Friday, February 9, 2018

UPDATE: Club For Growth Wants You To Know: We Like Steve Montenegro AND Debbie Lesko And Are NOT Choosing Sides

Apprehension immediately followed Arizona's Politics' article yesterday that noted that the mega-conservative group Club for Growth had bankrolled an independent expenditure campaign touting former state Sen. Steve Montenegro and opposing former state Sen. Debbie Lesko in this month's special primary election to replace resigned-Rep. Trent Franks in #AZ08.

Rachael Slobodien, the communications director for the Club for Growth, wants readers to know that CfG actually likes both of the candidates (in a crowded GOP field) and that the robocall and mailer are not coming directly from the CfG PAC.
"Club for Growth PAC has not endorsed in the AZ-08 Congressional race. Furthermore, Club for Growth PAC has not engaged in this race at all and reports suggesting otherwise are false. Steve Montenegro and Debbie Lesko both possess strong conservative credentials and would make great additions to Congress."
CfG took exception to the implication that they had taken sides. It is correct that CfG has not endorsed a candidate. What they cannot refute is that:
1. The Club for Growth Action is "a political arm of Club for Growth.
2. CfG Action is the sole and original funder ($230,000) of National Horizon in this election cycle.
3. National Horizon is opposing Lesko and touting Montenegro.

Arizona's Politics fully explained and supported its headline in the article, and its tweet in a comment minutes later. "Bankrolling" is the operative word, and it was used correctly. In the current political world, where money can get washed through multiple spin cycles to obscure its origins, it is important to report when that original funder is speaking through a once-removed conduit.

That is what Arizona's Politics has attempted to do throughout its #50ShadesOfDarkMoney reports, and what it will continue to do. And, we will continue to present relevant responses to those reports and to provide even-handed and responsible coverage.

If you would like to show your appreciation for Arizona's Politics reporting, please consider donating to our pool to support OTHER journalism-related nonprofits.

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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