Friday, August 28, 2009
Supervisors successfully control court decisions they're involved in by giving court its $340 million new tower
You have to give them credit for savviness. The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors has bought off the judges by giving them a state-of-the-art new $340 million court tower in the midst of a recession, while other county agencies including law enforcement are forced by the Supervisors to cut their budgets by 15%. Judges will receive penthouse offices in this Taj Mahal. This deal has made the Supervisors virtually untouchable in the courts - lawsuits against them by other county officials, including criminal prosecutions, go nowhere. When Supervisor Don Stapley was indicted by the County Attorney's office on 118 counts of financial fraud, Presiding Judge Barbara Mundell called a judge out of retirement who despises the County Attorney's Office to handle the prosecution! That judge, Kenneth Fields, a Democrat predictably dismissed 51 of the 118 counts earlier this week.
And just yesterday, another judge Mundell pulled out of retirement for favors, Donald Daughton, a Democrat of course, upheld the Supervisors' power grab to fire the County Attorney from representing them in civil cases and hire their own group of civil attorneys.
What is also working to the Supervisors' advantage is years of judicial appointments by liberal Democrat governor Janet Napolitano. The judiciary is now dominated by left-leaning judges who despise the likes of conservative county officials like Arpaio, Thomas, and Hoskins (we'd mention the county superintendent and assessor but they were already chased out of office by the Supervisors and have since been replaced). Wonder if Sheriff Arpaio regrets endorsing Janet Napolitano for governor back in 2002? His endorsement no doubt put her over the top. Now her liberal judges rule against him time and time again.
Our tax dollars are paying for this court tower and these judges to defend the Supervisors. Every day there is another story in the newspaper about the Supervisors' scandals. They are at war with almost every other elected county official. Notably, the other county officials aren't at war with each other, only the Supervisors. It is clear who is causing the problems and it needs to stop. Fortunately, we have heard that there will be some real challengers running against these crooks next election.