Russell Pearce-Conqueror Jerry Lewis Endorsed by Eddie Basha, Paul Johnson; Democratic Lies Denounced

Mayor Greg Stanton, a Democrat, praises Lewis as "a bipartisan guy who supports education and is in public service for all the right reasons," even though Stanton went on to endorse Ableser

I've addressed the first three allegations previously, but the last is a particularly devious smear, along the lines of the phony "backpack-gate" that Tea Party types ginned up against Lewis last year, claiming, falsely, that Lewis had swiped money intended for homeless kids.

This was a lie, of course, the sort of shameless prevarication of which supporters of former state Senate President Russell Pearce were guilty throughout the 2011 recall.

This year, Democrats and a union-backed I.E. have targeted Lewis with attacks that are blatantly dishonest, depicting Lewis as Public Enemy Number One when it comes to education.

That should grate on all those who are aware of Lewis' work with Children's First Academy (formerly the Thomas J. Pappas School for the Homeless), where he once served as the school's principal.

As Arizona Republic columnist Laurie Roberts noted recently, state funding for education increased $64 million for 2012-2013 over the year before.

But because Lewis voted against a number of Democratic floor amendments to the budget that would have restored funds cut in previous years, some Dems and the Arizona Accountability Project believe this allows them to broadly paint Lewis as anti-education.

Generally, Dems were opposed to putting $450 million into a rainy day fund, as the Rs did in their budget, instead of using that money to pay for various needed programs.

Lewis tells me that he and other moderate members of the Republican caucus fought to get that $64 million in funding restored, including $40 million for a program called Move On When Reading, that seeks to improve the reading skills of Third Graders.

"We tried," Lewis told me recently. "We got some of that funding moved up. [Other Republicans] wanted to put it way off into 2013. We were like, no, you have to start that now in October of 2012."

Lewis was a yes vote on the budget, and a no vote on the Dems' floor amendments, including one to restore funding to KidsCare, a medical program that covers children.

"Before the budget can be voted on it has to go through all these floor amendments," he explained. "[The Democrats want] to get people like myself on record to say, he voted against this, this and this. Well, I was in those budget negotiation meetings. I know what went on, I'm not going to go against my word."

Following the same line of reasoning, if Dems want to blame Lewis for all of the floor amendments to the budget that failed, then Ableser would have to be held accountable for voting against a budget that included $40 million in funding for the Move on When Reading program.

Would that be fair? Well, if Lewis were playing by the same rules as Ableser, he would fire back on the D with this ammo, and be just as sleazy.

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It appears that if you are running for office in Az, the key to winning is being opposed by stephen lemons.


Neither Eddie Basha nor Paul Johnson are voters in LD26. Their endorsement means (and meant) squat. There's still no denying that Stephen Lemons writing such drivel as "Russell Pearce conqueror Jerry Lewis..." is completely outside of the realm of journalism. Not to mention that he accused me of committing homosexual acts because AS A VOTER IN LD26, Jerry Lewis's record MATTERS more to me than the fact that he was a one day hero.


Drivel appropriately describes Lemons' "coverage" as does the word "pathetic."


Thankfully, (and despite the clumsy suppression of ASU students votes) the VOTERS in LD26 voted for the right candidate.

ExpertShot topcommenter

So, let me get this right - when Ed Ableser doesn't vote on heinous bills proposed and/or voted on by his Republican opponent, according to Mr. Lemons, he's wrong (even though his vote won't mean a thing because the his opponent and the other Republicants control the Legislature and the Governorship).  AND then, according again to Mr. Lemons, he's also wrong when he does vote when it is important (like trying to reverse the GUTTING of our education budget in Arizona schools which his opponent voted for TWICE).  Do you know how many people stand to profit from that Move-On program which the Republicants are funnelling money into (despite the need)?  I think that politicians endorse people for political office because you agree with their positions on the issues.  Mayor Stanton is RIGHT in endorsing Ed Ableser, because Ed Ableser's opponent does not share Mayor Stanton's views on 99% of the issues on which he voted while he was in office.  However, Ed Ableser's opponent DID vote 99% of the time in sync with the Tea Party Republicants that control his Party and which control our Legislature.  Paul Johnson and Eddie Basha should be ashamed that they support an individual which wants to do so much damage to our fellow citizens with this votes, especially students and women in particular!


Why not ask Ed Ableser why he voted against the Republicant Budget first before characterizing his vote against it as something negative?    By not finding out the other sides opinions or information, that's not journalism, it's being a political HACK!Oh, and the English Learner issue - three words: Flores vs. Arizona

Mary Doe
Mary Doe

Dear Stephen Lemons. Consider a different job. You are writing one article over and over and over for how long now. What's your beef with Planned Parenthood anyway? The usual religious 'life begins at conception"?

Phoenix New Times
Phoenix New Times

Thanks the heads-up Jason. Our blogs are having issues right now. They should be back up shortly.


Jerry Lewis is a mature statesman, above all the nastiness.  If we had 90 people like him down there, our state wouldn't have near the problems we suffer.  He deserves votes for his courage.


 @Tyler Unfortunately, if we had 90 like him, we'd be slaves to the Tea Party. Jerry Lewis voted the Tea Party agenda in the Arizona Senate.

eric.nelson745 topcommenter

 @Tyler Agreed and Dems need to stop bashing him. It's unseemly and just plain wrong.


 @eric.nelson745  @Tyler kudos to lemons for telling it like it is. his lib-tard pals have been all over his ass for not towing the Democrat line

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