Tom Horne Probes Self with Help of Chief Deputy Rick Bistrow

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So what do you do when you have the FBI breathing down your neck (again), you've been ordered to give back $400,000 in illegal campaign contributions (again), and allegations of your using the Arizona Attorney General's Office as your re-election headquarters have been so well documented that both conservative U.S. Senator Jeff Flake and über-conservative U.S. Representative Matt Salmon (Republicans, like yourself) have asked for you to ditch your re-election effort?

If you're Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne, you pretend all is well, file your signatures to get on the ballot, ignore the plaintive cries of your employees for legal counsel, and put your chief deputy, Rick Bistrow, on the job, organizing a whitewash.

Last week, Arizona Republic reporter Yvonne Wingett Sanchez scored a fistful of e-mails from AG underlings begging for lawyers in the wake of allegations by ex-AG employee Sarah Beattie, which implicate Horne's executive staff in campaign work on state time.

The e-mails were sent around noon on May 8, after interviews with Beattie had appeared both on this blog and in the Arizona Capitol Times. About a week earlier, Beattie's resignation letter, which stated that Horne's office was "not following campaign laws," had been made public.

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Tom Horne's hatchet man, Chief Deputy Rick Bistrow

Sent to Horne's chief deputy, Eric "Rick" Bistrow, the e-mails from clearly concerned AG employees mirror each other and each contains the same opening line:

"Based on recent events, I am hereby formally requesting counsel be appointed me in the matter of Sarah Beattie claiming Campaign Finance & Elections Law Violations."

See also:
-Who Will Chop Off the Head of Tom Horne's Zombie-Like Campaign?

But the employees got the big brush-off. Stephanie Grisham, spokeswoman for the Attorney General's Office, followed up again on May 14, two days after Beattie's attorney, Tom Ryan, filed his client's affidavit and supporting documents with the Arizona Secretary of State's Office and the Arizona Citizens Clean Elections Commission.

"In light of these new developments," Grisham writes Bistrow in her second e-mail pertaining to this subject, "and the fact that I have to speak publicly to the press AND potential issues with directives from my boss going forward, may I have counsel?"

But these employees did not receive an official response until Sanchez did a records request for the e-mails, and the office was forced to release a statement, calling it "premature to provide counsel at the present time for AGO employees that have been mentioned in the affidavit. Only unsupported allegations have been made and it is unclear whether any employee, including the attorney general, is entitled to legal counsel."

Horne now is serving as his own attorney in the Beattie matter, ever since lawyer Dennis Wilenchik, a Horne supporter who employs Horne's mistress, ex-Assistant Attorney General Carmen Chenal, announced that he would be summering in Peru and the Galapagos Islands and would not be defending Horne.

In case you haven't seen it, on May 19, Wilenchik e-mailed the following to those involved:

After further review and consideration, and discussion with the Attorney General, I will not be representing him in either the Secretary of State matter or the Clean Elections matter from this date forward. Mr. Horne, it is my present understanding, will be representing himself in responding to both of your inquiries so you may deal with him directly. Thank you for you professional courtesy and cooperation extended to me previously.

Since I am headed to Peru and the Galapagos Islands through mid June starting this Wednesday I think I will be having the better time than working on this anyway. In any event, thanks again to all, and Mr. Horne is fully aware of your deadline of June 2nd and intends to comply with it. Have a wonderful summer (if there is such a thing here) and take care. There is no need to copy me on anything further with respect to this matter.

Good thing Horne has that Harvard Law degree, eh?


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31 comments
Steve Palermo
Steve Palermo

This is bad. If people catch on to probing themselves, your revenue from all those escorts ads might disappear.

Daniel Riley
Daniel Riley

If there's one thing the state GOP should have learned by now, it's that you don't mess with Tom Ryan.

Cozz
Cozz topcommenter

Fucking Horne, somebody please flush this piece of shit down the toilet.

Chuck Graf
Chuck Graf

Yeah, like this "investigation" will turn up anything. Utter nonsense.

Patrick Bohler
Patrick Bohler

Tom Horne Probes Self... HAHAHA! I just need the headline. That's perfect!

danzigsdaddy
danzigsdaddy topcommenter

I am quite sure Tom will do a very thorough job while looking into his own improprieties. he has proven himself to be a very ethical and honest person.............just ask the SEC or his wife or Carmen Chenal's (ex)-husband. you go get 'er done Elmer

dennis20
dennis20 topcommenter

Tom Horne investigation himself? Now what could go wrong? At least he is hiring. 

james8394
james8394

"Tom Horne Probes Self"......resist, resist, waaaayyyy too easy 

WhoKnows
WhoKnows topcommenter

Does Grisham change her underwear to prove she's working for the the campaign and not on the the taxpayers dime when she speaks out of both sides of her mouth during normal business hours?


She is the one that can be offered a deal to flip on TommiBoi, as she is doing campaign stuff most of the time these days!

TommyCollins
TommyCollins topcommenter

I will say this about Mr. Horne. He is certainly entertaining. Like the local shurf, just when you think there is nothing left to surprise, he comes up with something illogical, immoral, and/or unethical.

MaskedMagician1967
MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

Can anyone else see the gargantuan conflict of interest Horne has here?

I say let the OSC and the U.S. Attorney investigate.

Vizzini
Vizzini

Horne is probing himself?  Sounds like like that will be a thorough investigation.  What a joke of an AG. Time for this turd to be removed from office.

DNichols
DNichols

Corruption, wrong doing, (Law Breaking)  and illegal use of funds,covered with "White Wash" a.k.a. "Turd Polish", then pretending to be an innocent victom of all things around you, and acting like Mother Teressa?!

Arpaio has taught Horne the current  M.C.S.O. Sheriff's Tactics well.

Hornes_Mistress
Hornes_Mistress

Hornedog is serious.  He expects you to believe his lies.  I heard this little clip the other day when he got asked about hiring his mistress.  His answer was so damned funny, I can't believe he was for real.  Of course, he was on the Russell Pearce Show, so those racist assholes believe anything Horne says


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9iCZfDKOgqw 

shadeaux
shadeaux

Are these people serious?????


Only in Arizona could they do this with a straight face.

shadeaux
shadeaux

He ain't got Carmen anymore so I guess his only option is "probing" himself.



there went my appetite.

WhoKnows
WhoKnows topcommenter

I hope in the election, the voters say "HorniBoi, go 'probe' yourself!!"

DNichols
DNichols

@TommyCollins

Yup Horny is following in Arpaio's footsteps, he better watch for the crack in the sidewalk that kicked Arpaio's butt.

WhoKnows
WhoKnows topcommenter

@MaskedMagician1967 What hat is Grisham wearing ANYTIME she opens her mouth?  Is she doing her state job, or working for the HorniBoi Campaign?


Let the feds offer her a deal, as she knows the facts and will spill her guts on HorniBoi!

MaskedMagician1967
MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

Maybe it's the liberal education Harvard University grads get... Harvard is in Cambridge, MA Hornes....

Slappy
Slappy

@Hornes_Mistress :  Excellent find.  Demonstrates Horne's true nature. 


To Mr. Conservative, thank you for your question to Horne.  

TommyCollins
TommyCollins topcommenter

@shadeaux  I read that headline, several times, and thought, "Well I suppose if the old guy's batteries run down and he can no longer probe himself then he can hire this other guy to continue the probing. At some point, however, the probing could lead to a fatal reaction". It's probably best that they both end the probing.


Metaphorically speaking, we would NOT want the old guy harmed.

DNichols
DNichols

@shadeaux

I am sure Sheriff Babeu would be glad to take on this task.

TommyCollins
TommyCollins topcommenter

@DNichols  I wouldn't mind if the sidewalk reached up and whacked him again and put him out for the count. Not to hurt him, of course, but simply to keep him from ever going back to his bad job of acting like he gives a damn.

Slappy
Slappy

@Slappy @Hornes_Mistress Horne's  response to the Caller, was that he was using "offensive language." The Caller only said he did not like Horne using public funds to hire his mistress. The fact that Horne did hire his mistress, is in itself a gross abuse of power and highly offensive to the people of Arizona.


Tom Horne you are not a king.  

shadeaux
shadeaux

@TommyCollins,

Maybe the AGs office could use the help of some former MCSO staff. I"m sure Larry Fox and Joel Black have experience in the kind of probe the AG needs.

66rock
66rock topcommenter

@TommyCollins @DNichols  Who Arpaio?  If you're talking about him, I will say it out loud, I don't mind if he is hurt.  This is a guy who runs a jail where some have actually died under his leadership and others have suffered in 140 degree heat while the sheriff grins at the camera.  No, I don't mind if he feels a little pain at all to be honest. 

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