Scott Fistler, Two-Time GOP Candidate, Changes Name to Cesar Chavez to Cater to Latino Voters
Scott Fistler really wants to win.
So much so that he has taken drastic measures after twice losing as a Republican candidate. In 2012, he lost a write-in campaign against Rep. Ed Pastor. The following year he lost to Pastor's daughter, Laura Pastor, in a bid for the Phoenix city council seat.
Fistler has decided to become a Democrat and change his name to Cesar Chavez to appeal to the Hispanic voters in the 7th Congressional District.
Fistler said that he has "experienced many hardships because of my name."
The man who now goes by Chavez has been inundated with calls and emails from the press.
"There is just simply not enough Cesar Chavez to go around," he wrote in an email to the Arizona Capitol Times.
Fistler is very specific of how the media can approach him. For example, there can't be more than five questions, and questions have to be less than five words. He also won't allow questions about his name change. In November, he petitioned and paid $319 in order to change his name.
And if you think he's just stopping at cashing in on Cesar Chavez's name, you'd be wrong.
Fistler is also using images tied to Hugo Chavez for promotional images. The pictures feature people wearing Chavez shirts and signs that say, "Viva Chavez."
"I think that's really poor taste," said Mary Rose Wilcox, a Democrat also running. "My husband and I grew up under the leadership of Cesar Chavez (the labor leader), and he means so much to our community. Voters aren't going to be fooled. If he thinks he can fool them, it's a real affront to the community. He should be ashamed."
Alejandro Chavez, who is the labor leader's grandson, said that it's not the first time someone has used Cesar Chavez's name to get ahead.
"The people who do carry on his legacy shine," he said. "Those who try to ride his coattails for a political agenda, it's apparent. You just kind of have to brush it off. If we spent our time going after this sort of thing, we wouldn't have time to carry on his legacy through the Cesar Chavez Foundation, which provides real help to Latino families and farmers."