A La Paz County grand jury Tuesday returned a two-count indictment against state Rep. Trish Groe, including a felony charge of drunken driving for which a conviction would force her to resign her seat.
The indictment came at a court hearing shortly after noon. Groe, R-Lake Havasu City, faces one count of aggravated DUI, a Class 4 felony, and a second count of false reporting, a misdemeanor related to allegedly inaccurate statements that she gave police the night of her arrest.
The article went on to cover Rep. Groe's history, including a DUI 8 years ago and a suspended license due to an unpaid speeding ticket.
AZ Rep's Plugged In coverage (by the writer who wrote the main news article, Matt Benson) here.
In the Plugged In entry, he included the following quote from Emily Bittner, spokeswoman for the Arizona Democratic Party -
Trish Groe has no place in a Legislature that just passed one of the strictest DUI penalties in the country. We wish her the best in putting her life back together and getting the kind of counseling she needs. But her need for rehabilitation shouldn't come at the expense of representing her constituents. At this point, Groe should do the right thing and step down.
On this, I have to disagree with Ms. Bittner; much like her fellow Republican scofflaw Senator Larry Craig (R-ID) of Minneapolis airport restroom notoriety, if she steps down, she'll be 'out of sight, out of mind.'
Assuming that, if as expected, the case is ultimately plead down to a misdemeanor, Rep. Groe should stay right where she is.
As an incumbent, she can be added to the list of disgraced Republican officials serving as a campaign topic instead of serving time.
No, it's not nice or charitable of me, but simply put, she freely chose to live a public life; there are benefits and costs associated with that choice.