On the Campaign Trail

Voters Meet the Candidate

Sam Goddard faced several obstacles in his campaign for governor of Arizona. Born in Missouri, Goddard was not native to Arizona and had gone to school in the east at Harvard; these qualities threatened to handicap him in the gubernatorial race. However, Goddard chose to make his non-native status as a positive in his campaigns. When he was questioned about his status as a 'foreigner', Goddard would reply, "I'm an Arizonan by choice, not by chance." When he entered the race for governor, Goddard was well known in the southern region of Arizona, but he had to travel constantly in order to introduce himself to the rest of Arizona. On occasion, he applied his skills as a pilot to fly around the state during his campaigns.

Campaigns became a family affair as Goddard's wife Judy and his children often traveled with him. Goddard's oldest son, Terry, served as a personal assistant during the campaigns when he was not in school. In 1968, Goddard's youngest son, Bill, was pictured in the local newspapers, helping to deliver petitions witha record number of signatures to the secretary of state for Goddard's last campaign in 1968.

Goddard met with numerous groups and received correspondence with many Arizonans during his four campaigns. Correspondence files from the Samuel P. Goddard collection reveal a wide array of letters, including best wishes from fellow state governors and children. Goddard replied to them all, including one letter that mistakenly congratulated Goddard when he lost re-election in 1966. Goddard's dedication to getting to know the people of Arizona and letting them know him paid off in 1964 when Goddard was the first candidate from Tucson to be elected governor in 40 years.

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