Sousa that day became the chairman of Americans for Sheriff Joe (AfSJ), an independent expenditure committee that he guides in part with California far-right stalwarts William “Bill” Saracino and Allen Brandstater—who both have personal and political histories littered with civil corruption, open expressions of bigotry, and well-maintained connections to the Christian Patriot Militia movement, organized Islamophobes, and the uber-wealthy shadow-elite of the fringe Christian-right here in America. (Part 2 of this blog will focus on said connections).
AfSJ is part of a larger fundraising effort that has helped the bigoted Arpaio raise over $1.019 million since the New Year—over 80% of which has arrived from out-of-state. And make no mistake, Arpaio desperately needs this larger effort that regards him as a necessary national icon of the pro-“attrition-through-enforcement” anti-immigrant movement.
It seems the good sheriff has only raised around $140,000 within Arizona’s borders—almost identical to former Phoenix police Sgt. Paul Penzone, Arpaio’s main challenger. Only 3% of Penzone’s donations, however, have arrived from other states. AfSJ, according to Sousa, has “already raised $1 million from more than 40,000 individuals and businesses across the country.” According to Tim Murphy, most of the receipts have paid for a massive direct-mail fundraising campaign.
Such fundraising is something of a specialty for Sousa and his two co-horts.
In January 2005, a small PAC dubbed Americans Against Illegal Immigration (AAII) popped up in Montrose, CA, a town only 15 miles from Los Angeles. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, AAII reimbursed 3 men for its initial board meetings: Allen Brandstater, Bill Saracino, and Sousa, who served as the group’s vice chairman. After one election cycle, according to the Seattle Times, AAII demonstrated its direct-mail skills, and “raised $850,000 during the 2008 election cycle for mostly issue ads and mailers, the most of any of the immigration PACs.”
And so it would seem that Sousa used his time and position with AAII to ladder climb into the upper-crust of the anti-immigrant/nativist movement. The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), which was founded in 1979 by white nationalist and proponent of eugenics John Tanton, was all too happy to oblige.
Sousa presently holds the position of Honorary Chairman of the 7th Generation Legacy Society (7G), which is FAIR’s Planned Giving Initiative. 7G, according to FAIR is “an honorary organization comprised of friends and supporters who have chosen to support FAIR’s mission through a bequest, life insurance, beneficiary designation, charitable gift annuity, charitable trust, or other planned giving arrangement.” In its February 2005 newsletter, FAIR claims that “These are members who have taken the steps necessary to ensure FAIR’s future…they have included FAIR in their will.”
READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE: The 3 Men Behind Americans for Sheriff Joe: John Philip Sousa IV of FAIR (Part 1) | IMAGINE 2050.