Arizona Capitol

Ethics Complaint Against State Senator Rich Crandall Tossed Straight in the Garbage

See also: Rich Crandall Leaves a Somewhat Angry Voicemail for Fellow State Senator

That didn't take long: state Senator Brenda Barton's ethics complaint against fellow Republican Senator Rich Crandall was thrown straight in the garbage (or possibly the recycle bin).

Barton filed the complaint because Crandall left a mean voicemail on her phone, and warned Barton that she "better not try to run any education legislation whatsoever [in] the next two years" -- a threat that could come true, since he's the chairman of the Senate Education Committee.

Considering that recent ethics complaint legislators have include a public domestic-violence incident involving one lawmaker, and another lawmaker accused of trying to trade sex for votes and generally acting like a complete asshat, it would seem like an ethics complaint over an angry phone call is a bit much.

Indeed, according to the Associated Press, "Ethics Committee Chair Linda Gray says she dismissed Barton's complaint because it would set a bad precedent and be a waste of time for lawmakers to file ethics complaints when committee chairmen don't hear bills."

This whole feud between Barton and Crandall started over a campaign-sign feud (as so much drama does), in which there are photos of two women taking down a sign for Republican state Representative John Fillmore, and replacing it with one for Crandall. One of those ladies turned out to be Crandall's daughter.

Crandall and Fillmore are primary opponents this year, and there were conflicting accounts of what happened during the sign incident.

The girls apparently replaced the Fillmore sign after being confronted, but it's interesting who confronted them -- Barton.

According to Fillmore's account of events, he got a call from Barton -- whose district is in the Payson area, but was apparently staying with her mother-in-law in Mesa -- and Barton said she just saw this happening while she was driving down the street in Mesa.

Fillmore claims his sign has been there for some time, while Crandall's daughter and the other woman claimed Crandall's sign was there first, and Fillmore's sign had apparently replaced it.

At some point after that -- and after the pictures of the women hit the Internet -- Crandall left a voicemail for Barton, saying she "better not try to run any education legislation whatsoever [in] the next two years."

The AP was also told that Crandall apologized to Barton for the voicemail, which you can listen to in our previous post on the matter.