Statement of endorsement from Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery

Robert Graham

PHOENIX — ”With the exit of my friend, Tom Morrissey, from the race for Chairman of the Arizona Republican Party, I encourage fellow Republicans to unite behind the candidacy of Robert Graham for State Party Chair. I worked with Robert to defeat Proposition 121, the Open Primary Initiative, and am confident in his commitment to Republican Party principles and dedication to future Republican Party successes. Robert’s ability to work with members across our Party’s spectrum is critical to uniting fiscal and social conservatives for Arizona’s benefit now and in the future.”

About Robert Graham

Robert Graham is a conservative activist and AZ business leader. He was a leader in the fight against taxes and the destruction of our party system, successfully working with the grassroots to defeat propositions 121 and 204. Majority Leader David Gowan, Speaker Pro-Tempore JD Mesnard, Rep. Justin Olson, Rep. Steve Montenegro, Maricopa County Chairman Rob Haney, and numerous Arizona conservative leaders have endorsed Graham to lead the Arizona GOP. 

To learn more about Robert Graham and his plan for Arizona’s Republican Party, please visit his website at www.GrahamForArizona.com or his Facebook page. 

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County Attorney Bill Montgomery Calls On Kyrsten Sinema to Release Client List

“Kyrsten Protects Criminals, Vernon Protects Families” 

Phoenix, AZ – Maricopa County‘s top law enforcement officer, County Attorney Bill Montgomery, is demanding that Democratic Congressional candidate Kyrsten Sinema support her claim to having been a criminal defense attorney and reveal which cases she worked on.  Over the course of her career, Sinema has claimed to have worked for murderers and other violent criminals but refuses to say which ones.

In a 2006 interview, Kyrsten Sinema boasted about her work as a “criminal defense attorney who represents murderers.”    Shawn Macomber, “The Marginalized Mainstream,” The American Spectator, June 14, 2006.

Montgomery is joining Vernon Parker and the entire Arizona Republican Party in demanding Sinema release her client list to support her claims and reveal just who she stands with.

“Democrat Kyrsten Sinema claims to have made a career out of protecting criminals.  She shouldn’t hide who she has defended now just because she is running for office.  Arizona families deserve to know the whole truth so why is Sinema keeping who she claims to have defended a secret.  Vernon Parker has the support of national victims rights groups because he is committed to protecting law-abiding citizens.  I look forward to working with him when he gets to Congress,” said Bill Montgomery, Maricopa County Attorney.

*On Wednesday, the National Organization of Victims of Juvenile Lifers spoke out against Kyrsten Sinema’s “extreme and alarming record on victim’s rights” and gave their support to Vernon Parker.  

Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery Endorses Wendy Rogers

The campaign for Wendy Rogers released the following statement by Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery:

“We live in troubling times. Skyrocketing debt, out-of-control spending, high taxes, terrorism, a porous border, and a growing dislike and disdain for our federal government. The only way to right the ship of state in Washington is by sending someone there who will apply sound principles of leadership with honesty and integrity.

We need someone who will lead for Arizona and who will put the interests of Arizonans first and not that of Washington lobbyists and special interests.

That’s why I am supporting Wendy Rogers for Congress in the 9th District.

Wendy has integrity – something that is lacking far too often in Congress. Her word is her bond and she follows through.

Wendy served 20 years in our military – she fought for our country nearly half her career overseas as one of the Air Force’s first woman pilots and she will fight for our new Congressional District 9 in Washington. Wendy is part of a legacy of service dating back five generations to include her father who commanded an infantry platoon in WWII, an infantry company during the Korean War, and a tank battalion during the Cold War in Europe, holding in check the forces of Communism.

Wendy is conservative. She is the only start-up business owner in District 9 and, in meeting a payroll, understands firsthand how brutal regulations can be to small business owners. She is a wife of 34 years and mother of two. Wendy is Pro Life, recognizing and respecting the inherent dignity andvalue in every human life. She will repeal Obamacare and insist on free market principles and protect the integrity of the physician-patient relationship in addressing the needs of our health care system. She is against bailouts and wasteful spending and will not mortgage the hopes and dreams of future generations to satisfy a bloated federal government today.

Bottom line – if you are a conservative like me in District 9 and you want to send a conservative to Congress whom we can trust, the only choice is Lt Col Wendy Rogers.”

– Bill Montgomery

Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery Concludes Fiesta Bowl Probe, Issues Recommendations

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 21, 2011
CONTACT: Jerry Cobb

PHOENIX, AZ (December 21, 2011) – Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery announced the conclusion of an 8-month criminal investigation into whether public officials illegally accepted or failed to report gifts from members of the Fiesta Bowl organization and its representatives. While the investigation did not find evidence leading to criminal liability for those investigated, it did identify areas where Arizona law does not meet legitimate public expectations for transparency in disclosure of the receipt of gifts.

“Despite the public’s legitimate expectations that current laws ensure a reasonable degree of open and honest government, Arizona’s statutes governing receipt of gifts and reporting requirements fall short of meeting those expectations,” Montgomery said. “A combination of inconsistent laws, vague reporting requirements, and a ‘knowing’ standard of conduct created significant hurdles for our investigation in establishing the required mental state to prove criminal liability,” he added.

As a consequence of the difficulties encountered in conducting the investigation, the County Attorney will make the following recommendations to both houses in the State Legislature:

  • Create a single reference point in law for lobbyists and legislators that clarifies what, if any, types of gifts are permissible, and establishes consistent definitions of gifts and items that require disclosure.
  • Establish an outright ban on gifts, or a minimum value threshold above which reporting and disclosure is mandatory for anything received above the set value (e.g. $25).
  • Establish an increased frequency of reporting, no less than quarterly, to eliminate record-keeping, memory and accuracy issues that can arise with annual reporting requirements. A web-based reporting system is also recommended to facilitate the public’s ability to review officials’ disclosures.
  • Adjust penalties for violations of reporting requirements, making “knowing and intentional” violations a felony offense instead of a misdemeanor.
  • Establish a “reckless” standard that carries misdemeanor or civil penalties that are significant enough to encourage accurate and timely reporting.
  • Remove legislative staff attorneys from the role of providing campaign finance disclosure recommendations, training and advice in order to preclude any claim of attorney-client privilege on these matters.
  • Amend lobbying disclosure forms to include a certification of having read the instructions, as required on campaign finance disclosure statements. Add an expenditure reporting category for Principals/Public Bodies to the Principal/Public Body Annual Report of Lobbying Expenditures.

“I trust that members of the legislature sharing my concern for upholding the integrity of our respective offices will address these recommendations in an appropriate manner,” Montgomery said.

The County Attorney’s Office began its investigation in April 2011, after receiving the case from the Arizona Attorney General’s Office which had declared a conflict of interest in the matter. Over the course of the investigation, a team of experienced prosecutors and investigators from the County Attorney’s Office reviewed thousands of pages of documents and conducted interviews with multiple legislators, lobbyists and Fiesta Bowl employees. The investigation looked at 28 legislators and 3 non-legislator elected office holders. The Attorney General also declared a conflict on two Fiesta Bowl-related cases involving three lobbyists, which also became part of the County Attorney’s investigation.

Legislators investigated:

  • Paula Aboud
  • Chad Campbell
  • Linda Lopez
  • Russell Pearce
  • Kirk Adams
  • Rich Crandall
  • David Lujan
  • Gary Pierce
  • Linda Aguirre
  • Sam Crump
  • Lucy Mason
  • Michelle Reagan
  • Ken Bennett
  • Adam Driggs
  • John McComish
  • Pete Rios
  • Robert Blendu
  • Steve Gallardo
  • Robert Meza
  • Andrew Tobin
  • David Bradley
  • Laurin Hendrix
  • John Nelson
  • Steve Tully
  • Bob Burns
  • John Kavanagh
  • Ward Nichols
  • Thayer Verschoor

Non-legislator elected officials investigated:

  • Joe Arpaio
  • Ben Arrendondo
  • Elaine Scruggs

Lobbyists investigated:

  • Charles Coughlin and Doug Cole as part of the lobbying firm, “HighGround”
  • Kevin Demenna

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Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery Endorses Wes Gullett for Mayor

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 14, 2011
CONTACT: Daniel Scarpinato

“Wes Gullett understands the issues facing law enforcement.”

PHOENIX – Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery is endorsing Wes Gullett for Mayor, joining a growing coalition committed to reforming Phoenix city government.

“Wes Gullett understands the issues facing law enforcement. He’ll help us rigorously enforce the law and be a partner in keeping Phoenix safe from gangs and drug cartels,” Montgomery said. “Please join me in supporting Wes Gullett for Mayor.”

“I’m thrilled to have the support of Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery. He’s been a leader in prosecuting criminals and keeping our community safe. I look forward to partnering with him to keep Phoenix residents safe,” Gullett said.

Gullett has spoken at length about the need to keep Phoenix safe and support law enforcement. In particular, he has pledged to finally begin the process of hiring a police chief.

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Charges Against Rachel Alexander Are Bogus & Embarrass Arizona Legal Community

By David Roney (originally posted on Lighthouse Blog)

Former Deputy Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Alexander faces disciplinary action for following orders from her boss, former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas. Whether or not you agree or disagree with Thomas’ office’s allegations against some of the county supervisors is irrelevant. The issue here is what appears to be nothing short of a political assassination of a dedicated employee and public servant in Alexander. Others who also worked on the racketeering suit have had no such allegations made against them, interestingly.

According the the Arizona Republic, “Alexander is charged with seven ethical violations stemming from her work on the racketeering suit. Charges include using means to burden or embarrass, filing and asserting a frivolous proceeding, and disobeying an obligation under the rules of a tribunal.”

Most of the above ethics charges stem from Alexander following orders from her boss. As a Maricopa County Attorney’s Office employee, anyone would and should feel comfortable that their boss, the duly elected County Attorney, was following the law, and that what he was directing his employee to do was legal. He was the county’s highest ranking lawyer, after all. So of course, if one is asked to file paperwork and pursue a case, an employee would do so, even if she objected. It was her job.

Alexander is being charged, despite a long, unblemished record at MCAO, solely for her role working on the RICO case. What was her role? She worked under her supervisor Pete Spaw’s direction. Shaw was an experienced RICO attorney who, according to my sources, started the drafts of the pleadings, finalized the drafts of the pleadings with Andrew Thomas, and developed the key theories in them. He exclusively dealt with opposing counsel, and filed all of the pleadings electronically. Alexander’s role consisted of mostly research for the pleadings, and taking direction from Spaw, nothing further. Yet Spaw was not charged by the Bar, only Alexander.

The “filing, asserting, & disobeying an obligation” charges are mostly just there for the purpose of piling on. The real issue here is the allegation that Alexander sought to burden and embarrass county supervisors. The allegation is nothing short of hilarious on its face, if anyone has ever heard or read a statement from Mary Rose Wilcox, or followed the Brock sex-scandal case, or followed the new court house boondoggle. The supervisors, with a few exceptions, have done a pretty good job of bringing poor press and embarrassment upon themselves. And they did so all without the help of Alexander.

But digging deeper, the charges against Alexander reek of fulfilling a vendetta for running a political blog, and a conservative one at that. Most of their unfettered discontent comes from blog posts they attribute to Alexander, that she in fact did not write. The Arizona State Bar is anything but a right-leaning organization, and it appears to seek to censor a person with whom they disagree, while leaving others untouched.

As Alexander’s attorney, Scott Zwillinger, says, “She was simply one lawyer of several assigned to a controversial matter, but unfortunately for her, she is the one now fighting for her career.”

Alexander will hopefully prevail in this matter, but the tragedy will remain that the Arizona State Bar used it’s power to try to silence a grass-roots activist with whom they have political disagreements. Arizona is not being served well in this, and its legal community is being embarrassed. And, of course, political blogging isn’t going anywhere…

And in case you’re wondering, here is Interrogatory that specifically targets Rachel Alexander for blogging.