Hugh Hallman Still Not Endorsed by Tempe Cops and Firefighters, Despite Claiming So (Again)
UPDATE: Hallman's folks respond, at the bottom of this post.
Although New Times called out then-Tempe Mayor Hugh Hallman for touting an apparently fake endorsement from the city's firemen and cops, we have not called out potential gubernatorial candidate Hugh Hallman for using an apparently fake endorsement from Tempe's firemen and cops.
Now that Hallman's recycling the claim while he's considering a run for governor, we'll point out once more that it's bogus.
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It wasn't really a sexy allegation, but a Tempe resident by the name of Mario Martinez pointed out to us back in May that then-Mayor Hallman's website claimed that he elected with the endorsement of "Tempe firefighters and police."
A letter from City Manager Charlie Meyer to Hallman, obtained by Martinez, illustrated the issue with that.
"If, in fact, you received an endorsement from Tempe fire and/or police employees (in their official capacities) during your 2004 campaign for Mayor, the employees who made the endorsements likely acted in violation of [city personnel rules]," Meyer wrote. "However, the City is not aware of any employees doing so during the 2004 election season."
So, we called Hallman on it in a post on this blog, and the claim was scrubbed from his website.
Then, last week, Hallman announced on his website that he was considering a run for governor.
"Over the next few months, I will be traveling the state of Arizona to speak with and listen to people from all walks of life about what's really important to them in their state government, and how we can address our priorities successfully," part of Hallman's statement says. "At that time, I will make a final decision about pursuing elected office. I have one particular elected office very clearly in mind -- the office of Governor of Arizona."
Martinez gave us a call yesterday, and pointed us to what else is posted on Hallman's website now.
"Hugh is a longtime activist, volunteer and lifelong resident of Tempe," the website says at the time of this post. "After receiving endorsements from The Arizona Republic, Tempe firefighters and police and dozens of community residents, Tempe voters elected Hugh mayor in the March 2004 primary election."
UPDATE: One of the staffers for Hallman's exploratory run says he made the error in Hallman's bio. Tom Evans, who's worked on previous Hallman campaigns, chalks it up to a "poorly constructed sentence."
"While he was indeed endorsed by The Arizona Republic, the Fraternal Order of Police and numerous community leaders in 2004, he was endorsed by the same groups AND the Professional Firefighters of Arizona in 2008....Any error was not intentional."
Documentation of the cop and firefighter union endorsement was provided, so that part checks out, but New Times readers may recall that the implied endorsement of city workers was the issue that started this whole thing.
So, in case the claim gets scrubbed again, the screenshot is below: