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Thursday, December 12, 2013

AG Horne's attempt to silence critics rejected


Group legally educating public about 
illegal campaign contributions, hit and
run accident, alleged affair with mistress
Mesa, Arizona--When the Arizona Public Integrity Alliance (AZPIA) began airing commercials critical of Tom Horne’s behavior on November 8, 2012, Horne immediately dispatched intimidating letters to the media outlet broadcasting the commercials and filed a campaign finance complaint against the AZPIA.
Horne then sued the AZPIA.  (Horne also sued Jaime Molera in 2002 and the Committee for Justice and Fairness in 2010.  Horne lost both the 2002 and the 2010 lawsuits.)  Horne’s official spokesman further called the AZPIA “cowards” and “liars” on the record.  Even after Horne used the resources of the Arizona Attorney General’s Office to retaliate against his critics, the AZPIA has continued to air commercials and send mail discussing Horne’s ethical lapses to thousands of Arizonans and their legislators.
Now, the Arizona Secretary of State has concluded that Horne’s campaign finance complaint against the AZPIA--portions of which were literally copied and pasted from Horne’s 2010 campaign finance complaint against an earlier Horne critic--was meritless.  The AZPIA submitted to the Arizona Secretary of State a letter responding to Horne’s allegations.  After reviewing the allegations and the AZPIA’s response, the Arizona Secretary of State’s office completely rejected Horne’s baseless claims:

“The response [from AZPIA] refuted the allegation that AZPIA is a political committee….  There is no evidence that AZPIA is a political committee [as alleged in the complaint]. Therefore, after careful review of the complaint and response, we find...there is insufficient basis to find reasonable cause that AZPIA violated campaign finance laws.”

AZPIA is educating the public about the nearly $400,000 in illegal donations to Horne’s 2010 campaign and the fact that, during a 2012 investigation of Horne’s campaign finance violations, the FBI witnessed Horne hit a car and flee the scene without contacting the car’s owner.  The FBI agents trailing Horne said that at the time of the accident, Horne was with a woman whom the FBI said was Horne’s mistress.

AZPIA Executive Vice President Tyler Montague said, “Horne is trying to become the new Andrew Thomas.  Something must be done to preserve the reputation and integrity of our law enforcement system.”
Arizona Public Integrity Alliance (AZPIA) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting principles of integrity and accountability for government and elected officials.  

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