Feathered Bastard

Russell Pearce Wants $260,000 of Your Money, and His Flunkies Want to Give It to Him (w/Update)

Remember when I informed you of the trial balloon being floated by toadies of recalled state Senate President Russell Pearce, lickspittles who long to give their lord and master more than $260,000 of taxpayer funds because he had to endure a recall election, one he lost by a humiliating 12 points?

Well, it's no longer a trial balloon, it's a full-fledged push from Pearce's proxies in the state Senate and House, who claim that the Arizona Constitution requires them to grant Pearce the $260K.

Why, that's an argument an unabashed Pearce is making himself, telling a Capitol Times reporter today that he would have to give "serious consideration" to the proposal, and that state legislators have a "duty" to offer it to him.

A "duty"? Really? Isn't this why Pearce was recalled, because of such outrageous arrogance, and contempt for the public and the law? 

The effort to help Pearce cash in and recoup money that was donated to him during the recall election by lobbyists, political committees and individual donors is being spearheaded by two Republicans, state Representative Steve Montenegro and state Senator Steve Smith.

Montenegro and Smith, as well as other Pearce lackeys in the Republican Party, have been making this massive payoff a condition of a budget deal with Governor Jan Brewer. (See update below.)

Indeed, before the GOPers buried the hatchet with Brewer and began working with her again, they engaged in talks with Democrats over a possible budget agreement. 

Arizona Senate Minority Leader David Schapira told me that the Rs wanted to make Pearce's $260K-plus welfare check a requirement of any Democrat-Republican deal, an idea still alive and well in the state Senate.

As you might expect, it's a proposal Schapira finds repugnant.

"My understanding is that this new budget will include no new money for kids care," he noted. "Zero dollars for soft capital to buy new textbooks and computers, which haven't been purchased in three years in our school system. Zero dollars for those things, yet Russell Pearce gets $262,000. Talk about misplaced priorities."

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