Three great guys running for Corporation Commission

Received this email about 3 guys running on a slate for Corp. Comm. –

Their names are Rick Fowlkes, Keith Swapp and Joe Hobbs, a Republican team for the ACC. Their website is Each has an engineering background and each has expertise in a critical area of work for the ACC. Compare them to the usual field of career politicians who are looking for their next promotion and its an easy choice to make. The work the ACC does is serious business and we need qualified folks to ensure that it is done right. If you care about Arizona’s utilities infrastructure, telecommunications systems, water supply and quality, and a host of other issues, please take a moment to visit their website, learn about them, and sign up. They will be hosting an online fundraiser on February 29th (Leap Day) and it looks like it will be fun and quite different from the usual event.

The email didn’t mention that these candidates are libertarian-leaning, which would be good for an over-regulating agency like the Corp. Commission.


  1. Don’t hear a lot about these races, but you think we would given how important little things like water, power and phones are. Thanks for the heads up!

  2. Fowlkes has been running unsuccessfully for the ACC as a Libertarian since 1988 (twenty years). His running mates are not on record on any issue and their website says they are running as the “pro-life team.” Republicans need to know that Fowlkes is on record opposing making the presence of illegals in the US a felony, opposing informed consent for abortions, opposing amending the US Constitution to define marriage as the union of one man/one woman, opposing prohibiting human cloning, in support of legalizing physician assisted suicide, and in support of allowing use of the metricula consular card as a form of valid ID.

  3. Scrupulous, exhumed says

    Someone might also tell them that you can’t legally run as a “team” or a “slate” in Arizona, what with all the rules about what campaign committees can NOT do with their funds, like give them to another campaign committee, like for a “joint” mailer or printing of signs. If you could, you’d be able to easily get around the donation limits.

  4. Hmm, it would seem that if your website laid out your positions on issues, then you WOULD be on record on those issues.

    And Scrupulous seems to have lost his scruples with his post. Plenty of candidates run together and share signs and mailings. Plus, they seem to be running as Clean Elections candidates, so I’m not sure that there are any donation limits to “get around”?

  5. Scrupulous, exhumed says

    All I’m saying is that the financial mechanics of slates are fraught with peril, CCEC or no CCEC. We won’t know for sure until there’s a complaint, an investigation, and an outcome that may or may not hold up in court (like David Burnell Smith). There are ways to share resources that people have been getting away with; I’m just putting it out there that it’s a possible problem.

  6. John is right on the campaign finance rules. Lots of legislative campaigns are team campaigns and they put their names on mailers and signs. I know that Karen Johnson, Russell Pearce and Mark Anderson have run as a team just exactly that way in LD18.

  7. Scrupulous, exhumed says

    I’m not arguing the tradition, I’m just saying be careful when running as a team. You have enemies you don’t even know about yet, and they will likely only emerge if you become a real threat. For example, don’t have two committees pay the third and then have the third pay the full amount for the signs. Have each pay 1/3 of the bill directly.

    If you can tell me why a car is twice as likely as a motorcycle to get a flat tire, then you’ll have figured out the logic.

    The other intellectual problem is I can see is that it’s fine for senators and house members to run as a slate, as they have different jobs, but the ACC was recently expanded from 3 to 5, and what the heck good is it that reform if it just means three chums from one county can run together and win?

    Having one or two legislators in your pocket does you precious little good. But if you are a utility and you control the majority of the ACC, well…

  8. nightcrawler says

    Exhumed makes many valid points. Elections are indeed fraught with risk. Down is up and up is down. The smallest infraction can blow up on a candidate. Three cooks in the kitchen may indeed spoil the soup.

    All three fellows seem to be good chaps, I have been fortunate to speak with two of them.

    The notion of efficiency versus perceived collusion is not far fetched. Remember in politics it is the perception, not the reality that matters. I believe all three chaps are honest and with good intention. They do need to differentiate themselves somewhat to avoid the appearance of block access. Perhaps that Catholic questionnaire is a good start.

  9. I understand that they’re running against another team of three legislators? Now what, we have to choose from two teams? That will be interesting, I mean, I assume that individual members of each team will have flaws in their positions, so do we pick the overall team we like best? Or do we pick individual members from each team and force them to work together?

  10. Rick Fowlkes says

    I appreciate the post on the blog. I also want to take a moment to respond to Todd’s post. It says that I have been running for the ACC for twenty years which really isn’t true. It is true that I ran in 1988, which was twenty years ago. I also ran in 2004 and 2006 as a Libertarian, but there was a sixteen year gap in there where I was hard at work in the private sector and I was not a candidate for anything at all. My persistence in my pursuit of this particular office is the direct result of the passion I feel for the issues it deals with, and how my background fits so well what a
    Corporation Commissioner should know when they take on the job. Most ACC members are politicians on their way from one office to another higher office and they generally lack the technical background that would be so valuable.

    Regarding the issue of life, I readily confess that it was an issue that was not centermost in my mind during my previous campaigns. It was not an ACC issue and my Libertarian leanings had me convinced that the government should stay out of the debate entirely. Fortunately, I am blessed with a number of pro-life Republican friends and several pro-life Libertarian friends who continued to talk to me and educate me on the issue. The most meaningful transformations were the result of attending the annual conferences put on by Arizona Right to Life.

    Scientists made it plain to see that we were dealing with scientific life, but more than anyone else, it was the post-abortion mothers that made it so clear that we were dealing with HUMAN life. Two or more human lives in truth. These mothers and sometimes even fathers were also victims of what was going on and the truth of it, the absolute, undeniable, graphic truth of it reached down into my core and screamed at me to “Wake UP!” and see what
    was going on.

    Once you begin down the path towards understanding and defending the right to life, you really cannot be stopped. Eventually I re-registered as a Republican where I found even more pro-life friends and I have now reached the point where, when asked, I am happy and proud to say that I am pro-life.
    I tell people that “I was wrong, but now I see the right… The Right to Life!”

    My pro-life positions also carry over to the issues of assisted-suicide, cloning and the rest.

    I also noticed a mention of the issue of illegal immigration and the matricula consular card. When I spoke with the Diocese in 2006 to learn about the card, their description sounded altogether reasonable. Of course, since then I have learned a great deal more about the card and the issue itself and I would certainly oppose it being accepted here in the U.S.A.

    For more on these issues and others, please check out our website at There you will see information about our positions on ACC issues as well as non-ACC issues. You can also use the website to ask the members of my team
    any questions that you would like. We’d love to hear from you!

    Rick Fowlkes
    Proud Republican candidate for the ACC

  11. Just Win Baby says

    That’s why I like blogs. You ask a question and you get an answer. Thanks for the answer Rick. I don’t suppose the Corp. Comm. can turn off the power to homes with illegal aliens in them? That would sure help to solve the problem.

  12. Wow, good stuff Rick. I see that the other “team” has got Marian McClure, a pro-abort from Tucson. She’s not even pretending to be pro-life, so I guess Rick’s team gets my vote. I’ll take an aspiring pro-lifer over Marian Mclure anytime.

  13. I am a PC and have met and researched most of the candidates. Many know that Mr. Fowlkes has already lost three elections, the first twenty years ago, with socially far-left positions he has held his entire life until just recently. Just two years ago, his views on social issues matched those of the most liberal member of the legislature, Kyrsten Sinema – pro-euthanasia, pro-illegal aliens, pro-gay marriage, radically anti-life. Recently he changed his party affiliation and did a 180 on beliefs he’s held his entire life, as the 2008 election (with three open ACC seats) approaches. Now he is running for the fourth time for the ACC and has positioned himself as a conservative pro-life Republican, with two unknowns who have no history of activism in the Republican Party or the conservative movement. Ask pro-life leaders like Len Munsil and Trent Franks who they are supporting for ACC. Its not any of these three. With all due respect, there’s a reason for that.

  14. ArizonaAnne says

    speaking of asking, someone needs to ask Phil Corbell or Keith Swapp what happened at the opening of the Sun City Republican headquarters a couple of weeks ago. there were police there called by Swapp and it didn’t make it a pleasant event.

  15. nightcrawler says


    What are you talking about ?

  16. We remember Corbell. He came after Swapp on an earlier post and when we asked him to provide proof of any of it, he just disappeared. Just a political drive-by. If you see him, tell him he still owes the readers on SA proof, not just smears…

  17. Just Win Baby says

    AA/Nightcrawler, the event in Sun City was surreal. Corbell was passing out these nasty anti-Swapp flyers that went after him, his running mates, elected officials, etc. Then he wanted time on the microphone to attack them and when he didn’t get it, he went nuts on Jan Martinson, the nice lady who was running the event. Shook her up pretty bad. Swapp and one of his running mates (the bigger guy with the ‘stache) ended up staying behind to protect her and I guess a Sheriff’s deputy was sent to a separate event that was occurring nearby because Corbell said he was going there next.

  18. Here I go being the dissenter again…. I have to agree with Susan.

    Mr. Fowlkes is to be commended for his open answer to serious questions. But, in his explanation I saw more glaring issues presented. Sort of the old better to ask forgiveness than permission mentality. This is the most investigative of offices. The amount of reading and research that comes with this job requires its members to do more than get a quick answer, accept it at face value, and move on. We should do the same with our candidates.

    He describes very recent events that require some personal investigation and understanding but instead he accepted an explanation that, it turns out, was not the whole story. He seems to easily accept explanations that meet his interest/purpose at the time, even if it is not truly as he perceives them.

    Years as a Libertarian but now, conveniently, he is a Republican? Ran in 1998, 2004 and 2006 as a Libertarian for ACC, lost those bids but “eventually” registered as a Republican. Yeah, like yesterday. Show some “R” history, support of the party and other candidates, and something beyond a self-serving, “hey the water’s great come on in” association!

    We are bashing Kris Mayes as a RINO for her previous sins, and I do not disagree with much of it. Yes these guys never were the spokesperson for another party candidate; Rick Fowlkes was the candidate for another party and in the very last election cycle! Sorry, he may be a good fellow, but this all sounds way too opportunistic to me.

  19. nightcrawler says

    Thanks JWB,

    Good reporting. I can’t seem to place a face with a name in Corbell, so I won’t pass judgment.

    He must have been quite motivated to show up and pass out fliers and request to speak. There is a story there that needs to be told.

    I am a big believer in free speech. Perhaps Swapp should have taken the opportunity to have an impromptu debate. I know if someone was running their mouth and passing out fliers with my name on them, I would need to put that to rest mano el mano. Give the man the mike for 5 minutes and then take your turn and address each point.

    What probably happened is that he was silenced, felt disrespected and it set him off. It is unfortunate the the Sheriff needed to be called. It should never come to that. A nice lady should never feel uneasy, that part troubles me.

    Fowlkes is a good man. Ironically, he took quite a risk with his post. Several independents and cross over Dems might think twice about him since his “conversion”. So he has put all in eggs in the GOP basket. I guess the question some of you raise is it better to be wrong on an issue, but stay consistent and true to self or is it better to change to the right position and appear to flip flop. A question for the ages.

    Kris Mayes is a very capable and intelligent woman. She has volunteed time speaking in front of our district and various GOP clubs for many years. Conservative ? Who is to say ? Bottomline, if I could, I would vote for her.

  20. Conservative to the Core says

    Everyone must remember that former State Representative John Allen is also running for the ACC. He’s soild on the pro-life front and conservative fiscally. He’s a great choice.

  21. Conservative to the Core says

    Here’s John Allen’s website:

  22. Just Win Baby says

    Heard Fowlkes and I think Hobbs last night at the LD22 meeting. They were there along with Barry Wong. All three seem like really nice guys, but Wong clearly represents the liberal wing of the party. I talked to Fowlkes about life issues and some of the other issues that were on this thread and his answers were very thoughtful and good. I think people are confusing his old libertarian “keep government out of almost everything” with his personal positions on the issues. More than that, he has clearly spent a lot of time since his last race talking and thinking about these issues and government’s appropriate role in them, because his positions are solidly conservative now. I liked him.

  23. Conservative to the Core says

    In 1997, while Barry Wong was in the Legislature, He voted against banning Partial Birth Abortion and informed consent.

  24. joan smith says

    I am extremely interested in what you know and how you feel about the organized attempt to buy our present water provider’s (Brooke’s)water rights here in Strawberry-Pine. I feel that if this new endeavor is not thwarted it will cost the residents much money. I could say more, but as of late, I am just hoping the ACC could help us out. I hope your team is the answer to my concerns.

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