Joe Arpaio and the Virtues of Dark Money

Robert Robb has an interesting piece in our paper today about the challenges in defeating even a deeply flawed Joe Arpaio in the Republican primary.  In doing so, he reminds us of some (but by no means all) of Arpaio's worst characteristics, and makes a good case for why dark money in elections makes sense:

The missing element in the anti-Arpaio coalition is actually the business community.

Arpaio's war chest doesn't have to be matched. But making the case against him would require a campaign in the $2-$3 million range, beyond the reach of what an opponent is going to be able to raise.

If Arpaio is to be defeated, the business community probably has to conclude that he's enough of a damaging menace to warrant funding an independent campaign in that range. But the money isn't the only hurdle.

With Arpaio, there's a risk of criminal investigations and bogus criminal charges if you oppose him. That's part of what makes him a damaging menace. So, any such independent campaign would likely have to be by a dark-money group that didn't disclose its contributors.

It would be fascinating to watch the dark-money scolds react to a dark-money campaign to defeat Arpaio while protecting donors against his documented retaliatory proclivities.


  • roadgeek

    Why does the media in Phoeniz believe that Arpaio need to be removed? If he's winning elections by a 10-1 margin, why is the opinion of the media or other assorted power brokers so important? Aren't the voters supposed to have the final say?

  • herdgadfly

    So when can we expect the same coverage about dark money and the Clinton
    Crime Family? IMHO, equal opportunity bashing would be show balance after 10
    Clinton bashing incidents appear on Coyote Blog for every Sheriff Joe hate spew.

  • herdgadfly

    So now the FBI is indicting 73 year-old, former House Speaker Dennis Hastert for using the banking system to make inappropriately large blackmail payments to a student wrestler for naughty touching oh-so-many years ago. Anything and everything to keep the focus off the Clinton family. Thanks for your help, Warren.

  • SamWah

    I'm guessing because Joe is local, and Hillary is far away.