An Arizona sheriff who became the face of Sen. John McCain’s stand against illegal immigration threatened his boyfriend, an illegal immigrant himself, with deportation if news of their relationship ever leaked out, an alternative newspaper in Arizona reported Saturday.
[snip of Paul Babeu denying that he threatened his ex with deportation]
The Phoenix New Times first reported the threats early Saturday after interviewing the boyfriend, a 34-year old Mexican man, and his lawyer. The boyfriend alleges Chris DeRose, Babeu’s campaign manager, demanded he sign a confidentiality agreement; if the relationship became public, the boyfriend says DeRose hinted it would focus attention on the boyfriend’s immigration status.
I don’t care whether Babeu’s gay or not, of course; and under normal circumstances bringing it up would be irrelevant to the situation. The man’s not married and what two consenting adults get up to in their private lives is largely a matter of indifference to me. And, of course, a person’s sexuality is independent of his or her views on illegal immigration. There are plenty of gay people out there who take a tough stance on the issue.
But. Those people generally don’t go out with allegedly illegal immigrants and then threaten them later. The Phoenix New Times article can and will be contested, but it’s definitely clear that there was a relationship, it went fairly spectacularly south, and Babeu made some statements in the aftermath that do not reflect well on him. As in, statements that can be construed as being potentially abusive-of-power.
And then there’s strike three:
The Associated Press says the robo-call features Pinal County (Ariz.) Sheriff Paul Babeu calling Perry “part of the immigration problem.”
Babeu cites the Texas law Perry signed as governor granting children of illegal immigrants in-state college tuition and Perry’s opposition to a complete border fence along the U.S.-Mexican border, according to the AP report.
To quote a colleague*, “There are worse things than can happen than having it become public knowledge that you threatened to deport the illegal alien with who you were having the homosexual relationship with. You could be calling other people soft on immigration right before it became public knowledge that you threatened to deport the illegal alien with who you were having the homosexual relationship with.” To which I’ll add: you could also be doing all of this without really getting it through your head that certain websites on your own side are perfectly capable of carrying a grudge.
Karma, Paul Babeu. It’s what’s for dinner.
*And to reference another colleague, I should note that Babeu was a Romney supporter who targeted Rick Perry over what I considered to be [picayune reasons]; and I was a Rick Perry supporter who did not appreciate that then, or now. Just so that we’re all on the same page, here.