Update: We spoke with AJ News editor Ed Barker and Steve Kizer, director of Pinal County Elections Department.
"Paul Babeu is going to run for a second term as sheriff," AJ News Editor Ed Barker wrote in a column this week. "Yep, he's fallen from grace in the Congressional race and now has his sights lowered to re-election. Expect the announcement soon. Perhaps this week."
Babeu hasn't responded to Barker's request for comment.
We chatted with Barker and, no, he wasn't giving up his sources, but he said "it doesn't take a genius to figure out" that it's over for Babeu.
Barker notes that Babeu has until May 31 to gather 274 signatures to put him on the August Republican Primary ballot for sheriff.
Steve Kizer, director of Pinal County Elections Department, tells us that before a candidate can begin collecting signatures to run for elected office, they must form a PAC (political-action committee).
And that's usually how we get a preview of who intends to run for elected office.
Since Babeu never closed out the "Paul Babeu for Sheriff" PAC he formed when he was running for sheriff in 2008, he could be actively collecting signatures now.
It's just a waiting game.
Just as we pointed out that Babeu's campaign contributions have collapsed, Barker also wrote that Babeu was able to raise $144,000 in the first quarter of this year.
But, he said, "The bad news for Babeu is that he raised almost all of that amount before his boyfriend dragged him kicking and screaming from the closet in February. After being saddled with an investigation for allegedly threatening his gay lover with deportation if he revealed their secret, the once steely-eyed champion of truth, justice and the American way raised less than $7,000 in March."
Despite the complete fundraising flop in March -- Babeu's delusional campaign team reported on his website on April 17 that Babeu was "well ahead of his nearest opponent" in fundraising and that "since announcing his candidacy last October, Babeu has never trailed in fundraising."
In March: Gosar, $80,000. Babeu, $6,700.
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We'd say that is trailing. Far far behind.
Another observation of Babeu's campaign came from someone named "Haywood," who posted on newszap.com what has been obvious to most -- except perhaps Babeu:
Haywood wrote, in part:
Times They Are A-Changin' What's a-happening with Paul Babeu? Do you know? Does Babeu even know?
A few things to notice. On May 1, the deep-pocketed national Club for Growth endorsed Ron Gould for CD-4 who Babeu and [Babeu's campaign manager Chris] DeRose keep claiming is the trailing candidate.
National Rifle Association. What happened with the NRA and their rising star, Mr. Babeu? Babeu even signed up as a lifetime member.
Over the last two years, NRA News helped in building Paul Babeu politically and interviewed him frequently. He was their go to man on anything relating to the border and immigration and especially on Holder and Fast & Furious. NRA even made high-profile videos with Team Babeu and his studs in the desert.
But something must have changed late last year with NRA. (no tears, please, as the change was pre-Jose)
Paul Gosar has now been regularly interviewed for the same topics on NRANews' The Daily News and Cam and Company for months. And Paul Babeu hasn't been. What? They want to listen to a dentist instead of a troubled school marm?