Russell Pearce Robocalls Reported on by ABC15, Channel 5 Reports on Olivia Cortes Confusion

Hat tip to ABC 15 for picking up on the story I filed Saturday about deceptive robocalls targeting Democratic and Latino voters in Legislative District 18 from the right-wing Safeguard Arizona's Workers PAC, chaired by local Tea Partier Ron Ludders.

Ludders, who is pro-Pearce, claims the robocalls are "educational." Actually, they are mis-informational. The calls, some of which feature a Ricardo Montalban-sounding kinda guy, encourage people to write-in a candidate as a protest vote.

But, as Maricopa County Elections Director Karen Osborne pointed out to me on Saturday, and as Arizona Secretary of State spokesman Matt Roberts confirmed to me today, no one has registered in LD18 as a write-in candidate.

"Since no write-in's filed, [no write-in votes] will be tabulated," Roberts explained.

Translation: you can write-in a name, but it will count for nothing. In doing so, an elector would be throwing away his or her vote. 

Which I'm sure is exactly what Ludders and his pal state Senate President Russell Pearce want folks to do, if they are inclined to vote for Pearce-foe Jerry Lewis.

Roberts says the SOS' office has not yet determined whether or not an investigation of the robocalls is merited.

I've got a call into the U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Arizona, to see if they're going to look into the robocalls, or anything to do with the sham candidacy of Olivia Cortes, for that matter. Will update if I receive a reply.

FYI: You can find the USAO's citizen complaint form, here

To be fair, I do not know if federal laws would be triggered by these robocalls, which are deceptive, but may not violate any statutes, state or federal. Also, I don't really trust the feds to look into anything. 

(Evidence the federal probe into Sheriff Joe Arpaio, which is at 1,057 days and counting with zero action.)

Plus, if you outlawed deception in political advertising, there'd be no political advertising, practically.

On another front, Channel 5 has done a solid piece about an LD18 elector who threw away her vote on Olivia Cortes before learning that Cortes was a sham who'd pulled out of the race.

I can tell you, there is some confusion out there. I went out with volunteers for the pro-recall group Citizens for a Better Arizona yesterday, which is separate from the Promise Arizona group Channel 5 reported on.

One Hispanic lady explained to us that she had initially voted for Cortes, but after she found out that Cortes was a sham, she "spoiled" her ballot and now plans to vote via provisional ballot on Tuesday.

Other CBA volunteers had similar stories, but fortunately, the people they were encountering have received the info that Cortes is a sham and are acting on that info.

Once someone has mailed or dropped off an early ballot, the vote is cast, and there's no going back. But if you've already marked your ballot, you can indicate it's "spoiled" by checking off a box on the ballot, and then vote via a provisional ballot.

CBA and other groups are doing a great job of getting the word out by going door-to-door and phone-banking. However, the CBS 5 story and the tales of near-misses I'm hearing reveal that Cortes' cynical candidacy has had some impact, despite attorney Tom Ryan's lawsuit and the the resulting media frenzy.

As I said in my last column, Cortes, the East Valley Tea Party, Pearce and all of his followers and highly paid campaign consultants better be praying Lewis wins, as I've predicted he will. Otherwise, Ryan's going to drag them all into court post-election, and it won't be pretty.

Just received a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division stating that the DOJ will be sending elections monitors to Alameda County, California; Springfield, Massachussetts; Humphreys, Leflore, Panola and Wilkinson Counties, Mississippi; Lorain County, Ohio; and Jasper, Texas.

Sadly, Mesa, Arizona is not included. This is a big disappointment, and makes it even more important that poll watchers and the media monitor election day activities at all poll locations in LD18 to make sure there is no intimidation of voters or other hanky-panky.

The pro-Pearce camp has shown, over and over again, that it will do anything to win, even if it's possibly illegal, as may be the case with the Cortes affair.

They are a nasty bunch, prone to deception, threats, and various scofflaw shenanigans. Thus, vigilance is the watchword for November 8. 


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95 comments
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Dave Francis
Dave Francis

Smith’s THE LEGALWORKFORCE ACT’ (H.R.2885.) The ‘Ways and Means Committee led by Majority SpeakJohn Boehner (R-OH) must adopt the Mandatory E-Verify Bill (H.R. 2885.) andshould be bombarded by demanding voters, as never before. Use Google or yourfavorite search engine, to type NumbersUSA site and read about the terribleconsequences of the illegal alien invasion, costs and other statistics. GET ON THESE LAWMAKERS CASES IMMEDIATELY—Call this number at theWashington Switchboard 202-224-3121.  You can also fax freely your politicians andthose involved with E-Verify and demand action in Congress.  YOUR JOBS ARE AT RISK, UNLESS YOU STOP THISTRAVESTY OF OUR IMMIGRATION LAWS? You can also see the corruption exposed atJudicial Watch, at federal and state level. Never forget that illegal alien’s vote, with Democrats looking the otherway; they probably voted in Arizona yesterday? Join the TEA PARTY as we are theAmerican People.

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

Mr. Lemons, thank you Sir, and thank you also to your awesome team, this great occasion would not have happened without your dedication and skills.

Thank you also to the people of Mesa for showing this cancer the door. 

Drinks all around everybody, let's celebrate!!!

Jason!  did you drink my Sam Adams? 

AnotherMesaVoter
AnotherMesaVoter

Stephen Lemons - you painstakingly researched every detail of this election. You enlightened us with your investigations even to the point of posting the court documents involved. I was always able to come here to get the truth. You were right on top of all the Pearce scandals. Personally I started posting Sept. 24th with the Cortes scandal and realized throughout the web I posted over 60 times, mainly with rebuttals because you had given me the facts. Thank you and Dennis Gilman.

Bnbk
Bnbk

Many people deserve thanks for making this happen,too many to list,you know who you are & I thank you all ! Thanks to the voters of LD18 for doing what is best for AZ.

Marcy
Marcy

The utter dishonesty of Russell Pearce supporters was his downfall.  Without a doubt this great idea to run a cham candidate backfired and blew up in their face.  Thanks in large part to the dedication of Mr Lemons in pursuing the story.

Coz
Coz

Bye, bye Pearce. Don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out scumbag...

 

 PercentVotes

PEARCE, RUSSELL45.25%9,188CORTES, OLIVIA (withdrawn)1.24%252LEWIS, JERRY53.26%10,816 

Bnbk
Bnbk

There seems to be a trend all across the country against the right wings over reaching policies.I suspect  this trend will continue through the 2012 elections. 

Maxparraz
Maxparraz

Let me be the first to apologize to all my friends here.  I know that in the heat of debate, sometimes I say things that are stupid, nasty and downright shameful.  But now that the election is over and the results are in, I pledge my full support to our new Senator, while wishing Russell the quiet retirement he so richly deserves.

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

I think we all have at one time or another said things that are stupid, nasty and downright shameful, but the main thing is to get back on track and do the right thing, we owe it to our children, they deserve to grow up in peace and harmony, and free from corrupt, racist assholes that put skin color above individual accomplishments and character.  As a member of the US Armed Forces I only saw 3 colors, RED, WHITE, and BLUE, regardless of skin color, background, religion, accent, none of that mattered to me because I knew that guy/gal next to me was some body's son or daughter and yet they gave an Oath to risk their lives to protect mine and the lives of Americans, and that is all I needed to know, those are the true American Patriots, not some clown wrapping himself with the American flag like a sausage and doing exactly the opposite of what America and American values stand for.  Peace.  

JeffFarias
JeffFarias

LEWIS  53Pearce  46

at 8:01

Oblivious Cortex
Oblivious Cortex

Republic's reporting at 9pm is totally fucked up.  They are calling the early ballots "provisional ballots," and they are reporting that the early ballots have already been counted.   Only half the vote has been counted so far -- 14 out of 16 precincts -- but the trend should continue.  Congratulations to Senator Lewis.

wherewasi
wherewasi

Anyone here catching the cat fight between Shane W on Sonoran Alliance and Dee Dee Blase of the Hispanic-Politico blog?  The claws have come out and there is plenty of hissing going on.

Jason
Jason

I wasn't even aware that Dee Dee and Shane were fighting, but Dee Dee will win. She's against Pearce and his Nazi ways.

wherewasi
wherewasi

It's quite the cat fight, J!  You should check it out!

Rob
Rob

You know where....wasn't sure to bring it up on there...Do you see Shane's sudden admission of the Cortes fiasco as perhaps him laying some groundwork for a break from Pearce in the event of him losing?

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

Yeah, the snake in the grass can see rus-Sell's demise  and is looking for his next meal because his knows rus-SELL wont be able to provide it anymore.

wherewasi
wherewasi

Yes, I thought that was interesting, given the fact that I have been trying to call him out on that for weeks.  I guess I don't have the power of DD.  LOL.  Reading what she said, I don't find her to be half a bubble off plumb and level.  Her contention that he is going to go down as a guy who is against Hispanic women has not so much to do with what he HAS said, but more so about what he HASN'T said.  (His failure to speak up about Cortes and how -and who-  the Pearce team took that ball and ran with it.)

He was quite content to be oblivious until she called him out.  Now he is outraged.  He also has been posting about some "ministry" work he has done -- I have asked him to clarify that.  

We shall see.  I will keep trying to find out what makes Shane Shane.  If I get "banned" for it, so be it.  Dee Dee makes a fairly valid argument, although Shane does not blatantly post things about "wetbacks" and "illegal immigrants", he does not do anything to stem the flow...  Are you guilty for failing to stem the flow of rhetoric?   Hmmmm... interesting question.  He has most certainly allowed posts from "outside sources" (Bentley, Fenger) that are patently FALSE, without retraction.  That is like "I didn't lie.  I just didn't confront a lie when I saw one."

Time will tell.  We will see what Shane is made of - some day.

http://tucsoncitizen.com/hispa...

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

Hey rus-SELL!!! 

JUDGEMENT DAY asshole, judgement day!!!

Jason
Jason

Yes Brother, today is indeed Judgment Day for our mentally sick and corrupt Senate president.

What a fantastic birthday present it will be when Pearce is thrown out on his sorry ass...I've got a chilled bottle of Captain Morgan ready!

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

Happy Birthday my Brother, and as a present from the people of Mesa you get, your very own RECALLED rus-SELL pearce.  LOL.

Hit the road Jack, and dont you come back no more, no more, no more, hit the road Jack................................................................................LOL

Bnbk
Bnbk

You sure like that Captain Morgan, Jason . I'm going to have to try some some day.

Mistalee
Mistalee

I hope there are observers galore at the polls today making sure that right-wing goons including Arpaiopiggies aren't trying to intimidate hispanic voters.

maxparraz
maxparraz

i hope there are. cause you know Dems tell them to vote early - vote often!

teknik1200
teknik1200

today is the day.   we should all know the outcome soon.

Jason
Jason

About 3 hours the polls close.

Follower_of_the_ONE
Follower_of_the_ONE

Well in approximately 24 hours the "grand event" that we have all been waiting for will have passed!  The hard work of Randy Parraz, Chad Snow and the rest of the participating individuals who have done an absolute [political] career smashing job!  I wonder if security will escort him out of the Senate Building on Wednesday?  Then on Thursday it will be time to start working off the rest of the list!

Whine-umba
Whine-umba

Lewis wins, Pearce will continue to whinge like a 9 year old girl.  We need to flush Russ like the waste that he is.  I'm hoping that the Pearce posse gets rounded up and that there indictments, fines and jail.

Guest
Guest

Great article, Stephen!  Nice to see you covering the real issue - voter suppression.  Channel 15's story last night & today's channel 12 story both missed the point completely.  This past weekend's robocalls specifically encouraged voters to write-in a candidate.  Both tv reports I saw missed that entirely. Thanks for getting the truth out there! 

Tina
Tina

Great informative article, Stephen.  Great too that you've gone out yourself with the CBA volunteers and gotten reactions first hand with themI saw that Ch 5 news item last night with the Spanish speaking voter warning others not to vote for non-candidate Olivia Cortes as she had unwittingly done before learning of Cortes' withdrawing her illegitimate candidacy.  It about set me on ny ear, because I know there were unheeded pleas made to County Elections, to inform early voters, when there was still time to officially inform them that Cortes was not a candidate.  

I agree that the pro-Pearce should be hoping for a Lewis win.  because it "won't be pretty" if Tom Ryan drags them and their unlawful shenanigans through the courts again.  

teknik1200
teknik1200

unfortunately the rest of the government is on RPs side.  They will not investigate, they will act like this deception is trivial as they have already.

Royalphoenix2
Royalphoenix2

Lewis wins 65-35%. If I were in Mr. Pearces shoes, I would pack my bags, take my un-deserved tax payer funded pension, and leave the state. peace

Oblivious Cortex
Oblivious Cortex

In the absence of an official New Times "guess the results" contest, I'll go on the record here with:  Lewis 53%, Pierce 45%, Cortes 2%.

JeffFarias
JeffFarias

with 87%  0f the votes in it'sLewis    52.97%pearce    45.74%Cortez    1.29%

good  call    OC

Loosecannonsbluesband
Loosecannonsbluesband

Hey Jeff - Postinos catered the victory celebration for Stanton!!!!  Yummy.  

Tina
Tina

Because of a few news items that have come out in the last day and a half, I'll go along with your predictions.  More cautiously, I'd say Lewis 52%, Pearce 46%, Cortes 2%.

maxparraz
maxparraz

if lewis wins... nothing changes! lol

SB1070 - check

the Budget remains the same

jerry will just be Parraz cabin boy for a year is all

Rob
Rob

"if lewis wins... nothing changes!"Wrong.  There will be a new Senate President.

"SB1070 - check"Have the Supes agreed to even hear it?

"the Budget remains the same"Are you aware how the Budget process works?But, I'd bet if you can get a message to Jan while she's still in New York selling her book and tell her this (if you can catch her in-between calls from any of the Quayles), she'll probably think she doesn't need to come up with a Budget for the next session. 

Give it a shot...it'll be a hoot!

US War Veteran
US War Veteran

Jan "Drunk Puppet" Brewer will be in Irvine soon pimping out her book, I think she specifically picked these dates to be out of Arizona so she couldn't hear rus-SELL pearce cries and screams when the TAXPAYING voters kick this imbecile to the curve.

Although the Drunk Puppet should be in Arizona at least pretending to be the Governor, the position she is unqualified for but got elected for nonetheless instead of being on book tours.  The taxpayers pay her to sit on the Governor's chair and that is exactly where she should be.

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