The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors has invited three Republican candidates running for Maricopa County Attorney to apply for appointment to the position in the interim.
The three candidates are Anni Foster, Gina Godbehere, and Rachel Mitchell, all Republicans who submitted the minimum number of signatures required to get on the ballot for the August primary.
The candidates will be asked to complete a brief questionnaire this week, and then will be invited for in-person interviews with board members next week.
The move is seen as an attempt by the County Supervisors to give their favored candidate an edge in the race as an incumbent. To that end, they crafted a number of questions for the three candidates that are designed to knock off any candidate who is critical of the botched 2020 Election.
The Board is required by law to fill a vacancy in the office and must appoint someone of the same political party as the previous office holder, in this case a Republican.
“Unfortunately, State law does not dictate a specific process for filling the vacancy, so the Supervisors can play their game to get Foster in office and work to discredit her competition. I don’t know why they didn’t fill the spot with a current employee, who is not seeking the office as soon as it became vacant. This process is already a sham,” said one Maricopa County employee, who asked to remain anonymous. Anni Foster is seen as the heavy favorite given her work for Governor Doug Ducey and substantial establishment support.
The person chosen by the Board will serve through the 2022 General Election, when voters will choose a new County Attorney to serve out the remainder of the term through 2024.
For months, the Supervisors kept mum about the fact that the former County Attorney Allister Adel was non-functioning due to substance abuse. Her inability to serve allowed the Supervisors to essentially operate the county attorney’ office themselves.