Archives for January 2007

Housekeeping note.

This blog has a spam filter that usually does a pretty good job of capturing spam and letting legitimate comments through. We got a little behind on checking the spam folder and several comments were mistakenly stuck there. They have now been posted.

We do apologize for the inconvenience. (Things have been a little busy lately.)

Nathan Sproul Responds

Early this morning, I received the following response from Nathan Sproul. Unfortunately, I did not have time to post it until this evening and only after I confirmed with Nathan that he still wanted his response presented.

After I post this, I will have more to say…

DSW

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Shane,

Your website is not posting my comments. They may be too long for what you guys have set up to accept, but I expect this posted in its entirety.

Nathan 

I have to say that this is a new low. For the record, all three stories that you cite are false. I appreciate my defenders as well, but I think the explanation below is adequate. So, please refrain from defending me. I don’t want this to get out of hand, which clearly it has the potential to do.

Here are the facts about the sources you cite:

Mark Crispin Miller wrote the article for the Baltimore Chronicle. Tucson’s parallel liberal magazine would be the Tucson Weekly. He is a professor of Cultural Studies at NYU. He also wrote a book Fooled Again: How the Right Stole the 2004 Election. You guessed it. I get 20 some pages. With the exception of Arianna Huffington and now Sonoran Alliance, just about everyone has dismissed his book as wild-eyed conspiracy theories. Not exactly the type of person a conservative blog should use as a credibility source. His book did influence Robert Kennedy Jr. to write a large article for Rolling Stone magazine. I am currently in the process of having the magazine framed. We get mentioned early and often.

Speaking of a non-credible source, let’s talk about Blog For Arizona for a moment  http://arizona.typepad.com/blog/2006/07/nathan_sprouls_.html. According to them, I run the Franklin Charter Schools. They get Ben Franklin charter schools and Franklin Arts Academy mixed up but why should we worry about little details like that? For your information, I don’t run any charter schools. The rest of the story gets some things right. I did make the political contributions they report although those are now out-dated. I did work for Voyager and I did work with the RNC to do voter registration work. There conclusions on every single subject are simply false.

Finally, the Pittsburgh Gazette story gets into the whole question of whether Nathan Sproul committed voter fraud. These allegations were first made by non other than Ted Kennedy and Terry McAuliffe three weeks from a Presidential election that everyone expected to be decided by a very thin margin. They were trying to create a paper trail for contesting a NATIONAL election. Do you have any idea what stunts they were willing to pull to do that? For starters, my wife and I received death threats. Yes, death threats. Robert Kennedy Jr. gave out my office phone number on national radio and encouraged his readers to call my office. Needless to say, they didn’t say nice things. Daily Kos plastered it everywhere. They called it the “Smoking Gun.” Moveon.org started holding press conferences in states where we didn’t even work claiming that we did it. I have the web page from a Democrat in Minnesota who infiltrated our operation after hearing the first story about it. He bragged that even though we gave him meticulous rules to follow that he lied to the newspaper reporter and the reporter believed him.

Three different states investigated the accusations of Kennedy. Two of them, including Arizona, were conducted by Democrat AG’s. the Department of Justice opened an inquiry. ALL and I mean ALL of those investigations were found to be without substance and have been dismissed.

Those are the facts surrounding the three links you maliciously posted. On the other hand, I have posted the letter that I first wrote to Randy Pullen and later sent to State Committeemen. Unlike the writers of this blog, I put my name on it. Randy Pullen in a public forum claimed that he “helped raise over $2 million for the AZGOP.” I was Executive Director of the AZGOP in 2000. Randy volunteered to be Co-Chair of the Finance Committee, attended two meetings and wrote a check for $1,000. All of those things were helpful. However, he did nothing more. In his email reply to me which I have included with this post, he admits to playing a minor role in the fundraising. He claims he made calls to help. I don’t remember him making any calls and if he did, he was remarkeably unsuccessful.

I would not have written to disagree with him if he had simply said that he helped raise money or that he volunteered to be Co-Chair. That isn’t what he said. He said he “helped raise over $2 million…” By any reasonable understanding, he was claiming to be very involved in raising a significant amount of money. He wasn’t. I pointed that out in a very factual way.

If someone came to work for me and greatly exaggerated their resume to get the job, they would be fired. By inserting the $2 million figure, he was clearly trying to demonstrate fundraising prowess that he does not have. He has never been successful at raising money, so he wanted to make his accomplishment sound much much better than it really was.

Below is the correspondence. Frankly, you should all be more than a little ashamed. This is unseemly and irresponsible of you. If you keep this post up, you are now keeping on your website information that you know to be false.

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Dear State Committee Member:

I believe it is important to share with you an email correspondence I have had with Randy Pullen. This email is one of the many reasons why I can’t support Randy Pullen for AZGOP Chairman. For those of you who don’t know me, I served as Executive Director of the Arizona Republican Party from 1999-2002. I have run my own political consulting company since 2003 and have worked for well over 100 clients in 23 states. My consulting company is 100% Republican. I have had the distinct honor of working on the campaigns of many good Republicans including Trent Franks, Andy Thomas, and Len Munsil.

I was troubled this morning when I read www.espressopundit.com and saw Randy Pullen’s response to a simple question. He was asked why he financially supported Democrat candidates Harry Mitchell and Paul Johnson against two Republican candidates in a partisan race. One race was for State Senate and one was Governor. Instead of admitting that he made a mistake, he used two excuses to minimize the contributions.

1) He was a lobbyist and that is just the way it is done.

2) He has raised so much for Republicans that these contributions “pale in comparison.”

I guess the Republicans who endorsed Janet Napolitano over Len Munsil could have said that their endorsement of Napolitano “pales in comparison” to all the endorsements they have made for Republicans.

However, the fact that was most troubling to me was his claim that he “helped raise over $2,000,000” for the AZGOP in 2000 as Co-Chair of the Finance Committee. I was Executive Director for the AZGOP in 2000, so I knew from first-hand experience that his claim was demonstrably false. I have attached our email correspondence from today. Randy Pullen’s response is stunning. He admits that he played a very minor role in fundraising in 2000. Yet, in his public response on espressopundit and in many emails that I have seen, he claims that he “helped raise over $2,000,000” for the AZGOP. By that logic, Al Gore helped invent the internet and Janet Napolitano helped cut taxes and secure the border.

It is true that Randy Pullen volunteered to become Co-Finance Chairman. It is also true that he attended two meetings and wrote a $1,000 check. Beyond that, I don’t know of one dollar that came into the State Party because of Randy Pullen. But, in his public comments he wants people to believe that he was a central figure in raising $2,000,000. He simply didn’t do what he claims.

I know from working at the Party for three years that you don’t “help” raise money. You either do it or you don’t.

Randy Pullen doesn’t have a track record of raising money. That is troubling enough. But, what is far more troubling is that Randy Pullen seems willing to mislead the State Committee into believing that he is something that he isn’t. How many more misrepresentations from Randy Pullen are out there?

The job of State Chairman is too important. Please don’t vote for someone who appears willing to misrepresent himself. As I said in my letter to Randy, if we can’t trust him to shoot straight with us now, how can we trust him to shoot straight with us if he becomes Chairman?

Nathan Sproul
Sproul and Associates

Money Talks.

     Just got this letter from Jim Click in the mail today. I was trying to lay low and not write any more about the race for state chairman but these letter keep coming. This one reminds me of the time in 2004 when John Kerry talked about all the world leaders that he had met with who told him they did not support Bush. If they felt strongly about that then they could have said it in public or maybe Kerry could have given us some of the names. Same goes for Click and his reference to people who will not donate if Randy is chairman.

     This letter is less of an attack and more about extortion. I think it is likely to backfire on Lisa more than anything. Graf may have lost the election but a lot of his supporters are state delegates. They remember the last time Click really got behind a candidate.

 

On Saturday, January 27th, our Arizona Republican Party will be faced with a very important decision. We will be electing a new Chairman. This is one of the most important Chairman elections in quite some time. In my opinion, the choice is clear. Lisa James has the experience and know-how to be an excellent Chairman. I am thriller that we have someone of her caliber willing to run.

Some have said that it doesn’t really matter who the Chairman is. Contributions will continue to flow into the Party. I can tell you from firsthand experience that it is not easy raising money for the Republican Party. Over the years, I have raised millions of dollars for the Republican Party and Republican candidates. When I raise money for the Party, it is important that the Chairman is someone donors trust to make good decisions with their money.

While I will support the Republican Party no matter who wins on January 27th, I feel obligated to tell you that most of the donors I am talking to won’t. It will be dramatically more difficult to raise money if Randy Pullen is elected as Chairman. Many of his public comments have donors worried. For example, he wrote a guest column for the Arizona Republic on March 7, 2004 where he said President Bush and Congressman Jeff Flake were making “deliberate attempts to mislead the American public.” That kind of comment does not fill potential donors with confidence in his leadership.

When you cast your vote for Chairman, please vote for the person who has the ability to bring the grassroots and donor communities together. We need both to have a successful State Party. Thank you for everything you do to make our state and nation great.

 

Sincerely, Jim Click

Q & A with Lisa James

On Tuesday, I asked each candidate for State Chairman if they wouldn’t mind answering a few questions regarding their race. Many of the questions have been making the rounds among GOP activists so I thought it only appropriate to facilitate a little Q&A here at Sonoran Alliance.

Here are the questions asked of Lisa James and her unedited responses:

SA: Why are you running for State Chairman? Did anyone prompt you to run?
 
LJ: Having worked for Republicans in both a paid and volunteer capacity for more than 20 years, I feel that Party Chairman is the next step in my service to the Republican Party.  Politics is my passion and I want to build on my past experience to unite our Party and achieve Victory in ’08.

I was humbled when approached by many from all levels of our party to run for Chairman.  Volunteers asked.  Precinct Committeemen asked.  Donors asked.  Congressman Shadegg also called me.  
 
SA: Which candidate/campaign do you consider your greatest success?
 
LJ: Serving as Executive Director of the Bush/Cheney ’04 campaign in Arizona was an incredible experience.  We brought together thousands of volunteers to man booths, register voters, dial phones, email voters, attend the two most successful political rallies in Arizona history (Bank One Ballpark Debate Watch Party–45,000 + attendees and Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum–16,000 +  attendees), and almost double the margin of victory from the 2000 campaign.  This is what we need to duplicate for the Party and preparing for another Presidential election is a great opportunity to get voters excited about being a Republican and participating in the political system.
 
SA: Which has been your greatest political disappointment?
 
LJ: The election of Bill Clinton in 1992.

SA: How comfortable are you in raising money among major donors? grassroots donors?
 
LJ: I am extremely comfortable raising money from both major and grassroots donors.  Every dollar is important and the dollar from a senior citizen on a fixed income is just as important as the 5 figure checks from major donors.  We should provide opportunity to give at all levels.  I look forward to making everyone feel comfortable with their decision to give money to the Party.  They should know it will be spent effectively.
 
I am also comfortable with asking people to give of their time and talents–just ask any of my friends and neighbors or anyone who might have a minute to spare.  Someone took a week off of work to volunteer for the Bush campaign in ’04 and the before the week was over she took a leave to stay the final 6 weeks of the campaign–full time volunteer.  Others may have only an hour to give, or a morning to walk, or a knack for decorating offices or preparing for events.  There is plenty of work to be done–and I won’t ask anyone to do anything I have not done or will not do myself.
 
SA: What is your vision for the Arizona GOP for the next four years?
 
LJ: The Arizona Party should focus on doing four things to build and unite:
1)  Recruit and train grassroots volunteers and precinct committeemen
2)  Recruit and train candidates at all levels
3)  Raise dollars in off years to prepare for election years and to avoid taking dollars from our candidates in election years
4)  FOCUS on winning elections and encouraging Republicans by reminding people that we are the party of small government, lower taxes, personal responsibility.
 
SA: How do you see your role between social factions in the party?
 
LJ: The Republican Party has a platform in which I believe.   I am who most would consider extremely conservative.  However, it takes ALL Republicans to win on election day.  We need every vote.  The Republican Party has the responsibility to turn out all Republicans to make sure the winners of our primary and our Presidential nominee remain winners in November.
 
SA: Do you support the Republican Party Platform as it is currently is written?
 
LJ: Yes—though for the party of less government, it sure is lengthy.
 
SA: The 2006 Election cycle was tough on Republicans. What will you do differently in 2008?
 
LJ: It was a tough year for Republicans across the Nation and Arizona was no exception.  In general terms, I would like to see greater communication at all levels of our party–from counties to the state, state to counties, candidates to the Party and Party to the candidates.  While we point out what is wrong with our Democrat opponents (and not each other) we must also give a reason to come home to our Grand Old Party–smaller government, lower taxes, personal freedom and responsibility.
 
SA: If elected State Chairman, how will you be able to avoid conflicts of interest with your public relations business?
 
LJ: My work for our Public Relations business is part time and is as an officer of our company.  I have taken leaves of absence in the past and if necessary this can be done again.  They have survived when I have given birth, survived when I chose to stay home as a full-time mom and survived when I have worked full-time on the BC’04 campaign and as Victory ’06 Director.  We have a great team at GCJPR and I have full confidence that they will continue to provide quality work while I am serving as Chairman.  They are a second family for me and have been extremely supportive of this endeavor.
 
SA: Will you be able to remain objective and fair as Presidential candidates come to Arizona? Will Senator McCain get special treatment?
 
LJ: The job of the Chairman, and of the Party, is to showcase ALL of our Republican Presidential candidates.  Our voters need as much information as possible to make an informed decision in our Presidential primary.  All of our Republican candidates will get special treatment.
 
SA: Given Gordon James’ position on the executive board of China Mist and China Mist’s public support of Planned Parenthood why shouldn’t social conservatives be concerned?
 
LJ: Gordon James is not running for Chairman of the Arizona Republican Party–his wife is and is doing so with his full support as well as the full support of Emily, Charlie, Maddie and Olivia James–my four children.  I am 100% pro-life and have been since a child.   This election is about my record and I am pleased to have the support of many leaders in the pro-life community including (but not limited to) Len Munsil, Joe Cavanaugh, and Congressman Trent Franks.
 
 

 

Who let the (attack) dogs out?

It is official now, Nathan Sproul has been unleashed. If you receive a letter from Nathan attacking a fellow Republican please consider the source.

Here is some information on who Nathan is.

http://baltimorechronicle.com/070505Miller-Irmus.shtml

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/04294/398767.stm

http://arizona.typepad.com/blog/2006/07/nathan_sprouls_.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pk_eR-Af8pA

Damn The Torpedos – Full Steam Ahead!

I have to give Senator McCain credit when he due – like yesterday when he asked all the right questions of General David Petreus about sending moore troops to Iraq. The Senator was right on the mark and gave the good general an opportunity to give an unvarnished reality check to the other members of the committee.

But as sure as he had ordered a “full speed ahead” during the committee hearing, all his sails lost their wind as Arizona’s senior senator was caught napping on camera during the heart of the President’s State of the Union address. And they say President Reagan was notorious for napping during cabinet meetings.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WkkTFVIxMQs

Treasurer’s race update.

Turns out that Timothy Lee does have a site for his campaign for treasurer.

Another Straw Poll?

Sonoran Alliance is asking whether or not another presidential straw poll will be conducted at this Saturday’s State GOP meeting.

As reported earlier this month, Sonoran Alliance was first to break the story of the Maricopa GOP straw poll results. Readers should note that the story brought national attention to our senior senator and other lesser-know Republican candidates.

This weekend, we hope to report on any results from all state committeemen. We ask that all state committemen participate and cast only one vote. 

District 17 lost to the Democrats over $100.

lknaperek.jpgI just received a letter from Laura Knaperek in support of Lisa James. Laura spends very little time giving us a reason to vote for Lisa and quickly gets into the sad story of the Republican’s loss of district 17. As Laura would have you believe a $100 dollar donation by Randy Pullen from 9 years ago is the reason Democrats now control the district. That is a very contorted theory. I wonder how Laura explains the losses in Districts 24 and 26, especially since Randy had little to no involvement. Knaperek conveniently forgets to mention these other setbacks that the party experienced in 2006. I was surprised that she did not find a way to also blame Randy for the loss of the U.S. House and Senate. Laura fails to mention the $2,305 that Pullen has given to the Pima, Yavapai, and Maricopa County Republican Committees. Knaperek is listed on the Secretary of State’s web site as having given a whopping $100 to Maricopa and nothing to Pima or Yavapai. Gee, thanks Laura.

In the letter Laura mentions Harry Mitchell’s name 7 times. I thought for a second that I was getting a letter from the Democrats. Mitchell has done very well for himself in the political arena. And to think that it was all from a $100 donation back in the last century.

Of course Knaperek’s charge the Pullen is at fault is absurd on the face but it does illustrate the desperate tactics that some are willing to employ.

(This story has been slightly modified. Our intent was to expose Knaperek’s gutter tactics and not to impugn either of the candidates for chairman.)

State GOP Chairman’s Race – Entrance Polling – Updated January 22nd

Well we finally have some updates to the State GOP Chairman candidates’ websites and that means that we can update our scoreboard.

More specifically, Randy Pullen has updated his website while Lisa James’ website hasn’t been updated since we don’t know when. If she’s sitting on a pile of endorsements, she has clearly decided on the unusual practice of showing weakness rather than strength!

For those who do now know how this works, we are offering polling based on the endorsements claimed by both campaigns. The winner will need approximately 419 votes to win. How is the data compiled? Well, we do it as follows:

1. Start with the list of endorsements provided by both campaigns. No, not the entire list of everyone who claims to be a supporter, but just the names of people who are also State Committeemen.
2. When a husband and wife are both State Committeemen and only one appears as an endorsement while the other does not, we assume that the spouse WILL vote for the same candidate.
3. Where both candidates claim the endorsement of the same person, we try to contact that person and determine who they are actually supporting.

As of Monday, January 22nd, the vote count stands as follows:

Randy Pullen – 366 of which 2 are questionable

Lisa James – 132 of which 2 are questionable

Unclaimed – 343

Both candidates claim the support of the same 5 people, but Pullen has the signatures of 2 on support cards while a third person tells West Washington that he did not tell Lisa he was supporting her and that he is supporting Pullen. The other two were unable to be reached, so we have left their 2 votes on BOTH vote counts.

Pullen’s growth seemed to come equally from rural and metro counties. This could be a factor of his strong early support from within Maricopa and Pima counties, or it could be an indication that he has been focusing his efforts on the rural counties. He has picked up quite a few votes from southern Arizona where illegal immigration and border security is a larger issue.

Again, if either campaign wishes to update this scoreboard, simply update your list of public supporters on your websites and we’ll update our scoreboard as well. Stay tuned for more updates from West Washington!