Maricopa County Attorney Calls for Tom Horne’s Resignation

Jun 12, 2014

A twitter battle has resulted in Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery becoming the first elected GOP official asking fellow Republican Tom Horne to resign as attorney general. Arizona Public Radio’s Howard Fischer explains.

Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery
Credit Capitol Media Services file photo by Howard Fischer

It started with Horne’s press aide Stephanie Grisham tweeting on Republican gubernatorial hopeful Doug Ducey seeking legal advice from Montgomery instead of her boss. Montgomery responded that Ducey could have asked Mark Brnovich, Horne’s GOP foe in the primary who Montgomery is backing. Grisham shot back that her boss is the attorney general, suggesting Montgomery was more interested in “politics over actually helping the state.” Montgomery would not let it drop, tweeting “if Tom really wanted to help the state, he would have resigned by now.” Montgomery said he’s seen enough.

“I believe that for too long elected officials have been unwilling to hold other elected officials accountable for disgraceful behavior. And this is the only AG I know of who’s been convicted of a crime while serving in office,” he said.

Horne, who pleaded no contest last year to leaving the scene of an accident, said in a written response that Montgomery “is losing relevancy as demonstrated by engaging in irrational adolescent Tweets against my staff rather than doing his job,” suggesting maybe Montgomery should be the one to resign. Other Republicans have not gone as far as Montgomery, simply calling for Horne to abandon his bid for reelection amid fears a divisive primary would pave the way for a November victory by Democrat Felecia Rotellini.