The citizens of Arizona created the Citizens Clean Elections Commission (CCEC) and the process to run as a “clean” candidate in 1998. It was a reaction by the people of Arizona to widespread corruption in the Arizona Legislature, following the AZ Scam investigation. Every year since then, Arizona Republicans have mounted an attack on Clean Elections. Heaven forbid … we should allow politicians to run for office on their ideas and values and deny big money donations. Every year that he has been in office, Rep. Leo Biasiucci has been the CCEC hit man. His HB2014 weakens the watchdog function of the Clean Elections Commission by adding more bureaucracy. I believe that Clean Elections should be expanded — not repeatedly attacked and weakened.
Thank you so much, LD9 voters, for making me the top vote getter in the 2020 Primary Election and the 2020 General Election. I particularly want to thank my grassroots volunteers who worked tirelessly to help me win re-election.
It was an extremely difficult year for humankind, but you persevered to help many Democrats win– including the LD9 team of Senator Victoria Steele, Rep. Randy Friese and me. Oh, yes, and Joe Biden!
You are my Power Team.
We traveled 2020’s rough and bumpy roads together. We not only faced the pandemic together, we faced a Republican opponent with more than three times as much money and all of the wealthy donors, television commercials, robocalls, slick mailers, and giant signs that accompany big-money politics.
I was his target, and you helped me beat him. The final count is PPH 64,781, Rep. Randy Friese 64,772 and Brendan Lyons 48,026. OK, I beat Friese by only nine votes, but I beat Lyons by 17,755 votes.
In January 2021, when the Arizona Legislature goes back into session, we will be faced with major decisions in the wake of the COVID19 pandemic.
If Democrats take control of one or both chambers in the Legislature, it will be a New Day in Arizona, after 50 years of Republican control.
My goals for the future are to improve the public health and financial state of Arizona, as we rebuild from COVID19 or learn to live with it.
The post-COVID19 world will be different from “the before times” and hopefully better. In my opinion, the past will never return exactly as it was, and we have to plan for that. Travel, tourism, consumerism, healthcare, entertainment, K-12 schools, higher education, work life, prisons … many changes will come in these areas and others, whether we want substantive change or not.
Our job is to create the world we want. Here are some of my priorities for 2021 and beyond.
Sept. 15 was the date for the Legislative District 9 candidate debate hosted by the Citizens Clean Elections Commission (CCEC) and moderated by Hank Stephensen, LD9 resident and editor of the Captiol Times Yellow Sheet.
Due to the pandemic, the 2020 CCEC debates are being held online and not in person, as is the tradition. While we were waiting in the “green room” for the event to start, CCEC Executive Director Tom Collins said that the online debates have had much larger viewership than the in-person events, which is great news.
All three House candidates participated: incumbent Democratic Reps. Randy Friese and Pam Powers Hannley and Republican challenger Brendan Lyons. Unfortunately, Lyons’ schedule dictated a “hard stop” at 7 p.m., so our debate was truncated to one hour. Many audience questions were left unasked.
Below are the video time stamps for different questions, if you are interested in specific topics. Stephensen allows for more candidate interaction; check out the robust debates on unemployment insurance and how to pay for education.
Five years ago this month, I started my first campaign to run for the Arizona House to represent Legislative District 9.*
In 2016, I ran an unabashedly progressive Clean Elections campaign based upon economic reform, equity, and public health.
I promoted raising revenue by eliminating unnecessary lawsuits, tax loopholes, sweetheart deals, and corporate tax giveaways and by creating a public bank to spur the economic development, without draining governmental coffers.
I advocated raising the minimum wage, tackling income inequality, ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, and fighting discrimination against women and other minority groups.
Lastly, I was the only person back in 2015 talking about refocusing funds from the War of Drugs to tackle the opioid epidemic and to end criminalization of marijuana. Far too many people — mostly men of color — are warehoused in Arizona prisons because of activist county prosecuters and over-policing of marijuana possession.
I promised to be the voice of the people in the Arizona Legislature, and as a Clean Elections candidate, I have been free to speak my mind because I am not dependent upon big money donations.
Now more than ever, with the COVID19 virus creating financial and public health insecurity, Arizona needs experienced leaders who will fight for the people and not kowtow to the corporations.
The Coronavirus has revealed deep-seated inequities and widespread race, sex, and gender discrimination in our systems. Underfunded public schools, mass incarceration, voter suppression, food and housing insecurity, environmental degradation in the name of profit, healthcare deserts, medical bankruptcy, and violence against innocents– whether it be domestic violence, gun violence, domestic terrorism, or police violence — these broken systems are baked into our laws.
It’s time for reform.
It’s time for historic change in the Arizona Legislature and in Washington, DC in Nov. 2020.
It’s time to end austerity for the people and welfare for the corporations.
Giving away billions of taxpayer dollars annually was already an unsustainable path. Continuing Arizona’s carte blanche corporate and special interest tax giveaways during the COVID19 era and beyond is fiscally irresponsible. We will need funds to rebuild our state; the tax breaks have got to stop. We can’t afford them.
Arizona should be investing in future generations. We should fund the People’s To-Do List: education, roads, healthcare,
and security — not the corporate wish of tax giveaways, deregulation, privatization, and sweetheart deals.
Now that the primary is over, and fall is coming (hopefully), different types of events are popping up on the calendar. I have five events coming up in the next few weeks, some campaign-related and some Legislative. All of these free events are on my Facebook page. All of them require some form of registration; the two ticketed events that I am hosting require Event Brite registration. Here are the details and the links.
Powers for the People Volunteer Organizing Event, Aug 17, 4-5 p.m.
Join the Powers for the People team for a virtual meeting on how you can help me get re-elected in November. As you know, the Chamber of Commerce, the developers, and businesses that like prison labor are backing my Republican challenger. He has Big Money donors behind him. I have Clean Elections money and you. There are many ways you can help from your own home, like making phone calls, mailing or giving postcards to your friends, and helping with social media. For people who like to walk in the morning, we will be doing contact-free lit drops. Here is the Event Brite link to register for this event. If you want to volunteer but can’t make the Monday event, contact me on my Facebook event here OR through Facebook Messenger to me or to my Campaign Manager A.J. Flick OR via email to Good4AZ@gmail.com. Thank you!
LD9 Virtual Town Hall, Aug 19, 5-6 p.m.
My seatmate Dr. Randy Friese and I are on our own for the LD9 town hall on Aug 19, due to multiple scheduling issues. This forum will follow the same format at before. Registration on Event Brite here is required for security purposes. There will be updates by the two of us, perhaps a guest, and Q&A at the end. This will be videotaped. If you want to watch past LD9 town halls and other political events, check out my Event Playlist on YouTube for a walk down memory lane. (I have spent quite a bit of time this summer building out my YouTube channel, uploading more office videos, and organizing the videos into playlists. Check out my channel here.) For more information, my Facebook event for this town hall is here.