Tempe Mayoral Candidate, Mark Mitchell: Hypocrite

Reposted from Citizens for a Better Tempe

You have probably seen the hit piece put out by the Mitchell campaign, claiming that the historic Monti’s La Casa Vieja “was sued multiple times by vendors for failure to pay bills.”

And you know what, it’s true. Monti’s, like a lot of small businesses, have endured tough times in this economy, and have had to make hard choices to keep their doors open and avoid laying people off.

A lot of businesses like … Mark Mitchell’s company.

Did he leave that part out? That’s odd.

Mark MitchellAnyway, Mitchell’s company – Tempe Decorator Center – was sued multiple times in just the past two years, owing hundreds of thousands of dollars to paint companies and other contractors, according to Maricopa County court records. The business was sued for millions by M&I Bank, and even stiffed the Phoenix Suns on Suite tickets. The company also had state and city tax liens filed against it, including one filed by the City of Tucson just last year.

By the way, if you are confused by the fact that Mitchell says he serves as Vice President of a company called Arizona Flooring & Interiors, and not Tempe Decorator Center (TDC) its because TDC shut down in 2010 and re-opened at around the same time under a different name. I’ll leave it to you to guess why. Here’s a copy of Mitchell’s financial disclosure forms showing both names from 2010.

But wait, it gets better.

Four separate employees of Mark Mitchell had to file complaints with the Arizona Department of Labor over unpaid wages – just last year. The Labor Department then went to court on their behalf to try and get a judgment against Mitchell’s company to pay the wages rightfully owed to them – which the government eventually did.

Even better, while his employees were trying to figure out how to get by without the paychecks they were counting on, Mark Mitchell went on vaca …oh excuse me… to conferences in Washington DC, Denver and Charlotte, stayed at hotels costing upwards of $300 a night, and stuck taxpayers with the bill.

There is a larger point here. That both Monti and Mitchell have seen their businesses struggle in a rough economy isn’t really the issue. We have all felt the effects of the financial crisis. The more important issue is that Mark Mitchell is the type of politician that would demonize someone for struggling, even though his own business had gone through the same thing but worse. And unlike Mitchell, Michael Monti always made sure his employees were taken care of.

We have to do better than Mark Mitchell. It obviously hasn’t occured to Mitchell that the experience of navigating a restaurant through tough times and tight budgets is exactly what we need in Tempe’s next Mayor. Not someone who demagogues them for political gain, and certainly not someone who is a hypocrite for doing so.


  1. Wow, this is pretty damning, except for one thing. Mark Mitchell doesn’t own Tempe Decorator Center and he doesn’t own Arizona Flooring and Interiors.

    This is like blaming one of Monti’s employees for the loss of two of his businesses and the multiple taxes liens filed against him.

  2. Thanks for posting shane!

  3. Mitchell has been touting the fact he is the Vice President of TDC / Southwest and touts himself as a businessman on his website. Nice try, but Mitchell owns this.

  4. Arizona Flooring and Interiors is an LLC. Its owners are called members or managers or even partners. Mitchell isn’t on the list so he’s not an owner. If Mitchell were a republican, the Party Before Country mob would be bending over backwards to excuse what they’re accusing him of. Hypocrisy isn’t exclusive to democrats.

  5. So… the VP of the company doesn’t have any say on the company, not even about the workers that work directly under him. OK. And of course, he is not a hypocrite for attacking Michael Monti for far, far less.

    Can you Dems at least admit that billing taxpayers for his many trips while the people that work under him have to sue for their paychecks was wrong? Even a little bit?

    • TruConserv says

      Shut up, seriously, you’re just making us all look bad.

      This is one of the worst/best examples of non-sequitor imaginable”

      “Can you Dems at least admit that billing taxpayers for his many trips while the people that work under him have to sue for their paychecks was wrong? Even a little bit?”

      I like the Mitchell is just a carpet salesperson comment, that’s a theme we can build on. Lies and stupidity are not.

  6. John B,

    This is the GOP county party bending over backwards to save Michael Monti. He’s been running on a lie. He’s been sued by multiple vendors. He’s had numerous tax liens filed against him.





    Closing a business is a hard thing to go through, but it isn’t the main issue here. How many times have I heard Michael Monti call himself a successful business man?

    Monti throws a lot of people under the bus, but even he hasn’t blamed an employee for his financial problems. So why his he blaming Mitchell, who is clearly just an employee?

    • Did you read any of these lien documents that you just posted? They are all expired liens. The “last date to extend” is in the past. Generally, that means that the liens were paid off. And where is the evidence of lawsuits?

  7. Just an employee? I’m confused, on Mitchell’s website he calls himself a “small businessman.”

  8. TruConserv says

    I knew this was too good to be true.

    There I was, thinking that finally someone had written a serious, intelligent article for SA — and then it just blows up as a lie, complete with all kinds of excuses and false claims of confusion.

    I’ve written it before – wingnuts should not be allowed to speak as if they are conservatives, and anyone who thought this article was a good idea that would actually be effective is doing more harm that good for the conservative movement.

  9. TruConserv, first if you are going to pretend to be a conservative you should avoid terms like “wingnut”, it exposes you as a liberal.

    Second, every single thing in this article is 100% true. Everything. Need to learn to handle hard truths a little better.

    • TruConserv says

      No, it exposes me as a true conservative.

      Winguts exist on both sides of the aisle, and many leaders of the conservative movement love the ones on the left and hate the ones on the right – and for the same basic reason: wingnuts are embarissments for their respective parties.

      If you don’t think AZ (R) leadership doesn’t toss around the W-word the same way Johnnie Cochran used the N-word in private, then you’re just out of the loop.

      True conservatives hate wingnuts – you know, the black helicopter, flouride in the toothpaste, birther, truther, Thomas was framed and the Earth is only 6000 years old crowd the left uses to dismiss our party as a bunch of Henny Penny clones.

    • TruConserv says

      No, this article is not even remotely true.

      Mitchell is neither an owner nor a principle of these companies. He’s a vice-president. I used to be a vice-president of a global company, and I had virtually no power or authority to do anything beyond manage my team and give other teams my counsel. I couldn’t force payroll to do the right thing, I could only tell them what would happen if it didn’t.

      Attacking Mitchell as not being a job-creator is fair game. Attacking him as nothing more than a carpet salesperson is fair game.

      But anyone with any corporate experience is going to see through this bit of sleeze. Anyone who claims they don’t understand why this article is a lie is either a fool or a liar.

  10. Take a breath, DailyKos. Focus. This article is about pointing out that Mark Mitchell is a hypocrite. Nothing about birthers or helicopters. Step away from the keyboard, go watch the Daily Show and come back tomorrow.

    • TruConserv says

      It’s more wingnut crap that makes conservatives look bad.

      When we push demonstratively false stories like this it ruins our credibility on the real stories and the real issues our State faces.

      Telling the truth is a conservative value that I defend, why don’t you?

  11. OK, last comment. If you bother to read it, you’ll see the article identifies him as a VP. Second, TDC is not a global company. Its a very small one, so to suggest the VP has no authority is foolish. If you go to Mitchell’s website, you’ll see that he touts himself as a “small businessman” not a carpet salesman. Sounds like he has some authority to me.

    You don’t deny that everything said about Mitchell and his company is true. All you are left with is hair-splitting on job titles, and whether or not being an executive at a company that screws over employees – then attacks another business for struggling in tough times – makes Mark Mitchell a hypocrite.

    • TruConserv says

      This isn’t hair-splitting.

      One guy is an owner, and has the final say, the other is not.

      One guy was actually sued, the other was not.

      The article – and the argument you support – promulgates the deception that Mitchell was sued by employees and that he, Mitchell, had done things that he was contemptuous of Monti for having done.

      I’m not here to defend Mitchell, I am here to protect the reputation of conservatives.

      We’re conservatives. We’re the good guys. We’re the ones that tell the truth. I want to keep it that way. You, not so much with the truth telling …

  12. As someone who received the Mitchell mailer in question, this really makes me angry. I can’t wait for Mitchell to lose.

  13. The founder / owner of TDC / AZ Flooring is the Chairman of Mark Mitchell’s campaign. Say it with me now… HYPOCRITE

    • TruConserv says

      Now that is a good and credible argument.

      No need to lie about Mitchell, just point out that his campaign is managed by a man who did the same as Monti.

      Wingnuts always go for the bizarre and incredible, foregoing the obvious and the believable.

      I’m not here to defend Mitchell, I’m after the wingnuts who damage the (R) name. Too bad the (R) party communications team doesn’t do the same. (Especially how often they joke about “wingnuts” in private!)

  14. Moron, again, its not bizarre or incredible to point out that its hypocritical if the company you serve as an executive for does the same thing you are attacking your opponent for. Its not crazy to say that a guy who touts himself as a small businessman and Vice President of an unethical company should probably not run on tax liens or lawsuits.

    Enough with the high and mighty routine. Its nitwits like you who are doing the smearing and hyperbole, no one else.

    • TruConserv says

      The article didn’t do that, did it?

      No, it made it sound like Mitchell was the one who made the decisions, held the purse-strings, and was the target of the lawsuits.

      That’s the wingnuttery I oppose.

      It’s all a transparent lie, and as you seeming now agree with your modified argument, one that was unnecessary.

      Nothing high and mighty about that … just good old fashioned conservative values.

      • The article did exactly that. It specifically, and correctly, identified Mitchell as a VP. The argument is exactly the same as the one made in the article, the one you were too slow to catch the first time.

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