I am not running for office.
I do not make a career asking for money donations from the public for recall efforts either.
I’m a former long life Republican activist who left the party for good and became an independent registered voter in Arizona. There are more independent voters in the State of Arizona than Democratic voters now.
I’m a mere woman and veteran of our Armed Forces who has been supporting legal immigration reform for over a decade now, but I’m also the woman who initiated the first recall (there were two) against Senator Russell Pearce until I was asked to withdraw my effort or join the second recall Russell Pearce effort shortly after a wealthy individual pledged a sizable amount.
Many of us wondered why Mr. Randy Parraz & Co. would initiate a Sheriff Joe Arpaio recall shortly after he was elected in November 2012 – and just as the people have spoken in re-electing President Obama, many people have spoken, too, in Arizona when they chose to re-elect Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
I did not vote for Sheriff Joe Arpaio. I voted for the independent candidate and former Republican Mike Stauffer for Sheriff in November 2012 because I could not bring myself to vote for the democratic candidate who had a domestic violence police record. I’m a woman … what do you expect?
November 2012 Sheriff vote outcome according to the Maricopa County Recorder reflects:
(Rep) Sheriff Arpaio votes: 679,967 or 50.66%
(Dem) Candidate Paul Penzone votes: 599,328 or 44.65%
Independent Mike Stauffer votes: 61,973 or 4.62%
In looking at the above numbers, you can see that Independent Mike Stauffer was not a spoiler to the Sheriff race despite the myth makers. Mike Stauffer pulled many conservative voters to his side despite the sore losers and all one has to do is revert to basic simple math skills. If we were to give Penzone all of Stauffer’s votes (and I’m being generous here), Penzone would have still needed 18,666 votes in order to be equal with Arpaio. 18,666 votes, folks.
Bottom line: Arpaio kicked everyone’s ass in November 2012.
We all know the State of Arizona is still ‘red’ and that is indicative when we witnessed (D) Candidate Richard Carmona lose to Republican Jeff Flake despite the amount of money invested in the Carmona campaign. Indeed the State of Arizona swung Mitt Romney and not President Obama during the November 2012 elections.
Here are some reasons why I believe the Recall Arpaio effort failed:
- The recall was initiated too soon after Sheriff Joe Arpaio was elected.
- A growing grassroots effort by Citizens to Protect Fair Election Results is suing the Recall Arpaio backers by attorney Larry Klayman on behalf of the voters of Maricopa County based on “Arizona Constitution at Article 8, part 1, section 5, which prohibits a recall within six months after an elected official is sworn in.” Many believed the outcome of the Arpaio Recall would fail and witnessed how the action galvanized the resolve of Arpaio’s supporters.
- Both Randy Parraz and Lilia Alvarez have run for public office and many Arizona locals are skeptical with regard to their organizing efforts. Is organizing being accomplished for the good of the public? Or, are they organizing to create a database of names/addresses and numbers of people who might consider voting for them in the future? Why is there a lack of transparency?
- Ending the regime of Sheriff Joe Arpaio must begin at the federal level. A recall against Arpaio is an attempt to put a mere local band aid on what is causing many of us heartache because immigration and racial profiling can be reduced when we fix the broken immigration system. A legal mechanism must be supported and we cannot do so when resources and people are distracted from supporting the Gang of Eight bipartisan legal immigration reform. The community is financially tapped out, and efforts should have been pointed in getting people to call upon Congress to support the Gang of Eight Legal Immigration Reform all along. The core of this debacle has much to do with the broken immigration system because the 287(g) federal program in essence created Arpaio as a monster.
- Former Democratic activists and supporters of Randy Parraz & Co. are no longer giving money to his efforts because: “Parraz kept soliciting money under the Citizens for Better Arizona (CBA) banner to recall Arpaio where monies will be hidden. Therefore, financial contributors will only be able to see a portion of the money they give, how it’s collected and how they were spent.” Arpaio has stated in a letter to his supporters: “Because they didn’t like the outcome of that election they are now going to spend millions of dollars to force a recall election this coming fall. So far they have raised over $1.3 million to defeat me.” Where did the $1.3 million dollars go?
- Randy Parraz (Lilia Alvarez’s husband) does not work well with others and it seems as if there is a bit of a patron system at play in Arizona with regard to their coalition building. In fact, a Democratic voter was bullied by Parraz in the presence of many witnesses and was threatened for “trespassing” at a public event by Parraz.
- Parraz & Co. did not give credit where credit was due with regard to the entire community who all pitched in andcontributed to the 2011 special recall when Jerry Lewis beat Senator Russell Pearce. The ousting of Russell Pearce took a combined effort by the entire community of Mesa, Arizona — particularly by Mormons like Daryl Williams who showed their bravery and leadership. Minimizing the efforts of others who gave small or large (to recall efforts) is not smart because recalls are not won by one man – it is won by an entire community.
- The Arizona Democratic Party was smart to not support a (D) candidate in the (AZ-R) Jerry Lewis vs. (AZ-R) Russell Pearce 2011 special elections because that particular legislative district was heavily Republican and conservative. However, the Arizona Democratic Party should have taken a lesson from that and considered not supporting a Democratic candidate for the 2012 Maricopa County Sheriff race in light of the Democratic voter share they lost in 2011. They chose to do so despite the former Republican and strong conservative submitting his hat in the MCSO race. The micro-targeting demographic is simply not there for the Democrats yet because it will take a CONSERVATIVE to oust Arpaio in much the same way Pearce was ousted.
- Arizona locals are fatigued with Parraz & Co. Arizona Democratic voters are not happy with Parraz since he has history of getting paid with public donations and contributions while several other volunteers go unpaid – working under extreme hot weather conditions. We are told students of ASU and SCC suffered with their coursework because they were working so hard on the recall Arpaio effort. If Parraz knew he didn’t have the signatures a month ago, why did he continue to ask for volunteers and money to the last day if he knew it was not going to succeed? Why put these kids and students through this? A community organizer states: “He keeps promising salvation that never comes while financing his own life on the hope, and sweat of people who are desperate for relief….”