Failed Third Congressional candidate Vernon Parker’s questionable maneuverings have long been the topic of conversation.
According to this account in the Arizona Republic, citing a federal report, Parker submitted misleading information about his then-status as a federal employee to get his consulting firm certified through a small-business program. As a result of that certification Parker’s diversity-centered business, VBP Group LLC, received a contract worth $1.2 million from the U.S. Small Business Administration. The contract paid VBP Group to coach small businesses on how to apply for government contracts.
More recently, the one-time appointed Paradise Valley Mayor momentarily dipped his toe into the 2010 gubernatorial race, before hopping over to crowded CD 3 pond, from which Ben Quayle ultimately emerged victorious. His penchant for covering all bases is keenly honed, as evidenced by Parker’s endorsement of John McCain‘s last senatorial bid as he brazenly and simultaneously showed up at a soiree for J.D. Hayworth, McCain’s opponent.
Today Parker is mentioned twice in the morning newspaper.
First, under the banner headline Arpaio fundraisers raise questions, giving the appearance that Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is the beneficiary of donations ostensibly for his defense fund, although it is not affiliated with the sheriff and he cannot use any cash it raises to mount a legal defense, should he ever need one. The Committee to Defend Sheriff Joe has deceptively been raising money in Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s name.
And who is behind this scheme? None other than Vernon Parker.
This information regarding the fundraising efforts comes directly from the daily’s report, although the links are to our previous articles:
Gary Bae is the group’s director, according to documents filed with the Internal Revenue Service. He formerly led a group called Wake Up! Arizona, a coalition of business owners and activists opposed to Arizona’s employer-sanctions law. On Tuesday, hours after Arpaio’s deputies raided a West Valley business as part of an immigration sweep, Parker said Bae’s background of working against one of Arpaio’s pet immigration issues did not present a conflict for the Committee to Defend Sheriff Joe. “There’s a stark difference, for me at least, between employer sanctions and drug cartels and human trafficking,” Parker said.
Nearly all of the money the committee has spent so far – more than $17,000 – has gone to Lincoln Strategy Group, according to IRS filings. Bae shares office space with Lincoln Strategy, according to documents filed with the Arizona Corporation Commission. Lincoln Strategy is a public-affairs firm owned by Nathan Sproul, who ran a 2008 campaign to defeat Sen. Russell Pearce (R-Dist.18) one of Arpaio’s closest political allies. The committee’s treasurer, Kelly Lawler, served in the same role this year for congressional candidate Susan Bitter Smith, who falsely claimed an Arpaio endorsement in the Republican primary.
And that second mention of McCain-insider Vernon Parker in today’s edition? It’s a blood-chiller. He’s considering running for the AZ GOP chairman position.