Feathered Bastard

Joe Arpaio Avoids Getting "Leid" by Anti-Birther Activists Ticked that He Sent a Deputy to Hawaii

Wearing flip-flops, grass skirts and Hawaiian leis, with surfboards in tow and the pungent odor of sunscreen trailing behind them, around 15-to-20 members of Citizens for a Better Arizona stormed the 19th Floor of Phoenix's Wells Fargo Building this afternoon, briefly taking over the entranceway to Sheriff Joe Arpaio's tony executive offices.

The group's gripe? The fact that Sheriff Joe had dispatched one of his deputies to Hawaii as security for Mike Zullo, a top doofus from Arpaio's "cold case posse," who's still "investigating" crackpot claims that President Barack Obama's birth certificate is a phony.

You'll recall that Arpaio held a press conference in March to announce that his posse investigators had found "probable cause" that Obama's birth certificate is a forgery, despite the slew of Hawaiian officials, both Republican and Democrat, who have averred otherwise

Arpaio has repeatedly told the press that this birther farce won't cost the taxpayers dime one, though we now know that the bill for the birther investigation so far is $40,000. Even if that dough comes from posse funds, the deputy Arpaio sent to Hawaii is on the clock, and Arpaio's office picked up the tab for Zullo and the deputy's trip.

Supposedly the posse will pay the county back for this absurd outlay of cash. Riiight. In any case, CBA and its fearless leader Randy Parraz figured they needed to hold a luau right in front of Arpaio's swank digs to protest this shameless expenditure of public funds.

"He's not running a private corporation," Parraz said at one point, referring to Arpaio. "He should send us [to Hawaii]. We're all qualified to go to Hawaii and do nothing."

Up on the 19th Floor, some demonstrators laid out beach towels and got comfy, while others sang songs and practiced their hula moves, all while Parraz jousted with a receptionist via the office intercom. He demanded that the sheriff show himself, or that one of his flunkies come out.

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Stephen is a former staff writer and columnist at Phoenix New Times.
Contact: Stephen Lemons