In the late 80's he was involved with uncovering Charles Keating's use of campaign contributions to five senators-including John McCain, whom Dougherty would most likely face in an election-in exchange for putting pressure on banking regulators. He also investigated Governor Fife Symington, polygamist leader Warren Jeffs and Sherrif Joe Arpaio.
Whatever else he has done in the past, Dougherty has already succesfully morphed into a politician, writing a blog for the Huffington Post on illegal immigration and its relationship to crime that directly contradicts the conclusions he reached in an article he wrote for the High County News.
Dougherty told Jilted Journalists that, if elected, he would hire investigative reporters as his staff to investigate other politicians and that he "can't wait to hold hearings at the US Senate." He also said that he shares much of the Tea Party's frustration with government, although "‘Government is not the problem, corrupt government is the problem,' he said, blaming lobbyist spending for putting corporations and special interests ahead of people. Government needs to be ‘much more aggressive,' ‘strong,' and ‘tough,' he said."
If elected, Dougherty would join a long line of journalists who sought public office: Senators Harry F. Byrd (both Senior and Junior), President Warren Harding, Clare Boothe Luce, Pat Buchanan, Steve Forbes, William Randolph Hearst and even McCain's challenger in the Arizona Republican Primary, JD Hayworth.
As one of the most famous journalists ever to run for public office, Dave Barry once wrote: "And of course the most agonizing question is: Why, really, do I WANT to be president? Is it just so that I can have a limousine and a helicopter and a big plane and a huge staff of boot-licking lackeys waiting on me hand and foot? Yes."
That just about sums up the attraction of journalists to politics.