Joe Arpaio-Stooge Mike Stauffer Is "Olivia Cortes on Steroids," Says Randy Parraz
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JoesGottoGo.com Citizens for a Better Arizona's doorhanger-take on The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
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Is Republican-turned-Independent sheriff's candidate Mike Stauffer simply Sheriff Joe Arpaio cat's paw? Or is something even more sinister at play?
Not too long ago, while Stauffer-shill West Kenyon was still taking my calls, I pointedly asked him where Stauffer got $40,000 to lend his campaign, and thereby pay for the assistance of a professional signature-gathering service.
"It's his money," said Kenyon of the $40K. "He lent himself $40,000."
Without that $40K, Stauffer, who was once secretary of the old Legislative District 7 GOP while Kenyon was its chair, would not now be on the general election ballot.
But where did Stauffer come by $40K? Did he cash out all or part of a 401K? Did he have it in coffee cans buried in his backyard?
"I don't know where he got the $40,000 from," Kenyon said of Stauffer. "He has $40,000. He's funding his own campaign...From what I know, it's his money."
Kenyon declined to ask his candidate and get back to me with an answer. But I'll concede that Stauffer may have been able to find $40,000 in liquidity. Though, according to public records, he's hardly wealthy.
As a Scottsdale Police lieutenant, Stauffer made a little over $106,000 per year, according to his personnel file. Zillow.com lists Stauffer's single family Cave Creek home, built in 1995, at about $327,000.
For tax purposes, the Maricopa County Assessor values the same property at $230,000.
Stauffer's financial disclosure statement with the county, filed in May, notes that he incurred debts over $1,000 as of January of this year from two sources, Fidelity Investments and ICMA Retirement. Perhaps this is the origin of the $40K.
Still, why throw away $40K on a race that you know you're going to lose, $40K that you will not get back? That is, unless someone plans to help you out in that regard.
"Actually, I think [Stauffer] has a very good chance [of winning]," Kenyon remarked without laughing.
Granted, our conversation occurred a couple of weeks before a poll commissioned by the Penzone camp revealed that Stauffer was pulling a little over eight percent, in fourth place behind "none of the above."
As pathetic as that eight percent is, it's enough to make "Single-Digit" Stauffer the spoiler. The same poll shows Penzone 5.5 points away from catching Arpaio.
Which is why Randy Parraz, co-founder of Citizens for a Better Arizona, regards Stauffer as "Olivia Cortes on steroids," referring to the infamous sham candidate who emerged during the successful 2011 recall of ex-state Senate President Russell Pearce, with the intent of siphoning votes from Pearce's rival, state Senator Jerry Lewis.
"They went a little bit further this time," Parraz speculated of dark forces he believes are pulling Stauffer's strings. "Stauffer is actually interested in getting as much press as he can, versus Olivia who just wanted to stay out of the limelight."