Autograph Hound

Derrick Lee is the most powerful political figure you've never heard of

In jeans and a faded polo shirt, at first glance Lee mixes in with the circulators waiting to collect checks. Lee points to brochures posted on the wall advertising a women's expo and some festivals this weekend and says to one guy, "Work these events this weekend, man!"

"If Mother Nature lets me," the man replies.

"No excuses!" Lee says, an obvious mock threat. He gets along with these guys, who tease him about his newly streaked hair. He tells them he used to be a punk rocker. Close to the truth, he says; he used to play guitar in a band. As the day wears on, someone says something about needing a drink.

Derrick Lee: "I was really rude to people [who circulated petitions] before I ever went out and gathered."
Derrick Lee: "I was really rude to people [who circulated petitions] before I ever went out and gathered."
Derrick Lee: "I was really rude to people [who circulated petitions] before I ever went out and gathered."
Casey McKee
Derrick Lee: "I was really rude to people [who circulated petitions] before I ever went out and gathered."

"I don't drink," Lee replies. "I should, but I don't."

Lee's Mormon. Is he religious? "Yeah, I guess. I try to be."

He says his religion guides him in choosing which initiatives he'll take on. He gives himself a lot of leeway, saying the only two issues he absolutely won't do are pro-abortion and pro-right to die.

Ultimately, Lee says, he's only putting the measures on the ballot.

"The people have a right to vote on this stuff. Put it before the voters and let the voters vote their conscience. Who am I to try to decide whether a person should vote on it or not vote on it?"

Contact Amy Silverman at 602-229-8443 or online at amy.silverman@newtimes.com

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