Tom Horne Testifies, Channels Bill Clinton
Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne looked so peaceful during his testimony Wednesday afternoon that if someone told me he'd done a bong hit during lunch, I'd have to consider the possibility.
It was a marked change from the rest of the hearing into his, um, alleged campaign finance shenanigans, which began on Monday and concluded earlier than expected at five o'clock Wednesday, making every reporter in the room happier than Kiwi siren Lorde at this year's Grammy Awards.
When not under oath in Administrative Law Judge Tammy Eigenheer's courtroom, Horne's demeanor was that of a man recovering from the removal of a yard of innards.
But when it came time to testify, it was like someone flipped a switch, and to each question from his attorney Michael Kimerer, Horne effortlessly exhaled a denial.
No, he never coordinated with his now-outreach director Kathleen Winn on the independent expenditure committee she was running during the 2010 general election, Business Leaders for Arizona.
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What about the deluge of phone calls between the two in October 2010, when Winn and Brian Murray, then of Lincoln Strategy Group, were collaborating on a TV ad attacking Horne's Democratic foe Felecia Rotellini?
Horne said he needed Winn's help with a real estate transaction, as he was selling one piece of property on 7th Avenue and McDowell Road for $1.35 million and buying another pricey lot at the same time.
This, though he already had a broker, Greg Tatham, husband to Horne's onetime public information officer Amy Rezzonico. Also, there's no paperwork to demonstrate that Winn, a mortgage loan officer at the time, had anything to do with the deal.
Horne admitted that "Kathleen had no formal role" in the transaction, and yet, during calls lasting eight, four and 11 minutes on October 20, 2010, when Winn was trading e-mails with Murray, finalizing the ad in question, Horne said he and Winn were talking about wrapping up the property swap.
Too bad there are no e-mails from back then documenting Winn's involvement. If there were, you can bet the defense would have submitted them as evidence.
There are e-mails to and from Horne, Tatham and others involved in the deal, but there are none to and from Winn regarding that transaction, she is not cc'd on the e-mails, and she is never mentioned in any of them.
Kimerer directly asked Horne if he and Winn ever discussed BLA's attack ad.
"I absolutely did not give any input in the ad," Horne declared. "We never talked about it...I'm absolutely certain. We knew we could not and we did not."