Sheriff Babeu Says He Is Gay, Isn’t A Criminal, And Isn’t Working For Romney Anymore

BabeauandJoseThe sad story of anti-immigrant Sheriff Babeu and his possibly-undocumented beau Jose went viral yesterday, and Sheriff Babeau had some stuff to say about it. From the Phoenix New Times:

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu … announced at a press conference that he is a gay man and that he is no longer a part of presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s campaign.

“I called the Romney campaign, and I told him I’m going to step away from the campaign,” Babeu told a crowd of reporters. He says the campaign told him: “We support your decision, sheriff.”

Babeu was serving as the Arizona co-chair of the Mitt Romney for President campaign.

… The sheriff and congressional candidate said his personal life was none of anyone’s business, and said a couple times during the press conference that it was “almost a relief” for his orientation to be out in the open.

Sheriff Babeau still denies the central charge made by his former lover, Jose, in the New Times story: That he threatened to have Jose deported if Jose didn’t sign an agreement to never reveal the nature of his relationship with the sheriff.


  1. HadenoughBS says

    What a digusting man. Babeu needs to disappear from politics and resign his position as Sheriff. He better be careful ’cause Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio probably has Babeu already measured for one of his infamous pink inmate uniforms!

  2. Jeff says

    Another gay person using the threat of outing as a bargaining chip.

    This constant threat of outing people just reinforces the idea that being gay is bad. We’re always demanding equality, but to hell with the civil liberties of somebody we don’t like.

    And remember, the only person claiming a threat is someone who also denies being here illegally. Substituting the word “undocumented” is B.S. You disagree with the U.S. immigration policy and someone else may disagree with anti-gay discrimination laws. Who decides who gets to break the law?

  3. Ted says

    I’ve been out since 1972 when I was a teenager. Your life was on the line every day. Every morning you woke up still alive, was still a test of personal courage and faith. Each every day we stayed alive, we created one more sliver of liberation.

    So I sit here 40 years later and ask: “For what? So that deceivers like this guy get to do their dirty-work and then try to be some sort of hero?” I am starting to reach the conclusion that our early LGBT work sent the wrong message: that we were working for the right of LGBT people to be equal opportunity moroons. Lord give me strength.

  4. Matt26 says

    So the Romney campaign supports his decision. Surprise surprise. Stay in the closet or get out from the gop. Why would anyone support pary or campaign like that?

  5. Mike in the Tundra says

    Trying to decide who is right and who is wrong is impossible right now. It may be a lover’s quarrel that got out of hand. Ultimately a judge might have to decide the whole thing.

    I do have a big problem with Arizona however. I would have to carry documentation that I am legal were I to pass through it. My mother’s family has lived within the United States’ border for two hundred years. My father’s family arrived from Ireland in the late 1800s. I resemble my mother’s side, and I prefer to always wear jeans. I would definitely be profiled.

  6. Michael Bedwell says

    Assuming his description of his conversation with the Romney Reich is truthful, “support your decision” translates as: we were going to can your fag ass anyway.” So much for the Repug’s vaulted “Big Tent” in which gays are welcomed with open arms. But as he’s apparently single now, Mr. Craig, Sen. Graham, Sen. McConnell, Mr. Foley, Rep. Hinkle, Mr. Crist, ad infinitum, ad nauseum will have someone to bootycall when they’re passing through Arizona.

  7. JP says

    It seems like we don’t yet know for sure that he threatened to deport his boyfriend. Does he have a history of anti-gay positions?

  8. says

    amen, TED!

    I’m so sick of the grown-adult Cowardly Closet-Cases who are not actually “struggling” with accepting themselves as gay – they’re just so bloody VAIN and committed to a conceptual ‘idea’ of themselves that they forget their adult responsibilities of opening the doors for the next generations and choose instead to cover their own behinds.


    “Outing” people doesn’t reinforce some notion that “gay is bad” – BEING CLOSETED reinforces the notion that “gay is bad” – this is a distinction that is still lost on adults who have convinced themselves of lies for so long that they’ve ended up believing them as truth. they aint.

    it just blows my mind that in 2012 in America there are still grown-up adults who, let’s be honest, aint the slight-of-build wisps who would be afraid of physical assault, who continue to give excuse after excuse for not Coming Out.

    really? still? we have people coming out, visibly and vocally, overseas in places where you can literally be rounded up and killed for being gay, and these wimpy little wusses here in north america continue to trot out the same nonsense excuses that i stopped giving when i was 16 years old? shameful.

    wanna know what’s holding “us” back? it’s so-called men like Babeu. This is not some man who is struggling with a deep-rooted fear for his life. This is not some young man in the middle of nowhere with no support Outlet. This is a greedy bigoted adult coward who is VAIN beyond belief – obsessed with his own idea of himself at the expense of the well-being of others.

  9. says

    @MIKE IN THE TUNDRA, Your inflammatory rhetoric about needing to have documents if you pass through Arizona is as hysterical and unfounded as is the B.S. people are throwing around about this story. Police stopping and demanding “papers” is still illegal in Arizona. The court declined to allow that section of the law to take affect and it hasn’t. That is not to say that illegal immigration is not a problem in Arizona, it is huge and yes, it has been handled badly but please get at least a small grasp of the facts before you post.

  10. sara says

    Mike, The DOJ is investigating Sheriff Arpajo of Arizona for doing many ILLEGAL acts including civil rights violations, mistreating prisoners, doing raids on businesses & demanding papers & profiling vehicles & stopping the ones with Brown skins in them, so stop acting like MIke in Tundra is living in some fantasy land. It happens.

  11. sara says

    Examples from the Department of Justice of abuse in Arizona:

    * A legal U.S. resident who allegedly failed to use his turn signal was made to sit on a curb for 15 minutes, then arrested and jailed for 13 days on a bogus charge that was dismissed in court.

    * A legal U.S. resident and his U.S. citizen son invited deputies into their home during a raid on a suspect drop-house next door. The deputies proceeded to search the home without consent or a warrant, handcuffed the man and his son, then had them sit on the sidewalk next to the people being busted from the neighboring house. They were detained for an hour before being released without any citation.

  12. Rob says

    The jilted lover posted texts from Sheriff Babeu that looked like the lover AND his brother were being threatened with deportation. This guy has some ‘splainin to do. I’m sure Sheriff’s opposition to gay rights is well documented if he is running for a republican congressional seat in Arizona, of all places.

    Maybe he’ll have a more productive and convincing second act than Ken Mehlman, but I doubt it. When you fumble right and wrong this badly, public life is out of the question.

  13. GeorgeM says

    I agree that outing someone who does nothing but live a life is wrong.

    But some one who stands there and makes laws, fights us and causes harm, then going home to your same sex partner is wrong and I think fair game. I’m not saying he said or did anything to hurt the “community”, I can’t find anything.
    The only down side IMO is he’s a member of the republican party, it hurts us all the dam time…
    Who knows he may be a strong advocate for us if this stuff is not true.

    What do you think Jeff, are they fair game?

  14. Josh says

    There’s a reason why I refuse to visit the state of Arizona! I can’t stand racists, I can’t stand a hypocrite and a liar!! and they have plenty of those in that horrible state! My money will go somewhere else until they treat all human beings with respect!

  15. says

    GeorgeM, Babeu has been a supporter of DOMA.

    he threw himself on the pire.

    when you align yourself with anti-gay people and parrot their anti-gay rhetoric (or silently condone it) then YOU make being gay “look bad” – Outing cowards like him actually proves “our” point rather well – homophobic bigotry, especially prevalent within the GOP, is so intense that it leads people to harm themselves, truly, in the hopes that others won’t “harm them in turn”

    gay republicans essentially urinate all over themselves in front of their chosen political allies in an effort to see non-threatening.

    it’s pathetic.

  16. Yeek says

    Frankly, I think all kinds of cruelty and deception are possible when love turns to jealousy and hate. The picture is not a pretty one, but I actually hope that Babeu is able to become a better person now that all the artiface has been torn away. Very sad.

  17. Skyglider says

    Um, brown people are just as capable of being vicious liars as white people are of being honest, if fearful. And coming out is a complicated and committed decision that everyone makes on their time. I’ve been following this story and its comments and I’ve mostly seen a quick demonization of Babeu for being white, in the closet, and for immigration. Alternately, I’ve seen a quick assumption and support of “Jose” for being the victim in this story.
    People honestly don’t know a thing about either of the men involved except what they are told by the various news articles. And I’ve seen that people are quick to decide what really happened without any further facts. Then they let their own personal feelings and biases get involved and suddenly. they’re the authority on what happened.
    And maybe Babeu is guilty of what his lover accused. And maybe his lover is a liar. Either way, our own personal tastes and desires have very little to do with this. All we can really do is take the higher road and show some compassion for either party. Or, as evidenced by the comments, we can succumb to our lower emotions, point fingers, judge, and condemn. They gays are very good at doing just that.

  18. PaulR says

    So exactly how is this guy’s case any different from Judge Vaughn Walker, who also wasn’t “out”? Where was the outrage against that “closet case” when he decided in favor of gay marriage? It’s hardly fair to attack someone like this when they occupy a position where being out might not be appropriate.

  19. TJ says

    True AZ story: I had a Latino (US born, citizen) partner for a year. Once, when traveling in southern AZ, we were stopped (he was driving). He had to produce a driver’s license and explain what he was doing in the area. I was queried and had to vouch for him. No traffic violation mentioned. Just checking.

    Years later, my current, green-carded Anglo partner was in the same area on business. He was stopped for a traffic violation. He didn’t have his wallet with him. He got off with a warning. No ticket.

    White Privilege? Merely anecdotal? Hard to say. But my years of experience in AZ tells me that that it is likely the former. The Fundamental Attribution Error reigns supreme in AZ with regard to the right versus wrong people. And a lot of that is racially-based.

  20. says

    utterly wrong, PAULR.

    and here’s why: it’s not that his being “Out” might not be “appropriate” – but that he can only have the position he has by being a testicle-severed coward.

    that’s how it’s different from Walker. Walker is not a walking hypocrite who lives a lie in order to reap the benefits of aligning himself with people who will not support him as a gay man.

    now, this is a distinction that will be lost on closeted men who believe the lies they keep telling themselves. especially those who say “i can’t come out, it’s harder for me because i’m a Conservative”

    there are ZERO circumstances where being Out is “inappropriate” – he wasn’t Out because he’s sucking at a teat that doesn’t allow gay mouths to suckle.

    the problem is not that he’s merely white and closeted. the problem is that he’s white, anti-immigration, and has supported anti-gay policies whilst living a wholly inauthentic double life.

    again, this nuance will be lost on those of you still doing the same damned thing.

    may you grow a pair and a spine.

  21. Chris says

    @PaulR: I understand the point that you are trying to make, and on the surface it is an argument that appears to have merit. I can only speak for myself, but THE big difference for me between the two is that one closeted man (Judge Walker) appears to NOT have an overwhelming history of handing down decisions that hurt the GLBT community. In other words, it would appear from everything that I have read that Judge Walker conducted himself in a “fair and balanced” manner. You would have to argue that Judge Walker’s sexual orientation led to a biased outcome on Proposition 8 which ignored fundamental facts for which his ruling definitely was wrong. The Ninth Circuit Court has already weighed in on their opinion as to whether Judge Walker was biased.

    The other closeted man actively campaigns for a political party that has increasingly demonstrated a willingness, if not a claim of a mandate, to dehumanize and demonize gays and lesbians, and to trivialize or outright deny marriage equality. When a closeted, adult gay man campaigns with this party of “family values,” that person IS harming our efforts to gain equality. If Sheriff Babeu did not have everything to lose in his bid to be a GOP congressman, would he have openly and proudly shared that he was gay? Had this potential scandal not placed the sheriff under scrutiny, would he have ever acknowledged being gay?

    Fundamentally, I would like to think that the coming out process is something that all LGBT people are given the courtesy to do on their own time. However, I also agree with the commenters that “hiding in the closet” by day while you support a party of hate-mongering toward people of your same sexual orientation sends the message that being gay is bad, shameful and embarrassing.

  22. Yeek says

    Skyglider – you are right. Even though the evidence of texts seems to support Jose, it is certainly possible to ‘borrow’ an exes phone and set up a very incriminating conversation by texting back and forth between both numbers. Anything is possible, but at least one person has really hit bottom here. Ugly no matter how you slice it.

  23. GeorgeM says

    If that’s tru then he gets no effing respect from me
    I’ll keep checking his site to see what he has to say about lgbt issues. If he sides with the republican party on them well then he is a hypocrite. It would be better if he agreed with lgbt issues inside the GOP regardless of the parties stance

  24. says

    Sara, you mean the Justice Department being run by Eric Holder? The same Justice Department who ran the “Fast and Furious” gun program shipping weapons to drug cartels in Mexico? Or is it the Justice Department now trying it’s best to shut down medical marijuana dispensaries? Or the one that is suing not only Arizona but a number of other states for their attempts to deal with illegal immigration because the feds won’t enforce the laws already on the books? That Justice Department? Yeah, that’s a credible argument.

  25. says

    the fact that he stepped down from the Romney campaign after his hypocrisies went public, rather than stepping down due to an honest facts-of-the-matter opposition to the policies of the Romney administration is what speaks volumes.

    it’s not “Mr. Romney, i cannot support what you’re promoting” it’s “Mr. Romney, I’m sorry my gayness and deception are blown and i can no longer support you to hide my truth”

    massive eyeroll.

  26. says

    Let’s make a distinction between being “out” and being “private”.

    Judge walker was out but private…..without being a partisan for or against gay rights.

    This lap-dog, Babeu, was not out, but allegedly used his position to the detriment of gay people.Thereby being a partisan.

    Even more egregiously he was a supporter of the Republicans who have denied our rights to equality. In those circumstances where he has sold his soul he deserves no mercy.

  27. jason says

    Typical loser gay guy who uses “I’m gay” as a crutch for his own poor relationships choices. Reminds me of that other “gay” idiot Jim McGreevy.

    Just how many gay men are such poor characters? I’d say lots.

  28. sara says

    MIke– People were being racially profiled & mistreated by the Sheriff’s department in AZ–complaints were rampant, newspaper articles were written about it, complaints were filed from US citizens to the state, the county, the DOJ & it was reported on extensively before the DOJ got involved. In fact there were 400 sexual assault cases against women & children that were never investigated by the Sheriff department because it involved those brown skin people. So keep your political arguments against DOJ to yourself. NOT INTERESTED.

    I was responding only to your belief that legal citizens aren’t stopped in AZ and asked to show papers. They are if they’re the ‘right’ color. You don’t get to comment that someone is exaggerating. I worked with a perfectly nice African American woman in FL who was routinely stopped by Florida police because she was driving a BMW, because they thought she had to be a drug dealer to afford that car. Is profiling illegal–probably. Is it practiced routinely yes. Just because it never happened to you doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.

  29. Tarc says

    He should go hookup with El Paso Pastor Tom Brown – they’d be the psychotic gay couple of the year!

  30. Rich says

    Until St. Peter renders a final judgment on Sheriff Babeu, those who are quick to lionize Judge Walker as the model against which to measure Babeu need to be reminded that Walker was the plaintiff’s attorney for the US Olympic Committee in a successful 1982 suit to bar Gay Games from including the word “Olympic” in their name.

    The lesson from that is two-fold: Vaughn’s role in that case certainly helped the Reagan administration appoint Vaughn to the federal bench; and people, even in public life, do change.

  31. ratbastard says


    The DOJ currently under the control of a Democratic administration. It’s an election year and the suits upstairs at the Dem party are throwing their party’s ‘progressives’ [read: leftist PC crowd] a bone by investigating Arpajo. In other words, it’s POLITICS.

    BTW: Arpajo and Babeau both come from the same neck of the woods in Western Massachusetts, in Babeau’s case that sacred lesbian mecca, Northampton.

    Arpajo is of Italian descent, Babeau is I assume of French Canadian descent. There are many people of French Canadian descent in rural New England. And Arpajo’s hometown of Springfield,MA has a huge Puerto Rican population.

  32. says

    @ratbastard — Babeu from North Adams, not Northampton. Big difference between the two…working class mill town vs. the home of Smith College.

  33. bottom line says

    He managed to embarrass Mitt Romney when Mitt has been doing such a fine job of that himself!

    “Don’t let the door hit you in the azz on the way out.” hahaha

  34. sara says

    Ratbastard–Complaints against Arpaio started on the most local level & include lawsuits, inmate death from tazering, illegal search & seizure, arresting people without due cause, holding people for days, raiding restaurants & demanding workers show papers, racial profiling & illegal detention of US citizens etc. Add to that the fact that numerous cases of child rape was never investigated for several years, because the victims were possibly undocumented(so less than human in the sheriff’s eyes). This was so well documented that Arpaio had to apologize is his own special way: ” If there were any victims, I do apologize.” Also numerous officers were forced to resign. You think that’s about politics??? Because I think that’s about big time abuse of power.

  35. sara says

    All that rant against Sheriff Arpaio was because Sheriff Babeu was being billed as the new Sheriff Arpaio , heaven help us.

  36. sara says

    This scandal with Paul Babeu also has political implications for the Democrats as well. Heinz, a Democratic Representative for AZ, broke rank & voted in favor of a 5 million dollar grant(later lowered to 1.7 mil) to fight border violence, even though Babeu’s county isn’t even on the border. At the time many Democrats were angry with Heinz for going across the aisle. A week after Heinz does this, Paul meets up with Heinz & his lover for a special evening.

    Here’s the text mssge: “I’m at Mat Heinz and his boyfriend for dinner & ice cream . . . we are going out to bar and . . . to their house. [Am] staying over,” Babeu texted to Jose at 1:04 a.m. last April 2.

    In this context, the monetary vote looks awfully shady.

  37. Paul R says

    I would like to *strongly* clarify that the views of PaulR are not from me, nor do I agree with them. I’m the Paul R with a space who posts comments (usually reasonable) all the time. I’ve never seen this other PaulR. If he continues to post with that name, I will change my screen name. Again, since I used to use my full name and got stalked by two people as a result.

    Also, Coco is an idiot.

  38. Paul R says

    Racism in the LGBT community doesn’t make any damn sense. What is wrong with so many people? Just stupid trolls?

  39. Paul R says

    Also, Judge Walker was known to be gay by anyone who had read about him. He wasn’t insanely out, but he didn’t lie either. And the SF Chronicle published an article about him being gay during the Prop 8 trial. Not after.

  40. says

    Is there Republican candidate for anything who doesn’t have a secret boyfriend? This is getting old. It’s like the GOP is the closet of last resort for frustrated, insecure, self loathing, gay men.

  41. george F says

    Don Lemon announced on CNN that Babeu will be interviewed by Anderson Cooper on 360 on Monday night…

    I wonder if they will talk about coming out? Hum…what will Anderson have to say about that?

  42. Shannon says


  43. anon says

    Regarding police asking for ID (usually with the threat of arrest). The regulations regarding this vary by locale. Even neighboring towns will have differences. It can also vary by circumstance and setting. Failing to produce an ID is not normally considered a crime, but under administrative law might be subject to fines. The police (or indeed any executive or legal officer) do not need a reason to ask for an ID, nor do they have to be honest about the law requiring the producing of an ID when asked. This also gets down to common misunderstandings of what “arrest” means legally. A better word in many circumstances is “detained”, with the word “arrest” used too loosely. The police (or other govt officials with certain authority) can detain anyone for any reason (or no reason) for typically up to 24 hours. This power is granted to help preserve “order” as in “law and order”. What keeps people from being detained more often are practical considerations, such as the paperwork, the space to hold them and the political risks. Some parts of the country do make a lot more use of police detention authority than others, but you can’t make any blanket predictions and having an ID or not will not make much difference. After all, IDs can be stolen or faked and involve two people with the same name or answering to the same description. Being detained by the police will not leave you with an “arrest record” such as might hurt your career, etc. The most common forms of detention involve material witnesses to a crime, that is, people who are not suspects and won’t be charged with a crime but are needed to help an ongoing investigation.

  44. Dave says

    It’s getting to the point that when you hear someone in the GOP say anything, the opposite it true. Be it homosexuality, anti-immigration, torture, tax-fairness, terrorism, war, peace. It’s only a matter of time before we find out that Santorum has had an affair with a poodle and Romney is actually a human being.

  45. Brian says

    Who knows what details are actually true. I still believe in innocent until proven guilty… BUT – How could this man work for a campaign that doesn’t want him or his (our) kind? I don’t get it.

  46. Kenny says

    Boo hoo another whiny hypocrite CAUGHT in the act. Any gay dude who supports these homophobes has serious issues period.Talk about shooting their OWN community in the foot.Big freaking deal hes no longer affiliated with MormonRomney if he hadn’t been outed he would STILL be affiliated with him period.

  47. KWMLOPES says

    I agree with a simliar comment I read.
    This “less than a man” is a coward. He is just another 40+ coward,liar, hypocrite in the closet becuase he struggles. Hell he aint, he has been in relationships with me hasn’t he? He, like these others, are just playing in two worlds: marry a woman and start a family: later you screw them; while all long having sex and relationships with men. I have been out for 30 years and it is always a struggle. Especially with hypocrites like him. Let along a right winged conservative supporting Romney?
    What message is this creep sending to struggling teens.
    Come on people this is 2012 America. He is nothing but a sissy. He makes my blood boil. And Babeu aint no man, he is not for doing this. Men like him are middle aged for crying out loud. He is not some high school or college teen/young man struggling with a deep-rooted fear for his life. He had access to services and information to help his if he was struggling with being gay. I feel he is nothing but a greedy bigoted adult coward. To do this to your friends, family and the community & country he serves. Why would you want a liar like this around in office? Vote him out.