Feathered Bastard

Russell Pearce Fundraiser To Be Protested Friday

Anti-Russell Pearce activists are set to protest both a Friday, January 7 fundraiser for the state Senate President-elect, and the opening day of business for the Arizona Legislature on Monday, January 10, when Pearce will take his seat as the Dark Lord of Sand Land.

The Friday demonstration, which is reportedly being spearheaded by the Phoenix human rights' group Puente, will be near a private home in Paradise Valley, where a fundraiser to "honor" Pearce is being held. The new Facebook site "Pearce Watch" is heavily promoting the protest.

As I reported in December, there are more than 70 members of the "host committee" for the event, which reads like a who's who of lobbyists and special-interest group shills, everyone from Mark Spencer, president of the Phoenix Law Enforcement Association to Chuck Coughlin, simultaneously Governor Jan Brewer's Svengali and pimp for the private prisons giant Corrections Corporation of America.

Also on the host committee is Genevra Richardson, a lobbyist with the public affairs group Ziemba-Waid, a traditional supporter of Democratic politicians and causes. I hope someone snags a photo of her arriving to this obscene Pearce-party.

Coming just days before the legislative session begins, I think it's fair to call this fundraiser a "shakedown," one lobbyists will attend to stay in Pearce's good graces, no doubt. Suggested donation for the event is $250.

It's all perfectly legal, of course, but no less gross because of that fact. Pearce is the most powerful man in the Legislature, and those kowtowing to him are also kowtowing to his nativist agenda.

Unfortunately, I won't be able to attend due to a prior commitment, so I'm hoping folks such as videographer Dennis Gilman document Puente's action against this wing-nut wingding. The protest is scheduled from 4p.m. to 7 p.m., according to Pearce Watch. The address is listed on the flier above. I'm assuming the demonstrators will be across the street.

Click, here, for more info on Facebook. And remember, keep it peaceful, people.

The Monday event is being organized by former U.S. Senate hopeful and pro-immigrant firebrand Randy Parraz and the group Citizens for a Better Arizona. Its theme is, "Hold Russell Pearce Accountable," and it's scheduled to take place from Noon to 1 p.m. at the state Capitol near the state Senate lawn.

You can get all the details on the CBA event at the Three Sonorans blog. I'm hoping to be on hand for this one. So see ya there.

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

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