More drama within the Republican Party in Scottsdale has bubbled to the surface.
This time an email purportedly circulated by an LD 23 Republican Committee precinct captain is at the center of the conflict.
The email, a section of which was obtained by the Progress, includes voting recommendations for a variety of statewide, countywide and local offices along with statewide and local ballot questions and propositions.
Under the Scottsdale City Council race – which has three open seats – the email encourages recipients to only vote for incumbent Kathy Littlefield and challenger Solange Whitehead.
The email comes weeks after a “golden ticket” candidate listing put out by the Maricopa County Republican Party and LD 23 Republicans ruffled feathers in the council race by encouraging voters to support one GOP-affiliated candidate over others.
The email drew the ire of fellow candidate Bill Crawford, a Republican, because of the endorsement of Whitehead, who he said is a Democrat.
“Number one, voters have the right to know the truth,” Crawford said. “Republicans outnumber (other affiliations) in this election, so this could hurt (candidates like me).”
In Scottsdale, Republican voters outnumber Democrats 70,528 to 40,799. The city also has 55,442 independent voters, according to active voter totals from the Maricopa County Recorders Office.
The Scottsdale City Council race is officially non-partisan – meaning candidates’ political affiliations are not labeled on the ballot – but Whitehead did receive an endorsement from the LD23 Democrats on Twitter when she qualified for the ballot earlier this year.
The LD23 Republican Committee quickly denounced the email.
“As an organization, District 23 Republican Committee has NOT (sic) officially (or unofficially) endorsed Solange Whitehead,” read a statement emailed by the District 23 Republican Committee to the Progress.
The committee also sent out an email to its members under the bold heading “Fraudulent Campaign Material” letting members know that the committee did not approve, authorize or pay for the message.
Further, the email blast by the committee claims that the original email fraudulently included the phrases “OFFICIAL REPUBLICAN VOTER INFORMATION,” “From Your Legislative District 23 Committee,” and the statement “Paid for by the Maricopa County LD 23 Republican Committee.”
The LD 23 Republican Committee email said that “the statements which clearly suggest any such action are fraudulent, and are blatant and willful misrepresentations by the PC responsible for the creation and distribution of this material.”
The Progress could not independently verify whether or not the original email that endorsed Whitehead and Littlefield included statements attributing the endorsements to the LD 23 Committee.
The partial section of the email obtained by the Progress only attributes the recommendations to “Granite (Mountain) Precinct representatives.”