The battle for the soul of the Republican Party rages on, with the latest skirmish popping up in Arizona. The following letter was sent yesterday to the Arizona Republican Party chairman by our good friend and taxpayer champion Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform…
Chairman Randy Pullen
Arizona Republican Party
3501 N. 24th Street
Phoenix, AZ 85016
Dear Chairman Pullen,
I write today to express grave concern regarding plans to politically target lawmakers who are standing strong in defense of Arizona taxpayers. As you know, it has recently been announced that the firm High Ground Inc., a group that advises Governor Jan Brewer, will launch a $225,000 media campaign against legislators who oppose Gov. Brewer’s calls for a multi-billion dollar tax increase in the middle of a recession.
The Governor has made clear that this campaign, which targets fiscally conservative legislators from your own party, has her full-throated support. Several months ago Americans for Tax Reform asked your staff if rumors of a campaign to target Republican legislators were true and if such an effort would be supported by the Arizona State Republican Party. That inquiry, disturbingly, was met with silence by you and your staff.
It is no secret that you have close ties to those behind the aforementioned campaign. This is troubling given your duties as chairman of the state Republican Party and RNC treasurer.
One of the few things economists of all political stripes can agree on is that the last thing you want to do in a recession is raise taxes. Additionally, opposition to higher taxes is a long-held and central tenet of the Republican Party. In fact, your counterparts at the Maine and Washington State Republican Parties have gone so far as to incorporate the Taxpayer Protection Pledge into their party platforms.
According to the Center for Fiscal Accountability, Arizona taxpayers already spend 194 days – more than half the year – working just to pay for the cost of government. Yet Gov. Brewer doesn’t think this is enough.
As we approach an important election year, it is shocking that Gov. Brewer is supporting a campaign that will attack members of her own party because they are standing up for Arizona taxpayers. It would be unconscionable for the state Republican Party to not condemn this effort.
I therefore ask you, as chairman of the state Republican Party, to unequivocally and publicly announce your opposition to and repudiation of this campaign to be waged by Gov. Brewer and High Ground.
Feel free to call on me or ATR’s state affairs manager, Patrick Gleason (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions or concerns.
Grover G. Norquist
CC: RNC Chairman Michael Steele, all RNC Committeemen & Women, Arizona Press