Republicans ask Maricopa County Attorney to take Hobbs 'pay to play' investigation

More Republican state officials are calling on Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell to investigate the “pay to play” allegations involving the Hobbs administration and Sunshine Residential Homes.

Attorney General Kris Mayes, a Democrat, has already opened an investigation triggered by a letter from Senate President Pro Tempore T.J. Shope after the Arizona Republic story broke with the allegations that the group home company got better daily pay rates per child after donating around $400,000 to Hobbs’ campaign, inaugural fund, and the state Democratic Party. Mitchell, a Republican, also said she may open an investigation after the Auditor General’s office reached out to her.

“As the Treasurer of Arizona, I am responsible for overseeing, safekeeping, and managing the State of Arizona’s securities and investments, which are duties I take seriously. Arizona taxpayers need financial accountability and deserve to know how their money is being spent,” Treasurer Kimberly Yee, a Republican, stated. “Providing state dollars to political donors is a grave misuse of public funds. 'Pay to play' and special favors have no place in state government.”


Yee said Mayes wrongfully asserted that she has singular control over any investigation.

"I have requested a separate investigation to be conducted by the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office," Yee said. “The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office has separate jurisdiction in this matter and the current investigation by the Attorney General’s Office raises concerns of potential ethical conflicts of interest in representing state agencies and officials involved in the alleged scheme.”

In response, the Attorney General said that it’s the role of the state to look into the allegations.

The Center Square reported on Monday that Mayes is asking Mitchell to not conduct her own process to avoid “parallel investigations.” Hobbs refused to answer questions about the allegations during a media availability on Tuesday morning, including when The Center Square asked if she would comply with both Mayes and Mitchell in the event they both investigate.

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