Out of 43 Maricopa County Superior Court judges, four have last names that sound Hispanic.
It doesn't seem like a coincidence that those four happen to have ended up among the six worst vote-getters in last night's election.
Scanning over the vote counts today, it looks like Maricopa County residents -- voting in secret in ballot booths or at home -- showed a discriminatory side they may or may not show in public.
With 99 percent of precincts reporting, the four judges and the percentage of "no" votes they've received so far are:
* Jose Padilla -- 44.75 * Lisa Daniel Flores -- 40.98 * Connie Contes -- 39.58 * Jeanne Marie Garcia -- 38.09
Though he safely made retention, Padilla had the most "no" votes of all 43 judges.
Padilla was followed by John Hannah as the two worst vote-getters. Hannah had 43.89 percent of "no" votes.
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Judge Thomas LeClair also landed in the bottom six with 39.89 percent "no" votes. Perhaps the bigots checking "no" on all the Hispanic names thought "LeClair" sounded too foreign, too -- maybe even French.
It's not even like politics would explain everything. Contes was appointed by former Republican Governor Jane Hull, for example, though it's true the other three Hispanic-ish-named judges were appointed by former Democratic Governor Jan Napolitano.
Some conservatives seem to like a few of the Napolitano appointees, judging by a voters' guide to the judges published by the conservative blog site, Sonoran Alliance a couple of weeks ago. Sonoran Alliance suggested voting for none of the apparently Hispanic judges (Flores isn't actually Hispanic -- that's her married name) but encouraged voters to select LeClaire, a Governor Jan Brewer appointee. So again, politics doesn't entirely explain the bad results for the Spanish-sounding judges.
Racism and bigotry would explain the situation. Thousands of Maricopa County voters apparently have a system when looking at the names of all those judges they've never heard of -- vote against the "Mexican."