Democrats: Bee Violates State Resign-to-Run Law

Posted September 11, 2007 at 10:56am

In charges Republicans are calling baseless, Arizona Democrats say state Senate President Tim Bee (R) might be in violation of the Grand Canyon State’s resign-to-run law.

Bee, who is considering challenging Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D) in the Republican-leaning 8th district, has launched an exploratory committee. Since doing so, he has come under attack from Democrats, who accuse Bee of conducting more campaign activities than Arizona’s resign-to-run law allows.

Attorneys for the Arizona Democratic Party are investigating.

“Clearly we’re concerned there could be violation of law there, and we’re having our attorney look into it,” Arizona Democratic Party spokeswoman Emily Bittner said. “ We’re worried Tim Bee is trying to have it both ways.”

Republicans countered that Democrats are worried that Giffords would not be able to withstand a challenge from Bee and are therefore doing anything they can to derail his potential candidacy.

“The Democrats are full of it,” said Sean McCaffrey, a spokesman for the Arizona GOP. “They’ve got a prospective opponent in Senate President Bee — if he announces — who is very popular among Republicans, very popular among Independents and is even popular among Democrats because he has a record of getting the job done with little controversy, little fanfare and lots of results.”

Arizona requires any individual who holds office in the Legislature to resign before officially launching a Congressional bid. Opening up an exploratory committee is allowed under the current law.

— David M. Drucker