After being run out of three venues in Phoenix last month by activists, a fundraiser for recalled, former state Senate President Russell Pearce has finally found a home at a local hotel run by one of his supporters.
According to an item on the conservative Sonoran Alliance blog, Pearce and his ethically-challenged ex-Justice of the Peace brother Lester will be having a co-fundraiser Saturday, July 21, at the Holiday Inn Hotel and Suites in Fountain Hills from 4-8 p.m.
Lester, who comes off as bright as a hockey puck, is running for Maricopa County Supervisor, a prospect that would be truly frightening if he had a snowball's chance in Yuma. Russell, of course, is attempting a comeback in the Legislative District 25 GOP primary, where he's facing off against nice-guy entrepreneur Bob Worsley.
"No charge to attend," reads the notice. "Snacks included!"
Sound desperate? Well, Russell Pearce is, having raised a little less than $3,000 from the start of January to the end of May, as compared to the nearly $67,000 in receipts for Worsley during the same time period.
Pearce has been forced to re-use the campaign signs from his disastrous recall campaign last year, and he's been begging for a debate from Worsley, who is acting the part of front runner and ignoring him.
In June, a Pearce event was booted from three venues in one day after activists dogged each spot with the promise of protests and boycotts. Which is likely why Pearce is having the event in the remote burg of Fountain Hills, where rabid supporter Gary Lvov manages a Holiday Inn, thus helping Pearce avoid the humiliation of again having his fundraiser canceled.
Lvov donated money to Pearce's anti-recall effort in 2011, and this year, he's donated both to Pearce's LD 25 bid and to the campaign purse of Pearce-lackey, state Representative John Kavanagh.
A fanatic worshipper of Sheriff Joe Arpaio as well, Lvov, who says he hails from Russia originally, comes across in his videos as an amped-up Amway salesman high on right-wing Kool Aid.
However, Lvov's enthusiasm for wingnut politics doesn't translate into successful fundraisers. A May event for Pearce at the same Fountain Hills Holiday Inn was sparsely attended, so much so that in a YouTube video of the $25 dollar per person soiree, Lvov makes lame excuses for the lack of attendees.
At least from my head count from one of the wide shots in the video, it looks like 12 to 15 people showed up. No wonder the snacks are free this time around.
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On another note, Pearce is apparently too busy politickin' to keep his Ban Amnesty Now-sponsored radio show afloat on KFNX 1100 AM. Pearce's Monday 7 p.m. time slot has been replaced with "KFNX programming," and KFNX business manager Matt Battaglia told me via e-mail that BAN and Pearce "stopped doing the show the end of May 2012," and that he did not know if they would return.
Similarly, Ban Amnesty Now's website seems dormant with its most recent front page entry being from April. Guess that "buy-cott" against New Times ain't doin' so well as fundraising fodder for the bigot group.
Ah, it couldn't happen to a nicer nativist named Pearce. One caveat though: Victory for Worsley in LD 25 is not assured. Pearce has a higher name recognition, and this is a Republican primary, wherein old white people who are afraid of Mexicans religiously vote. So Pearce the brown-basher has an edge in that sense, if not in finances or endorsements.
Therefore, the anti-Pearce forces that trounced the Mesa bigot in 2011 must re-unite like the SuperFriends of old against the Legion of Doom, and crush this revanchist foray into the dust. Of all the primary contests ongoing, this is the one that counts the most, and offers the prospect of preventing Pearce from ever re-entering the Legislature as anything more than a visitor.