Four Maricopa Judges With Hispanic-Sounding Last Names in Bottom Six for Vote Getters -- Looks Like Evidence of Racism

Categories: Election 2012

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Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Jose Padilla drew the most "no" votes for judge retention in yesterday's election. Bigotry by voters likely boosted his negative numbers.

Out of 43 Maricopa County Superior Court judges, four have last names that sound Hispanic.

It doesn't seem like a coincidence that those four happen to have ended up among the six worst vote-getters in last night's election.

Scanning over the vote counts today, it looks like Maricopa County residents -- voting in secret in ballot booths or at home -- showed a discriminatory side they may or may not show in public.


With 99 percent of precincts reporting, the four judges and the percentage of "no" votes they've received so far are:

* Jose Padilla -- 44.75
* Lisa Daniel Flores -- 40.98
* Connie Contes -- 39.58
* Jeanne Marie Garcia -- 38.09

Though he safely made retention, Padilla had the most "no" votes of all 43 judges.

Padilla was followed by John Hannah as the two worst vote-getters. Hannah had 43.89 percent of "no" votes.

Judge Thomas LeClair also landed in the bottom six with 39.89 percent "no" votes. Perhaps the bigots checking "no" on all the Hispanic names thought "LeClair" sounded too foreign, too -- maybe even French.

It's not even like politics would explain everything. Contes was appointed by former Republican Governor Jane Hull, for example, though it's true the other three Hispanic-ish-named judges were appointed by former Democratic Governor Jan Napolitano.

Some conservatives seem to like a few of the Napolitano appointees, judging by a voters' guide to the judges published by the conservative blog site, Sonoran Alliance a couple of weeks ago. Sonoran Alliance suggested voting for none of the apparently Hispanic judges (Flores isn't actually Hispanic -- that's her married name) but encouraged voters to select LeClaire, a Governor Jan Brewer appointee. So again, politics doesn't entirely explain the bad results for the Spanish-sounding judges.

Racism and bigotry would explain the situation. Thousands of Maricopa County voters apparently have a system when looking at the names of all those judges they've never heard of -- vote against the "Mexican."



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11 comments
NotSo
NotSo

I voted against Judge Padilla because he is corrupt. Not just with my case either. Google Dawn Axsom and you can read for yourselves why approval for him was so low. I cannot speak for the other judges.

robert_graham
robert_graham

Ray Stern at the New Times is such a jackass. He's another yellow journalist.

robert_graham
robert_graham

And Hispanics then who voted for only Hispanics are then racist too. What's good for the goose is good for the gander.

robert_graham
robert_graham

No, it looks like the people are tired of incompetient judges.

Anonymous
Anonymous

I voted no for one of these four because I don't believe the judge is qualified to sit on the bench, not because of his or her name. And when people ask me about my experiences with judges, I share them, regardless of whether it is positive or negative. I'm actually a bit disappointed by this article. Surely someone can earn no votes all on their own, right? And the fact that their name happens to be of Hispanic origin has nothing to do with their lack of judicial competence. What about the other Hispanic judges on the ballot? There were more than these four, though I don't see any mention of their total votes.

1man1vote
1man1vote

It's because 500,000 votes are uncounted !

twrlrgrl25
twrlrgrl25

I voted No on Jose Padilla and it had nothing to do with his race! A judge in family court is supposed to be appointed to keep children safe and order a fair and unbaised judgement. Judge Padilla used his personal feelings when entering judgements. He said my daughter could "walk around the feces" at her fathers house because she was ambulatory now. He also said that drownings happen all the time in Arizona. I nearly lost my daughter in a drowning ,again due to her fathers negligence. He opened a parenting time case after hearing her dad admit he would test dirty on a drug test. He never petitioned for more parenting time , in fact hadn't even seen her in 6 months. I was standing before Judge Padilla to enforce drug testing. Judge Padilla earned a no vote. I am not the only one that has had compliants about this Judge. I have been in places having conversations with complete strangers that knew this Judge and had a negative experience. He has no place sitting on the bench.

godhatesdems
godhatesdems

No racism here, I voted no on all of them.

yourproductsucks
yourproductsucks

Although you are probably correct, Ray, I wonder if their poor marks had anything to do with the Commisioner and Attorney reviews each received.

 

If my memory serves me, Judge Padilla had some of the worst marks from both commisioners and attorneys who worked with him.  I know Flores and Contes and it was no surprise that they both received poor marks from their peers.  Connie Contes is one of the worst judges we currently have.

 

I guess that makes our commissioners and attorneys here in Maricopa County a bunch o' racists as well!

 

raystern
raystern

 @JoeArpaioFan Speaking of racism, here's what Joe Arpaio Fan wrote in a comment on October 26: 

 

"It has been reported that the suspects are black males.  One more reason why they should not be allowed in Tempe.  I'd rather have illegal aliens living in my neighborhood than black people."

 

I won't soon forget that comment, JAF.

robert_graham
robert_graham

 @1man1vote But many of those uncounted votes are likely to be fraud. Keep in mind that each and every one of them will be scrutinized with a fine tooth comb to ensure they are not fraudulent.  I say that at least 3/4 of those 500,000 votes are likely fraudulent. Go figure!

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