Who Will Chop Off the Head of Tom Horne's Zombie-Like Campaign?
New Times Illustration
As Tom Horne's zombie-like re-election campaign staggers forth, a question remains: Who will chop off its head?
Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne's bizarre relationship with women is best described by ex-AG staffer Sarah Beattie, the 26-year-old who has deluged both state and federal authorities with physical evidence demonstrating that Horne and his executive staff have campaigned on state time.
Sitting in the office of her attorney, Tom Ryan, she confides a conversation she had with Horne while still working at the AG's Office.
"Tom Horne once said to me, 'I would love to be [a member of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter-day Saints],'" she explains to New Times, referring to the infamous polygamous sect once headed by imprisoned child rapist Warren Jeffs.
In reply to the AG's creepy remark, Beattie repeated to Horne a comment she'd heard her dad make about a "sister wives" reality TV show depicting a polygamous family's home life.
"I told Tom Horne that my dad said, 'Can you imagine anything more awful than five wives yelling at you constantly?'" recalls Beattie.
"And Tom goes, 'I can imagine nothing better.'"
The story rings true for a man who surrounds himself with female surrogates whom he expects to do his bidding, like compliant fembots following Dr. Evil's orders in an Austin Powers film.
Some seem content to play that role, like former Assistant Attorney General Carmen Chenal.
Horne first hired Chenal for a position she was unqualified for at the Arizona Department of Education, while Horne was the state's Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Later, as AG-elect, Horne helped Chenal, who'd been suspended by the State Bar of Arizona, get her law license reinstated.
Horne then hired her to another position many felt she was unqualified for, this time at the AG's Office.
Chenal never has denied being Horne's mistress. Nor has Horne, who is married, denied an affair with the Cuban-American divorcee.
Chenal now works at the law office of Dennis Wilenchik, a political supporter of Horne's, whose firm has taken cases assigned to it by the AG's Office.
Some of the material that Beattie has made public shows that Chenal remains deeply involved in Horne's political work, scouting Molina Fine Jewelers as a possible location for a campaign event (and trying on an $8 million ring in the process) or discussing via e-mail such details as the biscotti to be included in gift bags handed out at fundraisers.
Not that you have to be romantically involved with Horne to drink the proverbial Kool-Aid, play compliant female, and join an ersatz political harem stocked with Stepford wives.
Beattie certainly bucked any such expectations that she would do the fembot bit.
Hired by Horne's outreach director, Kathleen Winn, in August 2013, Beattie explains how she did campaign work on state time as Winn's underling.
Beattie was promoted to Horne's executive staff after about a month and a half on the job and tasked with raising money for his re-election campaign, something she'd done for other Arizona Republicans.
Horne gave her the veritable keys to his kingdom: access to a white, three-ring binder intentionally mislabeled "Border Patrol." It contains a list of Horne donors — in categories such as Fortune 500 executives and attorneys — past and prospective.
Horne kept the binder in the AG's Office. Beattie would fetch it whenever she needed it. She claims she watched Horne solicit donations from it himself while he was in his AG office.