It is a sad state of affairs when our government’s most important decisions — how to wisely invest $5 billion and how to maintain our water supply into the future — are made behind closed doors by a tiny group of (primarily) white men.
The Libertarian and Corporate wings of the Arizona Republican Caucus in the Legislature have been battling each other over the budget, since the skinny austerity budget failed in April on a bipartisan vote.
While Republicans twist each other’s arms over the budget, water, and tax giveaways, floor action focuses on culture wars, 2020 election conspiracy theories, voter suppression and guns. Since April, the Legislature has had sketchy schedules with a handful of votes and many days of adjournment. (Don’t get me wrong the extra days working from home in Tucson are greatly appreciated.)
In 2021, Republican disarray over the budget dragged out the session until June 30 — the very last day to pass a budget. If the Republicans are going to make backroom deals until they get 100% of their members to agree on the budget, I prefer 2022’s the somewhat random scheduling to 2021’s 28 days of “Pledge and Pray” with no votes. (That was a real waste of time and money!) Although many Legislators (Ds and Rs) stated publicly that they didn’t want a repeat of 2021, that is where we are headed.
Continue reading House Hears Seven Election Bills … Budget Remains Stalled (video)
The Arizona Legislature has a 100 day target for the length of each session. With more than 1000 bills proposed and more than 300 signed into law each year, the Legislature rarely finishes in 100 days.
April 19, 2022 is day 100 for this year. We are lurching slowly toward a budget, with more than 100 bills waiting to be heard and a few large projects — like education funding, the proposed Water Authority, and a potential “repeal and replace” revival of the Flat Tax — hanging in limbo. As I write this note, it is Wednesday, April 13, and the Arizona House is temporarily adjourned until Monday, April 18. This is a repeat of last week, when we gaveled in for business on Monday, April 4 and promptly adjourned until Thursday.
NOBODY wants a repeat of 2021.
Continue reading What Did the Arizona Legislature Do in the First 100 Days of 2022? (video)
“PCs” (precinct committee people) are the volunteer backbone of the political parties. They’re the people who knock on your door to distribute election information and literature, circulate petitions, and register people to vote.
Last Thursday, March 3, both Houses of the Arizona Legislature passed HB2839, an election bill dealing with petition signature changes due to redistricting. Legislators thought the bill was procedural and not a big deal. Republican PCs disagreed.
Continue reading What’s the Controversy over HB2839 & Election of PCs? (video)
Arizona has an extra $1 billion, and it is burning a hole in the Legislature’s pocket. Of course, we can’t use ANY of it to fully fund public education or help the poor by expanding Temporary Assistance to Needy Families.
Heck no! This is Arizona. Let’s throw $900 million at Border fence construction and related Border security projects.
Continue reading Republicans Propose $900 Million for Border Wall & More (video)
Arizona Republicans are passing one voter suppression bill after another. In this video, I highlight a handful of voter suppression bills that were heard on the same day. Many more have passed either the Senate or the House. This is just the tip of the 100-bill voter suppression iceberg that is on a collision course with your right to vote.
Continue reading Republicans Push 100 Bills to Discourage Voting & Sow Chaos (video)
In 2018, more than one million Arizona voters said NO to expansion of private school vouchers (AKA empowerment scholarships). That inconvenient truth means nothing to Arizona Republicans. They get their marching orders from right wing “think tanks” like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Rep. Shawnna Bolick’s strike everything amendment to HB2803 is ALEC model legislation.
Continue reading Republicans Push to Expand School Vouchers … Again (video)