Joe Arpaio Opponent Mike Stauffer Suddenly Uninvited to Candidate Forum

Less than 24 hours away from a candidate forum in Sun City West that was supposed to host both ​Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio and his opponent Mike Stauffer, the Stauffer campaign tells New Times that he's been officially uninvited.

If you're a fan of coincidences, get this -- Stauffer's campaign got the call from the Sun City West Republican Club that he was being uninvited from the forum about an hour after we called Arpaio's campaign manager asking if the sheriff planned to attend.

Arpaio's campaign manager Chad Willems said this morning that he didn't know if the sheriff would be attending the forum, but just confirmed minutes ago that Arpaio will be there tomorrow.

According to Stauffer's campaign, the candidate was uninvited because the club decided -- the day before the forum -- not to allow Independents to participate.

Stauffer announced in October that he was switching his party affiliation from Republican to Independent, which gives him the opportunity to avoid a GOP primary against Arpaio.

It's not as if Stauffer had invited himself to the forum, either, as we're told he received an official invitation to participate.

Stauffer's campaign was billing the event as the first time Stauffer and Arpaio will "share [the] podium," but Arpaio now gets to carry on his trend of ignoring Stauffer or pretending like he doesn't exist.

KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Matthew Hendley
Contact: Matthew Hendley