the Machine are voicing their protest for SB 1070 by boycotting the state, film director and stunt coordinator B.J. Davis, who was at the event, said he’s invited Brewer to meet with Hollywood elite, including director Jerry Bruckheimer and actor Jon Voight, to discuss the law.
Miss Arizona 2009 Vanessa Valero, 21, of Scottsdale, wore her tiara and sash, and a floral dress.
“I think it’s amazing that they are reaching out to the younger generation more with this group for young professionals, and Governor Brewer’s speech was so great,” she said.
Organizer Jensen, flanked by media and supporters in front of the club, said he was delighted by the turnout.
“These events are meant to be fun and hip, and we want to show everyone that younger people are really involved in these important issues,” he said.