Arizona Eagletarian

Arizona Eagletarian

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Who exactly does Catherine Miranda represent in the Arizona House?

From: Catherine Miranda <catherinemiranda42@gmail.com>
Date: January 6, 2014 at 10:52:39 PM MST
To: [76 specifically listed lobbyists, individually to their email addresses]
Subject: Reminder Fundraiser January 8th!
Good Evening!

I have spoken to most of you or have left a voicemail to remind you about my Wednesday, January 8th fundraiser. This is going to be a tough race and I'm really going to need your help raising funds for my campaign. If you need any assistance you may call me at 602-672-4298. As most of you know I am a moderate, prochamber, prohealthcare Democrat. I hope to have more lunch meetings with you so we can keep each other updated and our relationships strong! Please keep on your schedule two dates:

MIRANDA-MEZA FUNDRAISER
January 8th WEDNESDAY
5:00 P.M. at ALEXI'S GRILL
3550 N. Central Avenue #120
Phoenix, Az 85012


If you are not able to make this day or time, I will be having an early morning fundraiser the following day Thursday, January 9th at:

SQUASH BLOSSOM DOWNTOWN
January 9th THURSDAY
7:30 A.M. - 9:30 A.M.
705 N. 1st St. Phoenix, Az

....OR YOU CAN DONATE TO MY ONLINE DONATIONS LINK

OR MAIL TO:

MIRANDA FOR SENATE
21 E. St. Charles Ave
Phoenix, Az 85042

Thank you for your support!

Representative,
Catherine Miranda  

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Yesterday, a concerned citizen forwarded the email (above), apparently from state Rep. Catherine Miranda (D-South Phoenix).

To be fair to Ms. Miranda, I sent her an email asking for her comments. As of this posting, she has not replied to me.

You may recall that Miranda and Sen. Robert Meza (D-West Phoenix) were the subject of this blog's reporting in the Spring 2013.
A couple of days ago, the Arizona Eagletarian post -- about APS "thanking" state Rep. Catherine Miranda (along with Democratic state Sen. Robert Meza) by paying for a very professionally done mailer -- generated quite a bit of buzz at the Capitol. Not surprisingly, NOBODY has contacted me to deny the veracity of any part of that post.
And nobody since has denied the truth, reality or factual basis of any part of that (those) blog post(s) to me, either in writing, by phone or in person.

The underlying subject of the reporting in question, about both Miranda and Meza, related directly to the Lobbyist Shakedown bill which has since been validated by the Arizona Supreme Court. On December 17, the court struck down a temporary injunction which had prevented the much relaxed campaign finance limits from going into effect.

Arizona law already prohibits lawmakers from collecting campaign contributions during the legislative session, which starts on Monday. Therefore, this week is a big campaign fundraising week for candidates who plan to run for re-election, or in Rep. Miranda's case, for the Senate.

My use of the expression Lobbyist Shakedown has been all but ignored by other media. Masticate and ruminate over Miranda's email message and then tell me whether or not that expression is hyperbolic.

Democratic state Rep. Miranda's list of 76 lobbyists includes Republican heavy hitters Chuck Coughlin and Doug Cole with HigherGround, Matt Benson (former spokesman for Gov. Brewer), Stan Barnes (who regularly appears on local political news programs as the voice of Republican business interests), Wil Cardon (businessman currently running for Secretary of State), Steve Chucri (president of the Arizona Restaurant Association AND a Republican Maricopa County Supervisor), former Republican Senate Majority Leader Tim Bee; various industry lobbyists, including for investor-owned utilities Southwest Gas and Pinnacle West (which owns Arizona Public Service), trucking firm Swift Transportation; as well as a wide assortment of law firms and lobbying organizations. To be fair, not all of the addressees are Republicans.

Given the brazenness, or perhaps desperation, in Miranda's statement...
I have spoken to most of you or have left a voicemail to remind you about my Wednesday, January 8th fundraiser. This is going to be a tough race and I'm really going to need your help raising funds for my campaign. If you need any assistance you may call me at 602-672-4298. As most of you know I am a moderate, prochamber, prohealthcare Democrat. I hope to have more lunch meetings with you so we can keep each other updated and our relationships strong! 
... and her close ...
Thank you for your support!
Representative,
Catherine Miranda
Is it not fair to ask just whose interests she intends to represent in the 2014 legislative session?

"I'm going to need your help raising funds." "If you need any assistance you may call me." "I hope to have more lunch meetings with you so we can keep each other updated and our relationships strong!"

How exactly does a sitting state legislator keep relationships with lobbyists strong? Do you think maybe Miranda is suggesting she swap cookie recipes with big time lobbyists? What kind of assistance do you think they would want IN EXCHANGE for helping her raise funds to fend off a primary campaign for the Senate?

I'm sorry but this reeks of AZSCAM to me. Lobbyist Shakedown, in my view, is too mild to describe this outrageous behavior.

If Rep. Miranda contacts me to deny authorship or any part of the email that was sent to me yesterday, then I will post a correction or clarification as warranted.

-----

As an aside, BIG kudos to Morgan Loew, reporting for KPHO Channel 5 in Phoenix on Sen. Steve Yarbrough's bilking of taxpayers through his school tuition organization. I may write another blog post specifically on that situation. But if I do not, you absolutely MUST check out Loew's video and write up.

Some Facebook friends expressed frustration about the fact that Yarbrough's obvious conflict of interest is old news. However, I believe Loew's investigation dug up substantially more specific detail than had been previously reported. In one year, Yarbrough's take from donation taxpayers intended to provide scholarships for qualifying students to attend qualifying schools may have approached one million dollars. 

THIS is the kind of thing that will give voters in the district Yarbrough represents reason to refuse to re-elect him.

-----

UPDATE

As of 4pm, January 8, Rep. Miranda has still not contacted me to dispute any part of this blog post.

1 comment:

  1. Whatever's in Catherine's heart, the fact that she feels she has to bend over for special interests is nauseating. We really need to rewrite a stronger, Scalia-proof Clean Elections Act (so corporate Dems and corporate media can't say it's "dead," or too weak to make candidates competitive) and get it on the ballot.

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