Monday, April 2, 2012

Patterson: "When the Going Gets Tough at the Capitol, I'm Going To 'Bear Down' and Stand Up"

Posted By on Mon, Apr 2, 2012 at 2:09 PM

The ethics investigation into Rep. Daniel Patterson has culminated in a lengthy and damning report (complete with extensive footnotes) recommending Patterson's expulsion from the House of Representatives.

The expulsion recommendation in the report, prepared by Stinson Moris Hecker LLP and delivered to the Ethics Committee and Patterson over the weekend and made public today, is based on a long list of ethical, moral and possibly legal breaches by Patterson, including, but not limited to:

• A broad-based distrust and fear of him by members and staff

• A legacy of ignoring House rules, decorum and professionalism

• Verbal abuse and harassment and physical threats of those who disagree with him

• Past and continued violation of court orders

• Lying about bills

• Frequent marijuana use

• Manipulation of his former campaign manager and girlfriend Georgette Escobar

• Seeking sex from a lobbyist in exchange for his vote

The list goes on and on and on, so keep up with The Range for more highlights and excerpts

Patterson wouldn’t comment on the specifics of the report when contacted by The Range today. Though he admitted he received the report yesterday, he said he hadn’t had a chance to look at it and didn’t know what is in it.

He said the Ethics Committee Chairman Ted Vogt, R-Tucson, had given him until April 16 to respond to the report.

He did, however, take to Twitter to characterize the report as a pre-determined political hatchet job:

Patterson said he would not resign, even if it means testifying in what would most definitely be a messy committee hearing about the charges.

“The people in my district didn’t elect me to resign," he said. "When the going gets tough at the Capitol, I’m going to ‘bear down’ and stand up, and that’s all I’m doing. And I’m doing it with respect and with the truth on my side.”

In another weird twist, Patterson also re-registered as an Independent over the weekend. He said it was something he had been considering for a long time, but the decision was at least in part because he feels his own Democratic Party is picking on him.

Patterson said dropping the Democratic Party wasn't a swipe to his constituents, who elected a Democrat to fill the office, but a way for him to better serve the whole district.

Check out the full report here. patterson-report.pdf

Meanwhile, House Democrats have called for Patterson's immediate resignation. The press release:

House Minority Leader Chad Campbell, D-Phoenix (District 14), following the release of an investigative report, reiterated his demand for Rep. Daniel Patterson (District 29) to resign. Campbell added that if he does not resign, members will seek to expel him.

“I have been calling on Rep. Patterson to resign since this all began,” Campbell said. “The behavior highlighted in the investigative report is both reprehensible and intolerable. If he does not resign now, we need to vote to remove him immediately.”

The investigative report, ordered by the House Ethics Committee following a complaint filed against Patterson, outlines an “extraordinary and very predictable pattern of disorderly, indecorous, and deceptive behavior.”

The report also indicates that the potential that Patterson could “injure others, particularly staff, puts the House and the State in the crosshairs for civil liability for subsequent injury.” The investigators recommended that Patterson be expelled from the Arizona House of Representatives.

“We must take immediate and decisive action,” Campbell said. “Removing him from this body is the only appropriate recourse.”

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