Regular readers know that we like to talk about local politics in a tough but fair way; we believe that society is better served with both major parties being functional. The Maricopa County Democratic Party went through some serious bouts of chaos and malfeasance, but after an upheaval in leadership seems to be on the right path. Now it seems as though the Maricopa County Republican Party (MCRP) may be going on the same path.
We recently wrote about a bombshell revelation from within the party: the Maricopa County Republican Committee voted to give a jaw-dropping $250,000 to a project that would allow volunteers to “clean up the voter rolls”. The group that would be the recipient was co-founded by MCRP Vice Chair Shelby Busch. That quarter of a million dollars was more than the MCRP had raised in total over the last two years and represented a stunning case of blatant self-dealing on the surface. Enough people got wind of the plan to thwart it and bring attention to the brazenness of it, and it was stopped in its tracks. However, the consequences may just be beginning.
Recently the leadership board for the Legislative District 24 Republicans officially put their foot down, and in a scathing letter announced that they recently voted to oust the majority of leadership at the county level…with an 18-1 vote. While the district, which covers a more traditionally-Democratic area of west Phoenix, isn’t exactly a powerhouse in local Republican politics, it likely points to a more widespread issue.
Change in the insular and self-dealing world of politics rarely comes from big, sweeping statements. Kari Lake or Donald Trump will not be the ones to loudly and proudly call for change. Much like the issues at the Maricopa County Democratic Party, change came from a ticked-off precinct committeeperson (PC), a truth-telling Treasurer, and a humble blog willing and able to speak truth to power.
We are seeing a similar uprising with the MCRP, this time starting with a few disgruntled PCs and a nearly unanimous vote in a frankly irrelevant district. After all, those with the least to lose often have the most to say, and the LD24 Republicans fit that bill.
In order to round out the chorus and hopefully apply similar pressure for change, we join the chorus of the need for change. Anyone who was involved in the attempt to divert a quarter of a million dollars towards the Quixotic attempt to “cleans the voter rolls” must resign from their positions, as should anyone who actively spoke out in support of it whilst willingly ignoring the very obvious conflict of interest.
We are all best served with two well-functioning local parties bereft of self-dealing and fraud. Everyone (most of all local Republicans) will be better off if the local Republican party purges itself of these bad actors.