Election official in Arizona’s Senate dispute represented figure in ‘Fast and Furious’ arms scandal

Note: Having a Democrat controlling elections is like letting a fox in the hen house:

By Lukas Mikelionis | Fox News

A county official in Arizona, whom Republicans accuse of destroying evidence to cover up “voting irregularities,” has previously defended the accused ringleader of a group of gun straw buyers in Operation Fast and Furious, the federal operation that led to the death of a Border Patrol agent in the state.

Before he was elected in 2016 as Maricopa County recorder, Adrian Fontes was an attorney representing clients in narco-terrorism and firearms scandals.

He is now at the center of a contentious vote-count procedure in Arizona’s U.S. Senate race, where Democrat Kyrsten Sinema suddenly took a lead over Republican Martha McSally, thanks to votes mostly in Maricopa County.

The Republican Party objected to Fontes’ efforts to allow voters to confirm that they signed early ballots that were dropped off on Election Day, and criticized the official for opening emergency voting centers the weekend before Tuesday’s election and for mixing disputed ballots with valid ones.

The accusations of improper procedures led to a deal between Republicans and Democrats being struck in court on Friday, giving all counties in Arizona until this coming Wednesday to address problems with ballots.

“Adrian Fontes intentionally put himself above the law and the judicial process,” Arizona Republican Party Chairman Jonathan Lines said in a statement before the agreement. “Such a man cannot be trusted to administer elections in Arizona. We are reviewing all legal options at this time and will continue to protect the rights of every legal voter in Arizona.”

“Such a man cannot be trusted to administer elections in Arizona. We are reviewing all legal options at this time and will continue to protect the rights of every legal voter in Arizona.”
— Arizona Republican Party Chairman Jonathan Lines

Fontes, a Democrat, represented Manuel Celis-Acosta in 2011 following his arrest in Operation Fast and Furious, in which some federal officers aimed to sell firearms to Mexican drug cartels so the U.S. government could then track the weapons.

The accused man allegedly transferred around 2,000 weapons to the Sinaloa Cartel, including those that were allegedly used to kill Border Patrol agent Brian Terry.

But Fontes dismissed the role of the ringleader, saying the gun straw buyers — those who purchase weapons for those who cannot — were just “a bunch of kids” and not a “nefarious organization.”
“A straw buyer is usually a kid who is 18-25, who needs a couple hundred extra bucks and knows somebody who knows somebody that has a way to make a couple extra bucks,” Adrian Fontes told Fox News in 2012.

“The government wants a dramatic indictment, they want the conspiracy to sound like it’s run out by highly sophisticated individuals who are involved with a particularly nefarious organization when the reality is it’s just a bunch of kids,” he added.

The main suspect in Operation Fast and Furious was arrested twice before, a report shows
In 2011, the attorney also represented Emilia Palomina-Robles, a woman who was part of the three-person group charged with an attempt to purchase a Stinger missile and other military weapons for a Mexican drug cartel.

Fontes accused the government at the time of “trying to see if they could make the charges stick” after the government kept the court filings sealed. “The government will have a tough time proving all the allegations,” he said.

The woman was later sentenced to 10 years in prison for her role in the scheme to acquire the military-grade weapons on behalf of a drug cartel.

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GOP State Chairman Comment on Court Settlement

Arizona GOP Chairman Jonathan Lines issued this statement Saturday on the controversy surrounding the U.S. Senate election:

“From the beginning, we have always had one goal: fair treatment of all voters, regardless of which county they live in.

“Today’s settlement ensures that voters in all of Arizona’s 15 counties, particularly those 11 rural counties that had not been planning to continue with ballot rehabilitation, will have their voices heard.

“I am still very disappointed in the conduct of County Recorder Adrian Fontes. His lack of respect for the rule of law and his willful destruction of evidence should not be forgotten. There must be a full accounting of his actions. We will not forget, nor allow this settlement to sweep his possible misconduct under the rug.”

Senate candidate Martha McSally on Saturday night issued this statement:

“Equal protection under the law is a fundamental constitutional right for American voters. As a combat veteran, I fought to protect it. And today, we won an important battle to preserve that right for rural voters in Arizona. I will continue fighting until every ballot is counted.”

Democrats Benefit from Prolonged Vote Counting

Amid concerns of improper handling of ballots in multiple Arizona counties, radical Democrat Kyrsten Sinema stretched her lead today to some 21,000 votes over conservative candidate Martha McSally.

As of 5 p.m. today (Nov. 9th), Sinema’s vote tally is 991,189. McSally sits at 970,986. Surprisingly, Sinema is also stretching her lead in Maricopa County, usually a grave-yard for the Left. Maricopa County is going for Sinema by 595,444 to 556,076. Outside of Maricopa County, McSally leads 414,910 to 395,745. For many elections in past years, Democrats would have won elections had the GOP candidates not been saved by Maricopa County. What we’re seeing here is totally unexpected.

McSally led by 17,000 votes Wednesday. By Thursday, Sinema went ahead by 9,000 votes. There are still hundreds of thousands of ballots waiting to be processed.

As President Trump noted today, it seems that every time vote counting gets stretched out, as well as in recounts, the Democrats always seem to benefit.

The yo-yo that is the secretary of state’s precinct reporting totals is once again at 100 percent. That figure has fluctuated wildly throughout the week, leaving people to wonder what the real figure is.

Democrats are seeking to regain control of public education in Arizona as well, and in the state superintendent of public instruction race, their candidate Kathy Hobbs now leads the GOP’s Frank Riggs by some 31,000 votes.

After today’s vote counting, Democrat Sandra Kennedy has moved into second place among three candidates for the Arizona Corporation Commission. The top two of the three candidates will gain election. Republican Justin Olson continues to lead with 901,431 votes. Kennedy, who had been in third place until today, now has 899,610 votes, and Republican Rodney Glassman dropped from second to third with 897,938 votes.

Every day since Election Day Tuesday, Democrats in Arizona have had the bigger day. Each day now looks like a Pima County day. Democrats heavily control the state’s second-largest county.

AZ GOP Chairman Lines to Fontes: Destruction of Evidence Must Stop

The Arizona Republican Party objects in the strongest possible terms to the deliberate, premeditated destruction of evidence by Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes.

After voting irregularities were discovered during the early voting period, the Arizona Republican Party sent a formal, written request to all county recorders in Arizona, including Fontes, to preserve all evidence of such irregularities. These irregularities include the creation of so-called “emergency voting centers” when no emergency existed; and an inconsistent method for rehabilitating early ballots.

Specifically, the Arizona Republican Party notified Fontes of these irregularities, that there may be a legal challenge based on these irregularities and inconsistencies, and that the law, therefore, required the county recorders to set aside the disputed ballots to allow the legal process to play out in due course.

Instead, Fontes intentionally destroyed the evidence. He directed his office to mix the disputed ballots in with the undisputed ballots—thereby ensuring that there could be no review of voting irregularities. Fontes’s decision was made deliberately, after receiving the letter from the Arizona Republican Party and being informed of his legal duty to preserve evidence.

Chairman Jonathan Lines issued the following statement: “Adrian Fontes intentionally put himself above the law and the judicial process. Such a man cannot be trusted to administer elections in Arizona. We are reviewing all legal options at this time and will continue to protect the rights of every legal voter in Arizona.”

MEDIA ADVISORY: AZ GOP Press Conference Regarding Ongoing Litigation

PHOENIX — Arizona Republican Party Chairman Jonathan Lines and Arizona Republican Party attorney Kory Langhofer today will speak to the press regarding today’s hearing.

WHO: AZ GOP Chairman Jonathan Lines and Attorney Kory Langhofer

WHAT: Press conference regarding today’s hearing

WHERE: Superior Court of Arizona in Maricopa County; 101 W Jefferson St, Phoenix, AZ 85003

WHEN: Today, Friday November 9, 2018 at 1:30pm

2018 Arizona General Election Coverage

New Results of the U.S. Senate Vote Count: So far today, McSally has gained about 3,000 votes, interestingly enough just one day after the Superior Court hearing. Does this mean some Democrat shenanigans have been brought to a halt?

Saturday, Nov. 10, 1:41, 6 p.m.

R-McSally 976,204

D-Sinema 994,934

G-Green 47,075

NOTES

Just in is this statement from McSally Campaign CEO Jim Bognet on the current state of the Arizona senate race:

“With half a million ballots left to count we remain confident that as votes continue to come in from counties across the state, Martha McSally will be elected Arizona’s next Senator.”

From The Arizona Conservative:

Sinema owes her lead to over-performing in Maricopa County, which is where Republicans usually run up the score in statewide elections. Sinema has a shocking lead of 28,000 votes over McSally who is dominating the majority of the state’s rural counties. Voter turnout was 60 percent in Maricopa, up from 45 percent the previous election.

Sinema has 551,000 votes in Maricopa County. McSally has 523,000, and this could cost her the election, but we certainly hope not. The conservative cities surrounding Phoenix and Tempe should be making a big difference for the Republican, but we’re still waiting for that red wave to emerge from Mesa, Chandler and Gilbert.

In 2016, John McCain won Maricopa County with 55 percent of the vote to Ann Kirkpatrick’s 40 percent. McCain received more than 653,000 votes to Kirkpatrick’s 475,000. Does this mean that a lot of McCain voters went Democrat? No way to tell yet.

Arizona Legislature: Currently the GOP has a 17-13 in the Senate and a 31-29 lead in the House

A Message from Jonathan Lines, Chairman, Arizona Republican Party

Wow. What an incredible night. My friends, we made history last night.

First and foremost, we re-elected our great governor, Doug Ducey. You should know that Governor Ducey is more than just an incredible governor. Over the last month, he has worked incredibly hard on behalf of our ticket. This last weekend, the governor and I visited over a dozen Republican party headquarters, events and pancake breakfasts. He campaigns with the same singular focus that we see on the 9th floor every day.

We’re so fortunate to have him as our governor, and no one works harder to lift up our party than he does.

After the Governor’s victory was declared, the winning didn’t stop. Steve Gaynor will be our new Secretary of State. Mark Brnovich, our state’s top cop, will serve 4 more years as Attorney General. Kimberly Yee, who served so honorably as our Senate Majority Leader, will be a great State Treasurer. And while we don’t have an official call yet for Superintendent of Public Instruction, Corporation Commission or Mine Inspector, we believe that all are poised for victory.

But I want to give a special shout-out to my friend Martha McSally. Tens of millions of dollars landed in Arizona to tear her down and lie about her record. And while the race is too close to call…I am confident that when the dust settles, she will be the first female United States Senator from Arizona.

Congratulations, Martha. I’ll be honored to be your constituent.

We have had a historic cycle, and together, we defended the desert. Together, we made over 5 million phone calls, knocked on over a million doors and trained thousands of new activists and Republican volunteers. We made history last night…and we are going to make history again in 2020.

Thank you for the honor of serving as your chairman. I’ll go into battle with all of you, any time.

Sincerely,

Chairman Lines

Editor’s Note: Chairman Lines and his team are doing the best job of communicating to the base and exposing the Left than any previous state GOP leadership group. Congratulations on a phenomenal job! Keep doing what you’re doing! Well-deserved kudos also go to Ayshia Connor and Torunn Sinclair (of the McSally campaign) as well!

Here are some excellent post-election articles well worth taking the time to read:

Rush Limbaugh:

Retiring RINOS Bought the Drive-By Media’s Blue Wave Scam

The American Spectator:

A Much, Much Better Night Than Had Been Forecast

 

***Percentage of Precincts Reporting: 99% according to AZ Secretary of State website***

U.S. House Races

D1:

R-Rogers 103,000

D-O’Halleran 117,000

D2:

R-Peterson 109,000

D-Kirkpatrick 125,000

D3:

R-Pierson 49,000

D-Grijalva 78,000

D4:

R-Gosar 159,000

D-Brill 69,000

D5:

R-Biggs 125,000

D-Green 83,000

D6:

R-Schweikert 122,000

D-Malik 95,000

D7:

D-Gallego 67,000

Green-Swing 12,000

D8:

R-Lesko 123,000

D-Tipirneni 94,000

D9:

R-Ferrara  68,000

D-Stanton 101,000

Governor’s Race

R-Ducey 1,070,162

D-Garcia 756,369

Attorney General

R-Brnovich 965,708

D-Contreras 858,094

Secretary of State

R-Gaynor 930,178

D-Hobbs 902,230

State Treasurer

R-Yee 999,684

D-Manoil 808,567

Superintendent of Public Instruction

R-Riggs 907,534

D-Hoffman 927,077

Arizona Corporation Commission

R-Glassman 844,446

R-Olson 847,485

D-Kennedy 830,665

State MIne Inspector

R-Hart 939,316

D-Pierce, 836,787

Ballot Measures

Prop 127

Yes-30.19%

No-69.81%

Prop 125

Yes-51.7%

No-48.3%

Prop 126

Yes-65.15%
No-34.85%

Prop 305

Yes-34.9%
No-65.1%

Prop 306

Yes-56.09%
No-43.81%

 

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#WheresKyrsten on confirming Judge Kavanaugh?

Socialist and U.S. Senate candidate Kyrsten Sinema is riding the rails trying to fool the public. She won answer questions on whether or not she would vote to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh of the Supreme Court. She’s trying to tiptoe on the fence and fool voters into thinking she’s a reasonable moderate candidate. She is anything but! If voters make the mistake of electing her, she’ll be another Schumer, another Sanders. Radical and far left to the bone; that’s what she is and what she doesn’t want you to know. Beware the bait and switch from this pre-election chameleon!

When Sinema’s been in front of press this week she hasn’t answered the question on whether she’d vote to confirm the judge. When providing statements to the press, she buttons her lips and plays it safe. She’s really playing the voters.

When asked on Tuesday during a Fox 10 Phoenix interview, Republican Martha McSally was asked whether she’d voted to confirm Judge Kavanaugh. She answered the question.

When asked on Wednesday during an interview with the AP, McSally was asked whether she’d vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh. She answered the question.

When asked on Wednesday during an interview with Mac and Gaydos, McSally was asked whether she’d vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh. She answered the question.

When asked on Wednesday during an interview with ABC 15, McSally was asked whether she’d vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh. She answered the question.

Why won’t Kyrsten Sinema be honest with Arizonans and let them know where she stands? Why is she trying to tiptoe through the tulips and deceive the voters? When there’s no way in heck she will ever vote to confirm a constitutionalist judicial candidate? She prefers judicial activists who will circumvent the legislative process and write radical, new laws from the bench — taking away your freedom.

“Kyrsten is running to be the next Senator from Arizona, and confirming judges is one of the greatest responsibilities given to members of the Senate,” said McSally Spokeswoman Torunn Sinclair. “Arizonans deserve to know where Kyrsten Sinema stands on confirming Judge Kavanaugh. Why won’t Kyrsten answer the question? Because she’s a liberal extremist trying to fool Arizona voters into thinking she’s a moderate.”

Riggs Official Winner in GOP Primary Race for State Superintendent of Public Instruction

Former California Congressman Frank Riggs has narrowly and officially won the Republican nomination to run for state superintendent of public instruction in the November general election. Riggs finished with a total of 124,666 votes and edged out Bob Branch (124,307) by just 359 votes. Incumbent Diane Douglas finished a close third.

Ending Our Silence: Let No One Named McCain Succeed the Vindictive Maverick

I was going to hold my tongue about the death of John McCain, but after reading this AP story … well let’s just say the gloves are coming off!

WASHINGTON (AP) — John McCain’s daughter and two former presidents led a public rebuke of President Donald Trump’s divisive politics at the late senator’s memorial service Saturday in a call for a return to civility among the nation’s leaders.

The nearly three-hour service at the Washington National Cathedral was a remarkable show of defiance against a president McCain openly defied in life as the antithesis of the American spirit of service to something greater than any individual.

Standing near McCain’s flag-draped casket and with Trump’s daughter in the audience, Meghan McCain delivered a broadside against the uninvited president without mentioning his name.

“We gather here to mourn the passing of American greatness — the real thing, not cheap rhetoric from men who will never come near the sacrifice he gave so willingly, nor the opportunistic appropriation of those who lived lives of comfort and privilege while he suffered and served,” she said, her voice first choking back tears. Then, it rose in anger.

“The America of John McCain,” she added, with a reference to Trump’s trademark phrase, “has no need to be made great again because America was always great.”

The audience of Washington power players erupted in applause.

“So much of our politics, our public life, our public discourse can seem small and mean and petty, trafficking in bombast and insult and phony controversies and manufactured outrage,” Obama said in a not-so-veiled nod to Trump. “It’s a politics that pretends to be brave and tough but in fact is born in fear. John called on us to be bigger than that. He called on us to be better than that.”

 

The passing of “greatness” remark is absolutely over the top, ridiculous, laughable and untrue. John McCain did not finish strong or valiantly. He was not the old soldier just fading away. He was petty, vindictive, nasty, insulting, just as he had been during his too many years in Congress. Many Arizonans attempted to recall McCain from office several years ago and for good reason. He was more civil to Democrats Tom Daschle and Barack Obama than to many hard-working, dedicated conservative base members of his own party. To many of his constituents his representation in Washington was invisible.

The Machiavellian McCain was so petty that he once spent nearly $20,000 just to get rid of a conservative chairman in his home legislative district. By God’s grace, he failed in that attempt! He was an inarticulate, ineffective senator who did little to endear himself to the many millions of Americans he regularly insulted. The last two times I saw McCain speak in person, he called loyal Republicans “idiots,” trashed the GOP’s pro-life platform and criticized a group that invited him to speak. McCain destroyed his in-party primary candidates with scorn, vicious mudslinging and disingenuous advertising. For him or his family to speak high and mighty words about civility and greatness is beyond hypocritical! It is insulting.

This past week saw the amazing end of the McCain machine and it’s our hope that the Arizona Republican Party recovers from the stranglehold he held over it and emerges with new, stronger, more respectful and more professional and inspiring leadership. We saw McCain pass from this earth and we saw Martha McSally given the nomination by Republicans to replace him in the Senate. Jeff Flake was a hand-picked puppet; his predecessor Jon Kyl was also controlled by McCain. At long last we are now free of the shackles of the McCain political machine and we pray for better, stronger Republican leadership from our emerging new representation in the U.S. Senate.

We demand that no one named “McCain” be named to finish out his term. We have had enough and it’s time to move on from the McCain Machine.

Riggs’ Lead in Supt. of Public Instruction Primary Down to 575 Votes

As of Saturday morning, 100 percent of the precincts have reported. More than 1 million votes have been counted, and turnout is up to 30 percent. In the ever-tightening State Supt. of Public Instruction race, Franks Riggs’ lead (21.9 percent) has dropped to 575 votes over Bob Branch (21.8 percent). Incumbent Diane Douglas is at 21.37 percent and trails Riggs by 2,771 votes.

In the Arizona Senate District 12 race, Eddie Farnsworth’s lead over Jimmy Lindblom is now 783 votes. Farnsworth leads by 3 percent.

Clear-cut Republican Primary winners include:

Doug Ducey, governor

Martha McSally, Senate

Steve Gaynor, Secretary of State

Kimberly Yee, State Treasurer

Wendy Rogers, Congressional District 1

Lea Marquez Peterson, Congressional District 2

Nick Pierson, Congressional District 3

Debbie Lesko, Congressional District 8

Stephen Ferrara, Congressional District 9

Incumbent Congressmen Andy Biggs, David Schweikert and Paul Gosar each ran unopposed in the primary.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich and State Mining Inspector Joe Hart both ran unopposed.

Justin Olson and Rodney Glassman won the GOP’s two spots for the general election for Arizona Corporation Commission.

Please check back in the days to follow as the vote-counting continues.

 

2018 Arizona Primary Recommendations

Preferred and Acceptable Candidates

Governor — Doug Ducey

Attorney General — Mark Brnovich

Secretary of State — Steve Gaynor

State Treasurer — Kimberly Yee

State Superintendent of Instruction — Dr. Bob Branch

Arizona Corporation Commission — Tom Forese, Justin Olson, Rodney Glassman, Jim O’Connor, Eric Sloan

State Mine Inspector — Joe Hart

Congress

U.S. Senate — Martha McSally, Dr. Kelli Ward

House of Representatives

District 1 — Wendy Rogers, Steve Smith

District 2 — TBD

District 3 — TBD

District 4 — Paul Gosar

District 5 — Andy Biggs

District 6 — David Schweikert

District 7 —

District 8 — Debbie Lesko

District 9 — Dave Giles

State Senate

D1–

D2–

D3–

D4–

D5–

D6–Sylvia Allen

D7–

D8–

D9–

D10–

D11–Venden Vince Leach

D12–Eddie Farnsworth

D13–Brent Backus, Sine Kerr

D14–David Gowan, Drew John

D15–David Farnsworth

D16–

D17–J.D. Mesnard

D18–

D19–

D20–Paul Boyer

D21–Rick Gray

D22–David Livingston

D23–Ben Toma,

D24–

D25–

D26–

D27–

D28–

D29–

D30–

State House

D1–Noel Campbell, David Stringer

D2–

D3–

D4–

D5–Leo Biasucci, Paul Moseley

D6–Walter Blackman, Bob Thorpe

D7–Doyel Shamley

D8–David Cook

D9–Ana Henderson

D10–

D11–Mark Finchem

D12–Warren Peterson, Nick Myers

D13–Tim Dunn, Darin Mitchell

D14–Gail Griffin, Becky Nutt

D15–John Allen, Nancy Barto

D16–Lisa Godzich, Stephen Kridler

D17–Nora Ellen, Jeff Weninger

D18–Donald Hawker, Jill Norgaard

D19–

D20–Paul Boyer

D21–Tony Rivero

D22–Frank Carroll

D23–John Kavanaugh, Jay Lawrence

D24–

D25–

D26–

D27–

D28–Maria Syms

D29–

D30–