Tag Archives: Joe Arpaio

Katherine, Kenneth and Ken: Three Ks make KKK

Gov. Jan Brewer, left, pauses to answer a question, as she is joined by Secretary of State Ken Bennett, right, and Attorney General Tom Horne after signing the canvass on the recall election results on the defeat of state Sen. Russell Pearce during a brief ceremony in Bennett's office at the Arizona Capitol, Monday, Nov. 21, 2011, in Phoenix. It was the first recall election of an Arizona legislator, setting the stage for successful challenger  Jerry Lewis to take office. Lewis defeated Pearce in the Nov. 8 recall election in a Mesa legislative district.

Associated Press photo

Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett is a Mormon and a co-chair of fellow Mormon multi-millionaire Mittens Romney’s presidential campaign in Arizona. The Repugnican Tea Party traitor Bennett (photographed above in November with Repugnican Tea Party Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, who initially appointed him to his post) says that there is a possibility that he will remove Barack Obama from Arizona’s November ballot because of lingering “questions” over Obama’s U.S. citizenship. Do the “tea party” traitors really want a rematch of the Civil War?

In late 2000, it was good enough for the Repugnican Tea Party traitors to block a recount of Florida’s presidential votes and to have the right-wing “justices” on the U.S. Supreme Court crown George W. Bush as president, even though Al Gore had won not only the popular vote, but the state of Florida as well.

(In order for Gee Dubya to “win” the pivotal state of Florida, it was awfully helpful for him to have his brother Jeb as Florida’s governor and also to have the state’s secretary of state, Katherine Harris, in his pocket as well. Harris served not only as her state’s chief elections official, but she served as co-chair of her state’s committee to elect Gee Dubya as well. No conflict of interest there!)

In 2004, Repugnican Ohio Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell, among other things, made damn sure that Repugnican-heavy precincts had plenty of voting booths but that Democratic-heavy precincts had too few, making Democratic voters (or would-be Democratic voters, anyway) wait in line for hours.

Just like his mentor Katherine Harris, Kenneth Blackwell also was co-chair of his state’s committee to “re”-elect Gee Dubya, even though he was the state’s chief elections officer. Unshockingly, with the help of Blackwell, Gee Dubya “won” the pivotal state of Ohio in 2004, giving us four more years of his unelected rule.

Now comes the Repugnican Tea Party secretary of state of Arizona, Ken Bennett, who initially was not elected, but who initially was appointed to his post by Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer after former Arizona Secretary of State Brewer ascended to the governorship when Democratic former Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano stupidly left the state to become Barack Obama’s secretary of “homeland security” and to leave Borg queen Jan Brewer in charge. (Arizona’s constitution provides that the state’s secretary of state becomes governor in the event of a vacancy in the governorship. Arizona has no lieutenant governor.) 

Reuters reports that Ken Bennett, a Mormon, “is Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s campaign co-chairman in Arizona.”

No shock there, right? This is a pattern that we’ve seen.

But Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennnett is talking about the possibility of his removing incumbent president Barack Obama from Arizona’s November ballot altogether.

Why bother to stop the vote (re-)counting?

Why bother to suppress the Democratic or Democratic-leaning voters, such as by falsely labeling them as felons (as Katherine Harris did) or by making them wait in line for hours to be able to vote (as Kenneth Blackwell did) or by making them show state-issued ID cards in order to be able to vote (as the legislatures of the red states are doing or are trying to do)?

Just remove the Democratic candidate from the ballot altogether!

Clearly, Ken Bennett is a fucking political genius.

Bennett says that he has received some e-mails from constituents, you see. Constituents who are “concerned” that Muslim socialist Barack Hussein Obama is not a U.S. citizen.

Not e-mails from anti-democratic, white-supremacist fascists. No. E-mails — and we all know that all e-mails, by definition, are credible and respectable — from concerned citizens. Concerned. Citizens.

So let’s see. Let’s run the logic of this:

Billary Clinton wanted to be president of the United States of America very badly. Repugnican Tea Party fossil John McCainosaurus also in 2008 wanted to be the next prez. Maybe not as badly as Billary did, but: Do you really fucking think for one nanosecond that if there had been any actual problems with Obama’s qualifications to be U.S. president, neither Billary nor the McCain-Palin camp, with millions of dollars at their disposal, would have discovered this fact through their opposition research? And prevented Obama from continuing in his quest for the Oval Office?

The birther dipshits have failed in the court system, too. Notes Wikipedia:

Although Obama was confirmed as president-elect by Congress on January 8, 2009, and sworn in as president on January 20, 2009, litigation continued into his presidency. Numerous individuals and groups have filed state or federal lawsuits seeking to have Obama disqualified from standing or being confirmed for the presidency, or to compel him to release additional documentation relating to his citizenship.

By mid-December 2008, at least 17 lawsuits had been filed challenging Obama’s eligibility in states including North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Hawaii, Connecticut, New Jersey, Texas and Washington. No such suit had resulted in the grant of any relief to the plaintiffs by any court. All of the cases have been rejected in lower courts. Three post-election suits were dismissed by the Supreme Court of the United States. [Emphasis mine.]

The U.S. Supreme Court coronated George W. Bush as president but won’t touch the birther bullshit.

This fact also speaks volumes.

But here comes Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett — who, as well as helping out Mitt Romney in Arizona even though Bennett is the state’s chief elections official, according to the Los Angeles Times also has his eye on Arizona’s governorship in 2014 — saying, according to the Times, that he hasn’t ruled out the possibility of removing Obama from Arizona’s ballot if the state of Hawaii does not meet his demands regarding Obama’s birth certificate. Reports the Times:

Asked if he would keep Obama’s name off the state’s 2012 ballot if Hawaii fails to fulfill his request, Bennett said: “That’s possible. Or the other option would be I would ask all the other candidates, including the president, maybe to submit a certified copy of their birth certificate. But I don’t want to do that.”

So, to recap: Neither Billary nor McCainosaurus disputed Obama’s American citizenship during the 2008 campaign. The right-wing, president-selecting U.S. Supreme Court has refused to touch the matter of Obama’s citizenship. And Arizona’s Ken Bennett remains the only chief elections official of any of the 50 states to try to make Obama’s citizenship an “issue” at this time. And he certainly is the only state’s chief elections official who has raised the specter of removing the incumbent president from the November ballot altogether.

In light of all of this, three things need to happen:

  • The state of Arizona, the South Africa of the Southwest, needs to be (continued to be) boycotted for its backasswards, white supremacist/racist bullshit, such as its blatantly unconstitutional “breathing while brown” legislation, its blatantly white supremacist infamous Sheriff Joe Arpaio*, and for its secretary of state, who, along with Katherine Harris and with Kenneth Blackwell, we now can induct into the Chief State Elections Officials’ Hall of Shame.
  • Federal legislation needs to be passed that prohibits any state’s chief elections official from participating in any political candidate’s campaign, even just on paper. This is a no-fucking-brainer. You cannot have a fair election when the top elections official has a horse in the race. Subordinate state elections officials also should be prohibited from being active in any political campaign that their elections office oversees. Otherwise, it’s a blatant and anti-democratic conflict of interest. 
  • The actual democracy- and freedom-loving residents of Arizona need to recall Ken Bennett. In November they successfully recalled the architect of the state’s “breathing while brown” legislation (a.k.a. SB1070, which the state’s legislature passed in April 2010), former Arizona state Senate President Russell Pearce (who is yet another fucking Mormon). They can recall Bennett, too.

And, of course, should Bennett actually remove Barack Obama from Arizona’s ballot – which is, I think, unlikely, and the threat of which I believe most likely is just his political ploy to get the white-supremacist/racist vote – the federal government would need to intervene forcefully in such a blatantly anti-democratic violation of a state’s citizens’ voting rights.

And we real Americans would need to consider the need to pay Arizona a visit with our torches and pitchforks, because this bullshit will not stand, and this bullshit is the stuff of which civil wars are made.

P.S. Fun Ken Bennett trivia! Wikipedia notes that in 2006 Bennett’s son, Clifton, pled guilty to sexual battery, specifically, to having rectally violated at least one fellow minor:

A 2006 plea bargain involving [Bennett’s] son, Clifton, became controversial after several parents of victims accused [Bennett] of exerting undue influence to affect the case. In what a county attorney described as a summer camp “hazing ritual” gone wrong, Clifton [Bennett] and another man inserted a broomstick into the rectums of at least 18 boys in over 40 separate incidents.

Ultimately Clifton [Bennett], only 17 years old and a minor, pled guilty to one count of aggravated assault. Clifton was sentenced to 30 days in jail and three years’ probation. [Democratic] Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard said he “had questions about the handling of the case,” but that his office had no authority to intervene. Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk defended the plea bargain and accused the news media of misrepresenting the issue.

A nut usually doesn’t fall far from the tree, does it?

And why is such sadism apparently so prevalent within the Mormon cult, such as how the 18-year-old Mittens Romney led a band of thugs to commit assault and battery on a young gay man? Romney called his forcible cutting of the young gay man’s hair a “prank,” but that isn’t a “prank” — that is assault and battery, a crime — and today, it would be classified as a hate crime.

Mormons are evil.

*Reuters notes that “In March, Maricopa County Sheriff [Joe] Arpaio declared Obama’s birth certificate a forgery following an [“investigation”] by a volunteer posse, acting at the request of conservative [“tea party”] activists in the Phoenix valley.” Of course, such a federal matter is not within any county sheriff’s jurisdiction, but white supremacists like Joe Arpaio, who is in deep shit with the feds for his office’s blatantly racist mistreatment of Latinos in Arizona, come to believe that they are omnipotent.

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Bumbling Brewer belongs behind bars

Jan Brewer

Associated Press photo

Repugnican Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, a geriatric Barbie, is shown before the start of her first and last disastrous gubernatorial debate Wednesday night in Phoenix. Brewer’s speaking skills aren’t her worst crime, however; she very apparently has corrupt ties to the private prison industry, and the “breathing-while-brown” bill that she signed apparently was meant to send more business the private prison industry’s way.

Dorothy must have thrown some water on the Wicked Witch of the Southwest, Repugnican Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, because Brewer had a meltdown on live television.

I have to admit that I thoroughly enjoyed watching, over and over again, the clip of Brewer freezing on live TV as she delivered her opening statement in her debate Wednesday night with her Democratic challenger Terry Goddard (who now is Arizona’s attorney general) like a nervous elementary school child delivering a book report.

Brewer’s word choice in the debate was as sophisticated as an elementary school child’s, too. This is how she opened before having a painfully long Alzheimer’s moment of silence in which she appeared not to even be able to remember her own name: “I have, uh, [long pause] done so much, and I just cannot believe that we have changed everything since I have become your governor in the last 600 days. Arizona has been brought back from its abyss….”

Yikes.

“We have changed everything”? “Arizona has been brought back from its abyss”?

Really?

The rest of the nation is still reeling from the devastation wrought not only by Hurricane Katrina but also by Hurricane George and Hurricane Dick, but under the governance of the Wicked Witch of the Southwest, Arizona is a magical oasis that has been “brought back from its abyss”?

What about Brewer’s other talking point, which is that the “illegals” have put Arizona into an abyss? Is Arizona in an abyss or has Brewer rescued it from an abyss? Which is it?

Brewer clearly isn’t fit to be governor even of Alaska. Her performance at her first and apparently final debate isn’t her only meltdown caught on tape. Rachel Maddow’s reportage of Brewer’s debate meltdown shows that Brewer struggles to speak coherently in public and that when confronted with questions from reporters who don’t lick her lily-white ass, like good reporters should, Brewer bolts like Nevada’s Sharron “Second Amendment Remedies” Angle.

And after her debacle of a debate performance, Brewer has refused to participate in any more debates from now until election day. (Her Democratic opponent has proposed that they have six debates.)

Yeah, that’s the fearless leadership that’s going to bring Arizona out of “its abyss” (or already has brought Arizona out of “its abyss” — I’m so confused…). What Arizona really needs now is an easily addled old woman who believes (as Sharron Angle believes) that the media’s job is to give her free positive publicity.

Years ago, as a reporter for the student newspaper at the University of Arizona in Tucson, I interviewed at some length Brewer’s Democratic opponent, Terry Goddard, who at that time had just been the mayor of Phoenix and was running for the governorship against Repugnican Richie-Rich frat boy Fife Symington III, who went on to beat Goddard but who later was forced to resign the governorship in disgrace after he was convicted of bank fraud in 1997.

I remember virtually nothing of my interview with Goddard (it was, after all, 20 years ago, and I don’t have a copy of the article that I wrote from that interview), but I remember being impressed with how intelligent and well-spoken — and thus virtually gubernatorially unelectable in Arizona — Goddard is.  

Seriously, though: intelligent, competent, honest politicians like Goddard don’t do very well in Arizona. Arizonans prefer crooked dumbfucks like racist Mormon motherfucker Repugnican dipshit Evan Mecham, the state’s first governor to be impeached and removed from office (under a cloud of financial fraud); the felonious Fife Symington III; and Jan Alzheimer — er, Jan Brewer, whose centerpiece for her campaign for the governorship (to which she ascended after Arizona’s elected Democratic governor, Janet Napolitano, was tapped to become President Barack Obama’s secretary of homeland security) has been to assert that all of the state’s problems are caused by undocumented immigrants (mostly from Mexico) — even though a new study from the Pew Hispanic Center finds that illegal immigration to the United States between 2007 and 2009 was about two-thirds less than it was between 2000 and 2005. So illegal immigration is declining, not increasing.

There’s also the interesting angle that Brewer’s campaign manager, Chuck Coughlin, also does the public relations for the Tennessee-based private prisons corporation Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) — which apparently has stood to profit from SB 1070, which the Phoenix New Times appropriately called the “breathing-while-brown” law that the racist, white supremacist Brewer enthusiastically signed into law — and that a federal judge then appropriately struck down as unconstitutional.*

“What’s the big deal with the CCA contributions [to Brewer’s political interests]?” the New Times asks and then answers: “CCA operates six prisons in Arizona, three of which house detainees for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”

So apparently CCA helps Jan Brewer and Jan Brewer helps CCA by assuring that CCA has plenty of brown-skinned bodies to be incarcerated in its private prison facilities.

(Rachel Maddow also has been reporting on Brewer’s apparently corrupt ties to CCA; she did an excellent report on the matter here.)

Jan Brewer belongs not in the governor’s chair, but belongs behind bars for corruption, even though she only dutifully corruptly follows in the corrupt footsteps of her corrupt Repugnican (redundant…) predecessors Evan Mecham and Fife Symington III.

Even if she weren’t corrupt and racist and white supremacist, Brewer’s refusal to participate in any more debates demonstrates that she is utterly unfit to continue to govern Arizona, which she has made into a national pariah enough already.

P.S. I just saw this at the Arizona Republic’s website:

As for that opening statement, Brewer said in an interview [yesterday] that her mind went blank. “If someone had asked me my name, I wouldn’t have been able to tell them,” she said.

Shit, I was just joking (for the most part) when I referred to Brewer’s “painfully long Alzheimer’s moment of silence in which she appeared not to even be able to remember her own name.”

Apparently, according to Jan “What’s My Name?” Brewer herself, it was no joke.

If Arizonans actually elect this Alzheimer’s special, they’re even dumber that we of the rest of the nation already think they are.

*In a similar vein, the Los Angeles Times reports:

The U.S. Department of Justice [yesterday] sued a controversial and popular Arizona sheriff, alleging that his department was refusing to cooperate with an investigation into whether it discriminated against Latinos while trying to catch illegal immigrants.

The Justice Department said that Maricopa County [which encompasses Phoenix and is not on the border with Mexico] Sheriff Joe Arpaio was the first local law enforcement official in 30 years to refuse to provide documents in a federal civil rights inquiry. The federal government could withhold $113 million in funding from Maricopa County if Arpaio can’t produce records demonstrating that he avoids racial discrimination.

“The actions of the sheriff’s office are unprecedented. It is unfortunate that the department was forced to resort to litigation to gain access to public documents and facilities,” said Thomas E. Perez, assistant attorney general for the department’s Civil Rights Division…

Arpaio claims that the Obama administration is playing politics, of course, but the L.A. Times also notes that

In the summer of 2008, under President George W. Bush, the Justice Department launched a preliminary investigation into the allegations of racial profiling [by Arpaio’s office]. In March 2009, after President Obama had assumed office, the department expanded the inquiry into a full-fledged probe.

What the white supremacists who run Arizona (Brewer, Arpaio, et. al.) — and their white supremacist supporters — apparently don’t get is that each state has to follow federal law, including the federal civil rights laws, and so that Arizona doesn’t get to be the South Africa of the Southwest.

Arpaio, I have to say, is a major racist, fascistic asshole who deserves to be relegated to the dustbin of white supremacist history along with Jan Brewer.

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