Tuesday, May 28, 2013

READ: Recall Situation For Maricopa County Sheriff Looks "Dire" --Joe Arpaio; Meanwhile, Recall Proponent March To Finish Line; ANALYSIS

The latest in a series of "urgent" fundraising e-mails (and videos) from Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio this morning warns that the "thugs" who are now camped on the County Courthouse steps - in sight of Arpaio's executive offices in the Wells Fargo building - "may even surpass" their goal of 335,000 valid signatures to force a recall election.

He urges his "Fellow Patriots" to give generously today because "the situation was (is) dire".  (The complete text of today's e-mail is below the jump.)  Last week, he also e-mailed out a pleading video, which is also posted below the jump.

Meanwhile, the groups collecting the signatures to recall Arpaio seem to following a strategy of camping and marching to the finish line.  They have set up a round-the-clock camping/headquarters on the public plaza outside the County Courthouse (also the home of the County Recorder's Office, where they will have to turn in their signatures on Thursday afternoon).

And, coalition partner Promise In Action is marching this morning to the Board of Supervisors' offices, Arpaio's offices and in the afternoon to the Phoenix City Council's chamers.  While they are collecting signatures at their makeshift headquarters, they also appear to be collecting and notarizing  filled petitions, and sending out volunteers to gather last-minute signatures elsewhere.

While Respect Arizona appears to be striving to be able to turn in more than the 335,000+ signatures necessary to qualify for the ballot, they are not likely to have attempted to verify the validity of most of the signatures collected in the last two weeks, since they had to re-suspend the paid circulating effort.

The paid circulators, Sign Here Petitions, had persons specifically tasked with verifying the validity of the signatures (since it is on that basis that they pay the circulators, so as not to turn in a bunch of "Mickey Mouse" signatures).  RA has to do the cost/benefit analysis of the best use of their volunteers' time - verifying signatures or collecting new signatures (or, calling out more volunteers, etc.).

They also are faced with the quandary of what do they do if they have, say 350,000 total signatures, but it is highly likely that - if when challenged - they will fall short of the number of valid signatures.  Do they turn in those unverified signatures to show that they did something, or do they decide to show them to the media but not make them public records (subjecting signers to potential abuse from Arpaio supporters for no good reason).

RA is deliberately being vague when asked the number of signatures or valid signatures that they currently have.  But based on the most recent announcement (three weeks ago) of 200,000 valid, how much it is likely that the paid circulators got in their 2nd go-round, how many others the volunteers may have verified in the last couple of weeks, and other hints gleaned from e-mails/conversations/etc., Arizona's Politics thinks that the situation may not be as "dire" as the Sheriff is claiming today (though do send money if you are so inclined), but that he will want that money to pay his own signature-checkers and attorneys.

And, RA did get a gust of wind from the U.S. District Court ruling on Friday, and they seem to be making a big final march to the Thursday finish line.   But, even if they do file much more than the minimum number of total signatures, they will be holding their breath as their signature-checkers and attorneys will be doing battle.  (Do send money if you are so inclined.)

(May 28 e-mail)
Fellow Patriot,

Time is running out.

The thugs who are running the recall campaign against me are working overtime in these last couple of days before they are forced to turn over all of their signatures collected.

Insiders in Arizona tell me that they are close to reaching their goal and they may even surpass it.

Fellow Patriot, I know I have leaned on you a lot, but I wouldn't be unless the situation was dire.

Every donation we go directly towards fighting back and defeating this egregious recall. Please follow this link to make your most generous contribution today.

I cannot tell you how truly thankful I am to have your support.

Very Sincerely Yours,

Sheriff Joe

Sheriff Joe Arpaio
Maricopa County, Arizona

P.S. I have spent my entire life fighting for what is right and the rule of law. I have fought against Mexican Drug Cartels who have threatened my life and my family. I have fought against a corrupt Department of Justice who is more interested in scoring political points than enforcing the law. I have fought against President Obama who doesn't have the first clue on how to secure our borders or protect our citizens.

I will not let this recall stop me from doing my job, but I cannot fight back alone. I need your immediate help to fight back.

Paid for by Elect Sheriff Joe Arpaio
(portion of Promise Arizona press release, 5/28):
Promise Arizona in Action volunteers will march from 701 S. First Street beginning at 9:30 a.m. today, May 28, to 301 West Jefferson Street in downtown Phoenix in front of the Board of Supervisors auditorium to show solidarity with Respect Arizona's efforts to recall Arpaio from office. Respect Arizona is leading a petition drive to recall the sheriff.

At noon, the PAZ in Action procession will move to the Maricopa County Sheriff's offices at 100 W. Washington Street in downtown Phoenix where PAZ in Action volunteers and supporters will demand the Sheriff's resignation. At 2:30 p.m., PAZ In Action will gather at the Phoenix City Council Chambers to ask the Council to pass a resolution demanding that Arpaio be fired.

We welcome your comments about this post. Or, if you have something unrelated on your mind, please e-mail to info-at-arizonaspolitics-dot-com or call 602-799-7025. Thanks.

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