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GILBERT (May 27) -  Today, the Professional Fire Fighters of Arizona announced their endorsement for Senate President Andy Biggs for Arizona's Fifth Congressional District.

Andy Biggs released the following statement:

"It is humbling to receive this support from the Professional Fire Fighters of Arizona. Firefighters and paramedics across Arizona sacrifice so much to serve our communities, and their valiant efforts should never go without our constant expression of gratitude. I look forward to working from the U.S. House of Representatives with our first responders to ensure that residents in Arizona's Fifth District can continue to count on the best service and care from their public safety officials."

The Professional Fire Fighters of Arizona released the following statement:

“The Professional Fire Fighters of Arizona, representing 7000 Fire Fighters and Paramedics throughout Arizona, proudly endorses Andy Biggs for Congress. “

“Andy Biggs has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to our public safety and has been a fierce defender of the principles that guide good governance as established in the Constitution of the United States of America.”

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FROM: J.P. Twist, Campaign Manager
TO: Interested Parties
SUBJECT: How We Won

It was January, and I had just watched a discussion on Channel 8’s Journalists Roundtable, where the panel predicted as high as a 70-some percent victory for Prop 123 on May 17. I almost fell out of my chair. If only they were seeing what I was seeing.

Our first poll around the same time told a totally different story. Just 50 percent ‘yes.’ This would be close to the very end, I remember thinking. The electorate was divided – not just on Prop 123, but on the broader discussion about education funding. Voters of both parties – especially in a low turnout special election and in a toxic political climate – were skeptical of pouring more money into anything to do with the government.

Getting voters the facts and explaining the details of a complicated and important policy proposal would be tough, but as we saw this week, not impossible. From our first poll all the way to Election Day, we knew this was going to have to be an aggressive, expensive campaign. A lot was on the line -- $3.5 billion in education funding over the next decade, the settlement of a years-long lawsuit, and immediate pay raises for teachers all over the state.

Through an intense campaign strategy that relied on constant data crunching, targeted voter turnout investments, an unconventional political coalition and messaging tailored to key constituencies that followed polling trends, Prop 123 has achieved victory.

Here’s how we did it.

WHERE WE STARTED

Despite conventional wisdom, Prop 123 was never a slam dunk. In fact, it never hit higher than in the low 50s in our tracking. It peaked at 53 percent in our April poll. But generally, it always hovered right around 50 percent.

January 7-10
YES: 50%
NO: 41%

April 14-17
YES: 53%
NO: 36%

April 25-26
YES: 49%
NO: 40%

May 2-3
YES: 47%
NO: 42%

May 11-12
YES: 49%
NO: 40%

The bottom line is that the race was always close. We knew we wouldn’t just win by chance. And we knew the dynamics of an initiative campaign: It’s a lot harder to get people to ‘yes’ than ‘no.’ If voters are confused, they just say ‘no.’  We always operated under the assumption that the ‘yes’ numbers in our surveys would be what we got, and the “no’s” and “undeciceds” would all ultimately all be ‘no.’

LOW TURNOUT

Polling research and focus groups told us a lot. Some said the proposal was too good to be true. “I want to know more,” one female Independent voter said in a March focus group, when the proposition had yet to garner much media attention. “It seems too good to be true.” Our opening ad addressed that – explaining the proposal in a way that was digestible and understandable.

But there were other dynamics at play that stared us in the face and we knew we needed to address.

“Likely voters” in this race differ dramatically from the larger electorate. More than half were over the age of 65. They are more Republican, with an 11-point advantage over Democrats. And they are more Anglo – 82 percent white.

Our universe were hyper partisan, primary-going voters – the very voters animating the unpredictability we are seeing in the presidential campaign. These voters, including Democrats, are extremely skeptical of government, politicians, traditional institutions and whether schools will use these dollars appropriately.  The Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders factors were very much on our mind as this campaign unfolded.

For many, it was a tough sell to spend this amount of money without strings attached. Counter-intuitively, among both Democratic and Republican voters, the idea that the proposal was “bipartisan” and backed by leaders in both parties was reason enough to say “no.”

“It makes me suspicious,” one female Democratic voters said in our March focus group. “If both sides like it, there’s got to be something wrong with it.”  This is the level of distrust that exists right now in the electorate – the negativism is almost unbelievable, and it got worse every month during the campaign

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by Team O'Halleran

According to the National Park Service, the Grand Canyon National Park supports 7,400 jobs and creates more than $467 million for the local economy.

Protecting the Grand Canyon National Park is not only critical to preserving its majestic landscape, but to securing the economic benefits it provides for our community.

Click here to advocate

The Grand Canyon National Park provides visitors from across the globe an opportunity to enjoy beautiful scenery and fun recreational activities.

But let us not forget the financial stability the park generates for so many in our community.

Join us to advocate for the protection of the Grand Canyon National Park:

Team O’Halleran

 

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by Friends of John McCain

Phoenix, AZ— Today, National Right to Life endorsed John McCain for the United States Senate. John McCain has fought for policies to protect the unborn and has a 100% voting record on pro-life issues:

“I am honored to receive the endorsement of National Right to Life, an organization that promotes respect and dignity of every individual human being, born or unborn," said John McCain. "As a lifetime pro-life supporter, I have fought to defend the rights of all human life and I will continue this fight in the U.S. Senate."

"All voters who are concerned with the right to life and with the protection of the most vulnerable members of the human family should vote to return John McCain to the U.S. Senate, so that he can continue to work to advance vital pro-life public policies," said Carol Tobias, President of National Right to Life.

Other national pro-life advocates praised the endorsement of John McCain:
“Senator McCain is steady and unwavering friend to unborn children and their mothers and we are proud to have him on the side of life. He is a good listener, strategic thinker, and helpful ally in our fight to advance the right to life and protect the conscience rights of pro-life Americans.” – Marjorie Dannenfelser, President of Susan B. Anthony List

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by Bill Gates for Arizona

Phoenix, AZ – Today the Bill Gates for County Supervisor campaign announced the endorsements of Senator Adam Driggs (R-28), Representative Kate Brophy McGee (R-28), Representative Phil Lovas (R-22), Representative Paul Boyer (R-20), Representative Anthony Kern (R-20), and Representative Heather Carter (R-15).

"I have known Bill Gates for years. He is a hard worker, a man of integrity and someone I call a friend," said State Representative Kate Brophy McGee. "I am proud to endorse Bill for Maricopa County Board of Supervisor. He has proven to be a steward of the taxpayers’ money at the City and I know he will do the same at the County."

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SAYS BLACK VOTERS BEING WOOED, BLACK VOTES IN PLAY FOR NOVEMBER

Rev. Maupin's Statement Below:

"As an advocate for Civil Rights, I have an obligation to endorse a candidate for the U.S. Senate that will bring much needed jobs, affordable housing, and infrastructure dollars to Phoenix and other urban areas in Arizona. In this year's November election, that candidate will be John McCain,

"I am endorsing John now, before the general election, because there is urgent work to be done, in the now, to reach out and secure the votes of Black Arizonans and others before November's contest,

"This endorsement is not about Republican vs Democrat, Right vs Left, or Old vs New. This endorsement is about Right vs Wrong. McCain is right for Arizona and his opponents - in his party primary and in the general election - have proven that. How? By taking Black voters for granted and refusing to articulate in a meaningful way how they intend to address poverty, housing, education, employment, and criminal justice issues that disproportionately impact Black Americans. McCain, on the other hand, is actively engaging Black leaders to find policy solutions and creative ways to bridge the racial divide and level America's uneven economic and social playing fields, 

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By Yes on Prop 123

PHOENIX — Former U.S. Senator Jon Kyl today announced his endorsement of Proposition 123, citing the need for a fiscally responsible plan to help fund Arizona’s public schools.

“Proposition 123 is a common-sense solution that would inject $3.5 billion into Arizona’s K-12 public schools without raising taxes,” former U.S. Senator Jon Kyl said. “It’s a fiscally sound, responsible plan that is badly needed to help students and teachers achieve in the classroom. I strongly encourage you to join me, and many other conservatives in voting YES on Prop 123.”

“Our teachers and students need resources in the classroom,” Sharon Harper, chairwoman of the YES on Prop 123 campaign said. “This is a fiscally responsible plan that puts money in the classroom now. It’s a conservative solution, it’s an innovative solution and it doesn’t put Arizona’s fiscal future in jeopardy. Let’s do what’s right for Arizona — vote YES on Prop 123.”

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Prop 123 is a ballot measure that settles a years-long lawsuit and puts $3.5 billion into Arizona’s K-12 public schools over the next 10 years without raising taxes. The proposition goes to the ballot on May 17.

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By Let's Vote Yes for Arizona Schools

More than 20 school districts are waiting on approval of Prop 123

PHOENIX – For Arizona teachers, many of whom have not received a pay raise since before the Great Recession, passage of Proposition 123 means a needed and necessary pay raise this year.

So far, more than 20 Arizona school districts have released or passed provisional budgets that include pay raises for teachers. But those raises will evaporate in most communities without the guaranteed dollars that Proposition 123 provides.

“School boards across the state are struggling to attract and retain good, quality teachers,” said Tim Ogle, executive director of the Arizona School Boards Association. “School board members around Arizona have indicated that if Proposition 123 passes, teacher raises will be the first line item in their budgets and the first item on their agendas to pass. But, without the dollars that Proposition 123 brings, teachers will continue to receive unacceptably low pay for the work they’re doing to educate our kids and we will continue to see teachers flee Arizona for other states. At the end of the day, the only way to improve education in Arizona is with a high-quality teacher in the classroom.”

“Teacher pay in Arizona is embarrassingly low,” said Andrew Morrill, president of the Arizona Education Association. “Many, if not most, teachers in Arizona have gone six or seven years without even a nominal increase in their pay, hence our teacher shortage crisis. If Proposition 123 doesn’t pass, it’ll send a message to our teachers that we don’t appreciate or respect the work they’re doing to educate our kids, and they’ll continue leaving Arizona for higher paying teaching positions in other states or leaving the profession altogether. Prop 123 is the first step to get teachers in nearly all districts a raise this year, and keeping them in Arizona.”

“Arizona teachers have gone too long without getting the compensation they deserve,” said Sharon Harper, chairwoman of the Let’s Vote Yes for Arizona Schools, in support of Prop 123 campaign. “Let’s pass Proposition 123 so we can stem the tide of teachers leaving our schools and our state. The infusion of these dollars will get money in the classroom this year. If we do nothing, this will be the equivalent of a pay cut to teachers in Arizona.”

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By State Treasurer of Arizona Jeff DeWit

Proposition 123 is LESS money for schools and RAISES PROPERTY TAXES

I wish I could support Proposition 123.  I wish it was in the best interest of our schools, teachers, and taxpayers.  I wish it lived up to the claim of being “more money for schools without raising taxes.”  Unfortunately it is none of these things.

Anytime politicians tell you they have found a way to spend money without raising taxes, they are either raising debt or raiding a trust fund.  It is why our federal government owes $19 Trillion and our Social Security Trust Fund is depleted.  Our federal government has made false promises, and Arizona is now following suit.

Proposition 123 is a raid on the Schools’ Permanent Endowment Trust Fund which was established by Congress at Arizona’s statehood.  It is a pool of money intended to grow for the benefit of educating Arizona schoolchildren forever.  We can spend interest, but we are never to spend principle, as this plan does in a BIG way.  Proposition 123 violates this Congressional requirement, and if passed, a new multi-year lawsuit will likely begin, further delaying funding for our schools.

The politicians are saying that this Trust is “underperforming our schools.”  This is incorrect.  The amount we spend on schools from the Trust is now the highest in Arizona history, roughly $100 million a year, and should double about every seven years.  Voting NO on Proposition 123 keeps this money for its intended purpose, benefiting our schools forever.  Saying yes cuts the trust fund by over a third, costs our schools (and ultimately our taxpayers) Billions of dollars, keeps teacher pay at 50th in the country, raises property taxes, and creates a huge fiscal cliff in ten years that will hit hardworking taxpayers.

Let me say part of that again.  Right now Arizona is 50th in the country in teacher pay.  If Prop 123 passes, and the trust fund is raided, and when property taxes increase, we will still be 50th in the country in teacher pay!  As the Arizona Republic has pointed out, this is merely a "scam" on the voters to make them think that this is free money, when in reality it comes at a very high price to our children, teachers, and taxpayers.  Read here: http://www.azcentral.com/story/opinion/op-ed/ej-montini/2016/04/18/montini-gov-doug-ducey-league-of-women-voters-proposition-123-arizona-legislature-state-land-trust/83157214/ 

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Fred DuVal, the 2014 Democratic nominee for Governor, just endorsed Proposition 123.

Read his statement, here.

He is standing shoulder to shoulder with Governor Ducey and thousands of parents and educators to put our kids and teachers first. And we've got an new TV ad to prove it. Watch the video here.

Mr. DuVal and Governor Ducey don't always agree but they agree Prop 123 is a necessary first step towards improving Arizona's public schools.

Prop 123 is a perfect example of what Arizonans can accomplish when we work together.

They recognize just how important it is for us to inject $3.5 billion into public K-12 schools over the next 10 years without raising taxes.

We are proud that Democrats and Republicans are putting partisan politics aside and working together to get our schools the resources they need.

Join us, Fred DuVal, Governor Doug Ducey and countless others in supporting Proposition 123, and lend a hand to ensure this passes on May 17.

Thanks,

Team Prop 123

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