Tom Horne Tailspin: Poll Shows Horne One Point Behind Mark Brnovich, Horne Aide Garrett Archer Resigns

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Guess who's having the worst week ever?

Add to Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne's many woes -- including dueling scandals, local and federal law enforcement probes, and a $400K ad buy by a conservative group demanding his resignation -- a poll of likely GOP voters, showing Horne trailing his primary challenger, former state gaming director Mark Brnovich, by one point.

Granted the poll, done by Magellan Strategies on behalf of the group Conservative Leadership for Arizona, also shows that 35 percent of those voters are undecided.

Still, as an incumbent who has done his best to placate the far right, Horne should be way ahead of Brnovich in any poll imaginable, if he were not up to his ears in controversy.

The poll reveals that Horne has 94 percent name ID. Forty-nine percent of respondents have a negative view of the guy.

In other words, Rs know Horne all too well.

(BTW, CLA is backing Doug Ducey in the Arizona Republican primary for governor. Guess who leads the gubernatorial pack in this poll? If you picked Ducey, collect your fruit basket at the door.)

In other news, the Arizona Republic reports that AG staffer Garrett Archer, named in a sworn affidavit by ex-AG staffer Sarah Beattie as doing campaign work on state time, has resigned his post as a policy analyst with the AG's office.

Horne looks like he needs an infusion of embalming fluid

Horne's spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham denied Archer's departure was connected to the latest scandal.

"Garrett leaving has been in the works for 6 weeks now, as he and his wife are expecting their first baby," she wrote. "He is going to do independent consulting so that he has the flexibility to work from home and prepare for the baby. This has zero to do with the latest claims by Beattie."

Grisham said Archer had given her permission to speak on his behalf. She also denied rumors that Archer had been talking to the FBI.

Horne didn't do himself any favors yesterday by going on the "attack" against Beattie and Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk, who reinstated her order that Horne and outreach director Kathleen Winn pay back $400,000 in campaign contributions.

(Note: The Polk news didn't break till late in the day on the 14th. Magellan states that interviews for the poll were done on May 13 and 14.)

FOX 10 News | myfoxphoenix.com Horne, jonesing for a dirt nap

Appearing on various TV news outlets, Horne looked like death warmed over, dodged questions about once having his mistress on the payroll, and occasionally lapsed into silence.

Reminiscent of Captain Queeg in The Caine Mutiny. All Horne needed were ball bearings to play with.

Will Horne last through the primary? Sheesh, I'm not sure he'll last through this weekend.

Got a tip for The Bastard? Send it to: Stephen Lemons.

Follow Valley Fever on Twitter at @ValleyFeverPHX. Follow Stephen Lemons on Twitter at @StephenLemons.

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