Michael Monti Leads Mark Mitchell in Race for Tempe Mayor After Election Day

The relentless attacks on Mark Mitchell seem to have worked out in Michael Monti's favor in the race for Tempe mayor, as Monti was up by one point after people hit the ballot box yesterday.

There still are some votes left to count -- provisional ballots and people who brought their early-voting ballots with them to the polls -- but Monti's lead was 222 votes, according to the latest tally sent out by the city at 8:26 p.m. Tuesday.

Since Mitchell got more votes than Monti in the March primary, one would expect that the slime was a factor in this round of voting.

First, the Monti campaign pulled out records of a 1993 encounter between Mitchell and Tempe cops, as Mitchell (probably with a sigh) said, "Monti's really hitting the bottom of the barrel on this one."

That was not, in fact, the bottom of the barrel.

Mitchell was then hit with what he called "what may be the most repulsive last-minute attack in Arizona history."

(Seventy-six percent of our readers agreed with Mitchell in our unscientific poll.)

The right-wing Sonoran Alliance blog released the report from the Phoenix Police Department, in which a woman claims Mitchell engaged in some sexual activities with her when she was a kid, and Mitchell was somewhere between the ages of 12 and 14 -- back in 1983. She had just brought up her accusations to police within the past few months.

Former Tempe Mayor/Congressman Harry Mitchell even came out of the woodwork in support of his son, and against the Monti campaign/supporters after all the allegations came out, saying, "I have never been so disgusted. Never."

Monti and his PR pal Jason Rose claim they have nothing to do with it.

Rose Monti actually put out a statement saying it was "sad and shameful" of Mitchell to suggest this had anything to do with them.

As for the open Tempe city council seat, it appears Kolby Granville's going to take that one over Dick Foreman -- Granville's up by more than 2,000 votes -- although both managed to run campaigns that didn't involve the phrase "sexual abuse."

According to the city, "final unofficial election results" will come out some time after 5 p.m. on Friday.

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Matthew Hendley
Contact: Matthew Hendley