Russell Pearce Recall: Yellow Sheet Admits Senate President Is On the Ropes

grimm222.jpg
Pearce loyalist Dan Grimm: Did he commit perjury, and if so, will the MCAO hold him accountable?

The Arizona Capitol TimesYellow Sheet costs $250 per month? Crikey, that equals my liquor store tab for September. Well, almost.

Which is why I won't be subscribing anytime soon to YS, the daily report lobbyists and lawyers pony up a quarter of a grand 12 times a year (or $500 bi-monthly, or a whopping $3,000 per year) to receive in their e-mail in-boxes. 

Thankfully, I know a few lawyers willing to share when the YS opines on something that strikes my fancy.

YS did this recently, with an item declaring that, "There is a growing sentiment among Capitol observers that [state Senate President Russell] Pearce is in serious trouble in the recall election..."

The item's illustration was a skull and crossbones. It quoted unnamed lobbyists and "railbirds" labeling the Pearce camp's tactics as "desperate," particularly "recent attacks leveled against [Pearce-foe Jerry] Lewis, including that he misappropriated state funds and stole from homeless school children."

Though it would have been good for YS to note that those allegations are bogus, as I've pointed out in more than one blog item, the fact that the CapTimes is singing a different tune these days is in itself a sign that the HMS Pearce is taking on water.

As recently as July 29, YS associate editor Christian Palmer -- like most Arizona pundits save this one -- wasn't allowing Republican contender Lewis much of a shot against Pearce in the upcoming Legislative District 18 recall election.

"So far," Palmer wrote at the time, "all the signs are pointing to a disappointing blowout, with Pearce clobbering political newbie Jerry Lewis."

While praising Lewis "guts," Palmer said Lewis faced "insurmountable odds" against "the most powerful official in the state."  

Palmer hasn't been solo on this opinion. Until recently, my colleagues in the local press corps have been reluctant to grant the recall effort, much less Lewis, a marshmallow's chance of surviving Arizona in August.

Not to toot my own tuba, but when Citizens for a Better Arizona filed recall paperwork in late January, I stated that not only could the group be successful in forcing a recall, but that Pearce was vulnerable in LD18.

"It's conceivable that Pearce could lose," I wrote in a February 3 column. "In 2008, Pearce bested his Democratic rival for the state Senate by 5,343 votes. In 2010, Pearce exceeded the combined vote totals for both the Libertarian and Democratic candidates by just 4,081."

I added, "Even if Pearce ultimately prevails, a recall would damage him politically."

It's not that I'm some political Nostradamus. But I knew that Pearce took his district for granted, that the economy had soured enthusiasm for him, and that his taste for political vendettas and strong-arming fellow GOPers had turned many conservative Republicans against him.

Plus, I hated Pearce before hating Pearce was cool. And I saw the advantage in hurting him politically via the recall effort.

Finally, I've always been impressed with Randy Parraz's organizational skills from his days organizing the anti-Sheriff Joe Arpaio organization Maricopa Citizens for Safety and Accountability. 

Arpaio's goons in brown targeted him for retaliation, and in 2008 he was falsely arrested by sheriff's deputies outside a meeting of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors.

Parraz never backs down, you see, even when being handcuffed. So I was not surprised when his Citizens for a Better Arizona, jump-started with some of his own cash, quickly eclipsed a rival Pearce recall drive and began to set LD18 on fire like Dresden circa 1945.

I later pointed out that Pearce has been his own worst enemy in the recall donnybrook, and that local journos were dismissing the effort out-of-hand and would end by choking on barbecued crow.

That said, I'm not counting Pearce out at this stage of the game. The latest internal poll I have knowledge of showed Lewis besting Pearce by one percent, with sham recall candidate Olivia Cortes pulling five percent, her official withdrawal notwithstanding.

Even should Pearce squeak out a win, not all is lost. Attorney Tom Ryan, who forced Cortes' withdrawal and exposed a plot by the East Valley Tea Party to run her as a diversionary candidate, may have grounds to take the matter back into court, particularly if Cortes' name on the ballot ends up being the deciding factor.

Interestingly, the very same YS report scored a quote from EVTP member and Pearce loyalist Dan Grimm, admitting to a CapTimes reporter that, "Just as the main objective of the recall movement is to knock out Russell Pearce, the main objective of mine was to knock out Jerry Lewis using Olivia Cortes."

This directly contradicts statements Grimm made under oath in superior court to the effect that he circulated Cortes petitions so as to have an option other than Lewis on the ballot, should Pearce lose.

Did Grimm commit perjury? That's for the county attorney to look into. And if he doesn't and should Pearce cheat fate, I suspect Ryan will be back in court, placing Grimm, Pearce and all the rest of the gang-that-couldn't-shoot-straight under oath. 

In that case, for his sake, Pearce would be better off losing, though I doubt he and powerful backers such as Chuck Coughlin and Chad Willems realize it at this point in time.

I, of course, want Pearce defeated. If he goes down November 8, his political career is over. Forget those who say he will rise again, like Jason in the Friday the 13th flicks. 

First, his district will soon change due to redistricting, eliminating his free ride forever. And second, Pearce cannot win an election outside of his own ultra-conservative postage stamp. Even that's not a sure thing anymore.

If Pearce survives November 8, he will be hobbled, and will have only gotten over the hump by scamming the electorate. Ryan will be on his tail, and the senator's brother Judge Lester Pearce will likely face an ethics complaint.

More importantly, Republicans, in LD 18 and elsewhere, are no longer afraid to speak out against Pearce. That genie won't go back into the bottle, and Pearce's days of power will remain in decline.


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30 comments
guest
guest

Great photo ---- Rod-thru-the-head.

ExpertShot
ExpertShot

Just to go against the grain as I am wont to do, I have a personal wish that Pearce wins the recall.  I don't think the populace of Arizona is outraged enough to actually change things in Arizona.  I believe we need a full on political disaster of monumental proportions - something that will not happen with Pearce gone from office.  I'm not sure what will get the attention of the Arizona electorate, but if the disaster of the last 24 years of Republican rule hasn't gotten their attention yet, obviously a club upside their collective heads is needed. With Pearce gone, things will still suck, Republicans will still be in power and the regular folks will still be sitting ducks for the 1% which rules Arizona with an Iron hand.

Louis
Louis

I like it ,I like it adios Olivia adios Russell Pearce two more jobs created we are heading in the right direction  Mesa.

Gerry_C
Gerry_C

If as we hope, Pearce loses the recall, I think that there would still be grounds for the MCAO or AG to explore perjury charges.  Why is Arpaio not getting involved already.  I thought he enforces all the laws all the time, or at least I RECALL that he made that claim. 

FormerRepublican
FormerRepublican

Amen....ole' white sheet must be run out of the State Legislature.  I will most definitely be celbrating that evening..........................................................

Coz
Coz

Lets hope its one down, Pearce, and Bozo Joe Arpaio to go.

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

Good article as always, I welcome the good news and I'm opening a beer to celebrate.

Truth08
Truth08

Howie Fisher, and a few bloggers from the left who you neglected to mention Lemons, also predicted that Pearce was not only not be recalled, but after the recall was implemented, still predicting that Pearce would win..

From Oct-10...(Rogue Columnist) ..."ongoing housing depression to the normality of crazy politics. Neither of us think there's a chance that the odious Russell Pearce will be recalled. It makes me wonder for the thousandth time: Why did the East Valley get stuck with the nihilist Mormons..." 

http://roguecolumnist.typepad....

For Capitol Times to reverse its course is a flip-flop of ...'epic proportions'.. for one, and great news for the State of Arizona on the other. 

Lastly, there is the infamous Horizon episode in which all the Round-Table Crew predicts he is ..'desperate and in trouble'.. a giant flip-flop by them as well. Courtesy of Ted Simons, Jose' Cardenas and crew..

http://www.azpbs.org/horizon/d...

He is desperate, and the State (as a whole) will win in the end, once he is voted out..

Regards,Truth

Muammar Qaddafi
Muammar Qaddafi

Russell Pearce had just as good a chance in February to survive opposition efforts, as I did.

Jason
Jason

Yes Mr. Lemons, our sleazy, unethical, corrupt, mentally sick Senate president is indeed on the ropes.

Pearce knows he is a goner in mere weeks. Pearce is absolutely finished in Arizona politics. He is too damaged politically to recover.

As the Rev. Martin Luther King said: "Free at last. Free at last. Thank God Almighty, we are all free at last."

Wanumba
Wanumba

I listened to this sack-o-crap on the radio today, he was absolutely sure he was going to win.  Just like when he said he was absolutely sure that the recall wouldn't work, and when he was absolutely sure that the recall wasn't legal, and he was absolutely sure that the AZ Supreme court would find the recall illegal..etc...etc.

Go home Russel, we don't need trash like you in power.

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

EP, Rus-SELL Pearce causes damage to the State and the people of Arizona on a daily basis, we sincerely can not afford him staying in office, I see you point but there has to be another way of getting the attention of the Arizona electorate with without pearce and his "friends" in power destroying our state, our reputation, and turning our home into 1943 nazi Germany.

guest
guest

They can take Thomas/Alexander/Aubuchon with them!

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

Brother, don't forget horne and huppenthal, these two vermin are pearce ilk and part of the corruption problem too.

Jason
Jason

Is it Sam Adams?

Bnbk
Bnbk

Hell me too,I just might have 2

wherewasi
wherewasi

Too F-ing funny!!  Thanks for the great laugh!

Vic
Vic

"Go home Russel", easy for you to say.  Not so easy for us that actually live by him. For us, while it is always important to put out our trash and have it taken away, never so much as our trash pickup on Nov 8th.  Please Mesa, remove this trash from ourneighborhood once and for all.  As a bonus maybe, if he loses, he will leave LD18 and retire far away. It would certainly smell better in my part of town!

Trouble
Trouble

Does anyone really think that if he is recalled and is not the candidate in the election that he will go away?

Bottom feeding narcissistic blowhards like Pearce never go away. Even when defeated (Santorum in Pa was soundly defeated and now he's all over the place in the debates) politicians are unseated, they will always find a way to insinuate themselves in some sort of political position. Pearce will be back... as a lobbyist perhaps. But he'll be back.

Unfortunately true. It happens all the time. They end up behind the scenes for a while and then come out swinging. Once these kinds of creeps taste power, they crave it worse than heroin or cigarettes.

Jason
Jason

Yep. Why are voters of this state so stupid as to elect a corrupt mofo like Horne and a clueless twit like Huppenthal to any political office?

Muammar Qaddafi
Muammar Qaddafi

Someone asked me if I knew the difference between a Mesa Mormon and Joe Arpaio.

"The Mormon has the power of recall," he said.

I died laughing  . . .

AZHistory
AZHistory

I suspect he'll go out of the election fight like JD Hayword did. He won't say anything to the public and demand that all the votes be counted- every last one of them. If he still has lost by that point, don't expect much to be said from him. A bully without power is a great thing to see. It was wonderful to see JD stripped of his seat and I hope it see the same thing with Pearce.

Guest23
Guest23

The oocupy wall street folks have started a web site that outlines their political objectives and one is that politicians cannot receive jobs as lobbyists or similar employment for five years after they leave office. This is a political stance I definitely can stand behind whether the poilitical figure is republican or democrat or independent for that matter.

Muammar Qaddafi
Muammar Qaddafi

At least they didn't hang me from an overhead pipe through the skull, like they did to that unfortunate Dan Grimm.

mikefrombisbee
mikefrombisbee

Dead several hours and you can still tell a good joke. Now THAT'S impressive!

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