Scarpinato Bails on Star, Riske “Retires”

Matt Benson with the Arizona Republic posted an interesting insider story on some changes taking place with the Arizona Daily Star and Arizona Capitol Times. Daniel Scarpinato who wrote for the Star recently accepted a position with the Capitol Time’s Yellow Sheets as the replacement to Phil Riske’s retirement.

Whether or not Riske’s departure from ACT was an actual retirement or firing is at question.

Benson, who writes for one of ACT’s competitor, provides another perspective. I’m assuming he spoke with Riske over what actually happened but according to Benson’s Political Insider:

But Riske, who had been with the Capitol Times for seven years, said he was fired earlier this month following a dispute with Publisher Ginger Lamb.

The publisher and I had a disagreement on Aug. 7 over promised freelance work for Arizona Capitol Times after retirement. She demanded I leave immediately,” Riske wrote the Insider in a statement. “The publisher appointed a friend to stand over me as I cleaned out my desk, all in front of two dear, perplexed colleagues. It was a humiliating and scarring way to end a 43-year career in journalism.”

Ouch. Nothing like ringside seating to the politics of political reporting.

Incidentally, while I on the topic of political reporting let me make a shameless plug. Sonoran Alliance is always looking for creative and politically conservative writers. Since our arrival on the scene, we’ve been a launching point for several other political blogs here in Arizona – some of them well known. If you’re interested in writing for Sonoran Alliance, please send me a writing sample via email to


  1. What a ridiculous redneck moment. says

    Where’s the real news?

    Where is the budget?


    Free television exposure for our redneck habits in Arizona!!!

    Um, budget?

    And to the moron talking about liberal running amok, wtf is wrong with the conservatives that run our dingbat legislature?

    Uh, the CONSTITUTION that they took an oath to mandates a balanced budget- and EVERY SINGLE BUDGET SO FAR HAS NOT BEEN BALANCED!!!

    If you can’t cut, then you fund. If the voters told you not to cut THROUGH THE BALLOT BOX PROPOSITIONS, THEN RAISE THE TAXES AND TELL THE VOTERS ITS THEIR FAULT.


  2. Karen Fullenwider says

    Make no mistake about it. Phil Riske was shown the door, quite literally. Apparently asking questions and questioning everything is a requirement in the news business, but a reason for firing if you question your own publisher.

    But no worries. Phil will move on and the Capitol Times will cease to exist when the public notice requirements end and move to the Internet. That’s the bulk of its business, publishing the LLCs and foreclosures, etc.

  3. Good riddance Phil!

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