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Gov. Katie Hobbs condemns far-fledged drug cartel allegations

Katie Hobbs
Katie Hobbs speaks during the grand opening of Homebase hosted by Native American Connections in Surprise, Arizona, on Feb. 2, 2023.

Gov. Katie Hobbs is condemning far-fledged allegations that she and other state leaders like Adrian Fontes and the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors were taking bribes from Mexican cartels.

“No, I’m not involved with the Sinaloa cartel, I’m not taking bribes from them and I’m not laundering their money,” Hobbs told reporters.

Republicans have spent the past several days distancing themselves from the testimony of one woman,  who claimed without any supporting evidence that a host of elected officials and judges, including Hobbs, took bribes from the Sinaloa cartel.

Hobbs said she hasn’t ruled out filing a defamation lawsuit,  an avenue reportedly being explored by other officials throughout the state that were named in the bribery accusation.

And she blasted Republicans for allowing the Legislature to be turned into a “circus show” that gives oxygen to outrageous election fraud conspiracies.

“It is dangerous,” Hobbs said. “It makes the Legislature, quite honestly, a laughing stock, and Arizona by extension, and I hope folks are held accountable for this.”

The  testimony came from a Feb. 23 joint elections committee hearing in the state Legislature in which a Gilbert insurance agent was given free rein to spout conspiracy theories that have been tied back to her boyfriend’s divorce filings.

In the days after, the testimony spread online. Now many GOP leaders are attempting to distance themselves from it and are pointing the finger looking for someone to blame for the committee — which is run by state Sen. and notable election denier Wendy Rogers (R-Flagstaff) — going off the rails.

Here to dissect all of the ins and outs of this one is Hank Stephenson of The Arizona Agenda.

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Lauren Gilger, host of KJZZ's The Show, is an award-winning journalist whose work has impacted communities large and small, exposing injustices and giving a voice to the voiceless and marginalized.