I’ve been struck by the unusually large number of media articles showing up in my Google “birther” alerts. Much of it is about Arizona’s Secretary of State Ken Bennett and his quest to gain verification of President Obama’s birth from the State of Hawaii, a quest that has reached a successful conclusion. In parallel the press is reporting that the Maricopa County Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio sent deputies to Hawaii, seeking the same verification. Just about ever major news outlet has stories reporting that Bennett is satisfied, and Arpaio is not.
One headline struck me in particular because of it’s critical phrasing: “Arizona Sheriff Arpaio uses taxpayers’ money to sent birther investigators to Hawaii.” The article is topped with a very unflattering photo of Arpaio. Is this this from an Obama-friendly news outlet, from a liberal rag? No, it’s from the very conservative Washington Times, in their Communities section, the same newspaper where Charles Kerchner ran his half-page advertisements challenging Obama’s eligibility. Arpaio is called “Super Birther Sheriff.” The “Cold Case Posse” is called “The Cold Case vigilantes” and their project a “bogus investigation.”
According to the Times article, the Cold Case Posse investigation has eaten up $40,000 of donated money.
I left the following comment on the article:
Frankly, I think Arpaio is in a lot more trouble from the civil lawsuits pending against him than he is from the Department of Justice. The potential consequences from the suit by retired Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe over trumped-up politically-motivates criminal charges filed against him in 2009 are going to hurt a lot more. In the Donahoe case allegations, we see the same pattern of unsubstantiated charges, false probable cause, and trial by press conference repeated in the Cold Case Posse investigation.
The fact that a conservative paper like the Washington Times publishes an article like this highlights how far out of the mainstream Arpaio is. Conservatives are leaving him to twist in the wind.
Note: the article writer, Catherine Poe, is a Democrat.