Caitlin Sievers

Arizona Lawmakers Accused of Bribery

More from this show

A joint legislative hearing into Republican concerns over election integrity devolved into what the Speaker of the House called “fringe theater,” as one guest made wild and unsubstantiated claims that lawmakers, state officials and judges all took bribes from a Mexican drug cartel in order to rig elections.

Caitlin Sievers of Arizona Mirror sat through last week’s bizarre hearing and gives us an update.

Give a general overview of what happened.

“It started out like the other committee meetings about elections have gone with presentations from various election deniers, but at the end of the hearing we have Jacqueline Bregar, who didn’t really talk about elections very much at all,” said Sievers.

Instead Bregar discussed theories that the Sinoloa cartel, “paying off whole hosts of local and state officials, and some election fraud in there as well,” said Sievers.

As an insurance agent, why was Bregar speaking?

“She didn’t mention this during the hearing, but she was pointing to evidence in her boyfriend’s book,” said Sievers. It was noted that she was invited by Representative Liz Harris; however, there is no reasoning as to why.

What were the accusations?

“She is basically accusing the officials of laundering money for the cartel through fake purchases of houses,” said Sievers.

“She went on for quite a while. It was apparent that some of the legislators were getting a little uncomfortable. Ken Bennet did at one point tell her that she needed to stop, because you are not supposed to impune the legislators,” explained Sievers.

Wendy Rogers also stepped in to tell Bregar to wrap up, “and keep it on the topic of elections,” said Sievers.

Was there any evidence presented?

“No, the only documents that me and my colleagues, and probably ever journalist in the state, have looked at are just deeds showing that Governor Hobbs bought a house with her husband and that other people with similar names have bought houses in Maricopa County,” said Sievers.

Caitlin Sievers, Arizona Mirror

Pavlo: Live in Santorini
airs Dec. 3

Don’t miss ‘Pavlo: Live in Santorini’

aired Nov. 28

Stewart Udall: The Politics of Beauty

Proposal for Phoenix Latino Cultural Center

Don’t miss ‘Horizonte’ Saturdays at 6 p.m.

Our Voices: August Wood on preserving cultural artisan traditions

August Wood on preserving cultural artisan traditions

Subscribe to Arizona PBS Newsletters

STAY in touch

Subscribe to Arizona PBS Newsletters: