The Conservative's Corner
And while he won convincingly times have changed. McCain may well be the next Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, a perch from which to raise lots of money. But he won’t have the $20 million that went unused during his 2008 run. Add to that a few things.
First, the Citizens United decision could provide a McCain challenger major, stealth resources.
Second, McCain’s numbers among Arizona Republican primary voters are awful. It is why McCain endorsements during the primary election were almost non-existent. People knew of his toxicity and didn’t want to be a part of it.Read more
U. S. Representative Trent Franks Says NO to Prop 480,
a 1.6 Billion Dollar Tax Increase
In an Op-Ed piece published in today’s Arizona Republic, Rep. Trent Franks explained why Maricopa County Taxpayers cannot afford prop 480. You can read his entire statement below:
Arizonans are painfully aware of the skyrocketing costs of health care.
Both federal and state governments continue to ask for more tax dollars to pay for Medicaid expansion and the Affordable Care Act. Taxpayers are contributing more than ever for health care for the less fortunate.
Proposition 480, placed on the ballot by the Maricopa County Integrated Health System, fails to acknowledge these massive changes and the sacrifices taxpayers are already making by asking for a 27-year, $1.6 billion bond and tax increase for the old way of doing health-care business.
As a recent Arizona Republic editorial pointed out, the county hospital is a true safety net only for illegal immigrants because they do not qualify for AHCCCS or ACA, which raises the question of why only Maricopa County property taxpayers should pay for a federal responsibility.
Since Medicaid restoration and expansion began in January, more than 340,000 Arizonans have signed up, bringing the state's total to 1.64 million and counting (25 percent of Arizonans). Arizonans who receive AHCCCS are free to use their insurance at a variety of private providers just like those with private insurance.
Unfortunately, Prop. 480 proponents give taxpayers zero credit for these enormous investments. They talk about health care for the poor as if we were living in a 1950 America, where the indigent were relegated to the county hospital. The paradigm shift to providing insurance for the poor vs. paying for the facilities calls for less government-run facilities, not more. It also provides the best health care at the most competitive price with the greatest dignity for the patient.Read more
There’s a phrase about anyone noticing a tree if it falls in the forest. Perhaps yes, perhaps no.
But in Scottsdale, Arizona these days it’s hard to miss trees not when they fall in a forest, but as they obstruct the signage of prominent businesses.
For years a city installed tree has obstructed grandfathered signage for the venerable Coach House Tavern. Maybe the owners are too buzzed to notice, or it’s revenge for the efforts of customers to stop the city from condemning the property over a decade ago.
A more contemporary and comical example impacts famed collector car auction Barrett-Jackson.
Apparently, the company is readying a revitalization of its southern Scottsdale property near Scottsdale and Thomas Roads. A grander showroom with more collector and exotic car sales is in the works.
If you can find it.
Enter another tree.
Many years ago Scottsdale voters approved a Scottsdale Road beautification project. A good idea.
Yet some city botanist in their infinite wisdom decide to plant a large Palo Verde tree right in front of the Barrett-Jackson sign.Read more
Why don’t elected officials tackle the big issues more? It’s a constant refrain one hears about elected officials whether its foreign policy or Social Security in the nation’s Capitol Hill or Scottsdale visionaries lamenting the lack of a next great thing.
From Michael Bidwill and rich gaming tribes to transient new owners of the Phoenix Coyotes and a spring training complex with the worst mathematics in baseball there is no escape from tough votes and issues in the capital of the West Valley.
Enter first-term Councilman Gary Sherwood.
Last summer he led the charge for an annual $15 million subsidy allowing the now Arizona Coyotes to stay in town. But for his championing and vote the franchise would have skated away, as it likely will anyways several years from now.
And in the heavyweight title bout surrounding a new Glendale casino and involving the largesse of a Tucson gaming tribe and one right here in the Valley Sherwood flipped his vote to favor the new casino.Read more
There has been considerable chatter about the Rasmussen Poll that shows Democrat Fred Duval and Doug Ducey in a dead heat for Arizona Governor.
Keep in mind that Rasmussen has been trying very hard to make up for its gaffe in predicting a Romney win over Obama. Perhaps Rasmussen has been trying too hard.
According to this article in the Guardian, Rasmussen is trying to correct past sins by leaning a bit too far to the left. For example the article notes that “Obama's average net approval in Rasmussen's polling since re-election is +10.6pt, which is nearly 4pt higher than the other pollsters' results.”
Rasmussen is also using past exit polls to weigh its surveys. The article continues, “The exit polls, though, had Democrats with a 6pt party identification advantage. Sure enough, Rasmussen now weights its polling to 38% Democratic and 32% Republican – the same exact spread as the exit polls gave.”
Some more interesting facts on the Rasmussen poll.
In 2010, voters under 40 made up approximately 20 percent of the Arizona electorate; yet, in today's Rasmussen poll, they have the age bracket at 25 percent.
Arizona voters over 65 made up nearly 30 percent of the midterm electorate in 2010, and in Rasmussen's sample, they make up only 26 percent.Read more
In 2007 a relative unknown named Michael Nowakowski decided to take on Congressman Pastor’s influence for the race to replace former Phoenix City Councilman Doug Lingner.
Undoubtedly an intriguing candidate, few gave Nowakowski a chance against Laura Pastor, the Congressman’s daughter.
He fared OK in the first round of voting, but finished well behind Pastor. Surely there wasn’t enough in the runoff election to make up that much ground. But he did. And his campaign manager for the upset? Ruben Gallego.
That should have told us something. Because its engineering was one of the more impressive Arizona political upsets in recent memory.
Gallego has since gone on to capture a seat in the Arizona House of Representatives, and assisted his wife Kate’s successful run against a Phoenix legend, First Institutional Baptist Church Pastor Warren Stewart.
And last Tuesday he sleighed a Democratic legend (at least in her own mind), the ethically short cutting Mary Rose Wilcox.
By any stretch this is one of the more accomplished and meteoric rises, ever, in Arizona politics.Read more
Is there a Democrat in Arizona today that doesn’t embrace just about any call for a fee or tax hike to aid a pet interest?
Our television screens this week suggest Fred Duval falls right in line. While serving on the Arizona Board of Regents, the group that governs Arizona’s universities, Duval supported increasing tuition on the backs of students a whopping 99%.
His excuse? Legislative Republicans dealing with the Great Recession made him do it.
C’mon Fred. Even using your own math that university budgets were cut in half by the State Legislature, your tuition hikes were double this amount.
Is Duval actually suggesting spending cuts shouldn’t have been made to universities which were among the most extreme beneficiaries of former Governor Napolitano’s largesse?
And it was a REPUBLICAN Governor, Jan Brewer, who led the fight for the largest tax increase in state history to mitigate the Great Recession on state government.
No, Duval was just acting as a classic liberal in raising tuition beyond any reasonable level, beyond any cuts to higher education at a time when state government had to whittle away. And Duval will suffer for it as the political commercials continue, ultimately ending his hopes for Governor.
So what does this have to do with Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton? A lot.
As a Phoenix City Councilman and as a candidate for Mayor Stanton felt more like a Bill Clinton Democrat than a Nancy Pelosi one. Yet, since running an impressive campaign for Mayor, Stanton has towed party orthodoxy. Perhaps his aspirations fear a more difficult primary for higher office in the future if he is not an liberal adherent. After all, former Mesa Mayor Scott Smith and former Tempe Mayor Hugh Hallman showed the challenges of winning a primary having once served as Mayors, as Paul Johnson did before him.
But this makes for bad policy and relegates taxpayers as mere subjects to advance oneself in the political game.
Having already flip-flopped on the City of Phoenix food tax, he was opposed to it as a candidate before embracing it as Mayor, Stanton is now strangely quiet on charging new fees for those using City of Phoenix parks like Squaw Peak and Echo Canyon.
This is real simple Mayor. It’s a terrible idea. Just because you can tax doesn’t mean you should.Read more
No rest for weary voters. The Republican Governor’s Association is already up with attack ads against Arizona Democratic nominee for Governor Fred Duval. While the primary messaging focuses on Duval’s obscene support for huge tuition hikes on Arizona students, the word “lobbyist” to describe him is used several times. As sagacious political operative Matt Benson opined earlier this week via Twitter that will be Duval’s first name by the time this campaign is over. It has long been his trade after all.
But Republicans looking to advance the lobbyist line need not rely solely on their own party. In fact, their best spokesperson may come in the form of Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, a Democrat.
During his run-off election in 2011 Stanton faced Republican Wes Gullett, a “lobbyist.” And Stanton was never shy about laying wood to Gullett’s profession.
Indeed, there is a treasure trove of quotes, assertions and really an arching philosophical narrative from Stanton as to how and why a lobbyist would be inappropriate as the Mayor of Phoenix.Read more
So new technology is perplexing some National Park Service officials as they wrestle with how to manage the use of photography drones at its natural cathedrals.
Here in Arizona, the Grand Canyon State, the policy for our natural wonder shouldn’t be complicated at all. A resounding no to their use ought to be the answer.
Imagine going into the Sistine Chapel and being subjected to the irritating buzz of drones. Well, the Grand Canyon is God’s Chapel. And when one visits there an inherent right to irritate and endanger with whiz bang technology does not come with the entrance fee.
Some years ago the National Park Service was wise to restrict air tours to certain corridors so visiting and hiking the canyon didn’t have to resemble a trip to Sky Harbor Airport.
Tourism has been enriched. Access to these travel options has been maintained.Read more
Through all the fights, all the criticism, all the lawsuits, they still come. A parade really. Especially this year, when many thought the Sheriff of Maricopa County was on the decline.
All of the 2014 candidates for Arizona governor wanted his endorsement. Doug Ducey got it. And is showcasing the Sheriff on television. By himself. And with Jon Kyl.
Embattled Attorney General Tom Horne is doing likewise. His thinking? If anyone can save me, it’s Arpaio.
Even State Treasurer candidate Randy Pullen has the crime fighter doing radio ads for him, even though his nexus to the office is remote to say the least.
So how and why does Arpaio maintain such an aura?Read more
By Hugh Hallman
Dear Fellow Arizona Resident:
The mailer is ridiculous, but the motives behind it are not. And the Secretary of State's Office announced yesterday that there is "reasonable cause" to believe the group who sent the mailer is breaking the law.
Here's what Republican Corporation Commissioner Susan Bitter Smith had to say about this mailer:
"Hugh Hallman has been involved in proceedings in front of the Arizona Corporation Commission on the highly publicized issue of net metering and advocated for a resolution that resulted in eliminating subsidies and protecting taxpayers. Any suggestion to the contrary is simply not accurate. I have known Hugh Hallman for over 30 years and he continues to be my choice for Arizona's next Treasurer."
The attack itself refers to work I did defending Arizona residents against utility rate increases by Arizona Public Service, or APS. I fought APS' efforts to raise rates on Arizona residents.
But now, a mailer with anonymous funding sources is hitting mailboxes attacking me for protecting the pocketbooks of Arizona residents. And "coincidentally," it comes just a few days after APS was saved from facing reductions in its government-protected guaranteed profits and exposing the hidden subsidies it supplies to favorite customers — truly the worst of "crony capitalism."
This "dark money" effort cost more than $80,000. Clearly, someone with deep pockets doesn't want me in the State Treasurer's Office taking on their cronies and defending taxpayers.Read more
We may be a young city, but we have a rich history – and it’s our responsibility to preserve that history for future generations.
When I learned that the Arizona Exposition and Fair Board planned to tear down the historic 1938 WPA building, we took action. The City issued a stop work order to call off the wrecking crew, and joined Preserve Phoenix’s lawsuit to stop the demolition.
I asked the Phoenix Historic Preservation Commission to convene a special meeting, and commissioners voted unanimously to designate the grounds historic. We all owe them a thanks for stepping up and doing the right thing.
State officials agreed and I’m grateful that they scrapped their plans to demolish the building.Read more
by Scottsdale City Council Member Suzanne Klapp
Yesterday in front of supporters, business owners and ASU officials, I announced my decision to pursue a third term on the Scottsdale City Council. We gathered outside of ATOMdesign, a business located in Skysong, the ASU Scottsdale Innovation Center, along McDowell Road to make the announcement.
Six years ago I brought a fresh business perspective to the Scottsdale City Council and prioritized economic growth, the continued development of SkySong, and the revitalization of McDowell Road. I am particularly excited about this City Council run and intend to focus our Council on better connecting Scottsdale citizens with their government.
It’s been my desire to not only run a business but to be involved in the community. It causes me to be motivated every day. There is more to do, more to make happen, and more we as government leaders can do to assist business owners and residents. We can help them through the red tape, through the regulation, and perhaps live their lives a little easier.Read more
By Arizona State Senator Katie Hobbs
Today is a day for us to celebrate equality and love. It has prevailed. The Supreme Court ruling handed down today strengthens families and communities all over the country. It provides certainty for couples in Arizona that their marriages will remain legally recognized.
I want to congratulate everyone that has worked for this day, it wouldn’t have happened without your determination. I have been encouraged by your perseverance and strength that when we organize, work together, and stand up for what is right we can make positive change.
We must remember though that the fight for full equality for all Arizonans does not end today. LGBT people can still be fired, evicted, or denied services simply for who they are or who they love. I am committed to changing that. Join me by signing our petition here to end these discriminatory practices.
Senate Democratic Leader
by Carly Fiorina
Fox News recently announced how they will select participants for the first presidential campaign debate.
I’ll skip straight to the point: I look forward to participating in the Fox News debate. I’ll make it clear that I’m ready to take on Hillary Clinton.
But I need your help to get on that debate stage. In order to secure an invitation, I need to grow my team of supporters. Will you make a donation of $13 today to help me get on that debate stage?
I’m running for President because we need a leader we can actually trust in the White House.
In the business world, we don’t have the luxury of hiding from our problems until they go away, like Hillary does on the campaign trail. We have to actually accomplish something.
When I was hired to be CEO of Hewlett-Packard—the first woman in history to run a business so large—I found myself face-to-face with the biggest tech recession in history, and a market that was dramatically changing.
At HP, I wasn’t afraid to shake up the status quo. My decisions didn’t always make me popular—but they would ultimately prove to be the right ones.
By Robert Leger
A tale of two mayors and two cities:
After Steve Ellman abandoned his efforts to build a professional ice hockey arena in Scottsdale and turned to Glendale, Scottsdale was left was a deteriorating mall at Scottsdale and McDowell Roads. Eventually, the city partnered with ASU to build SkySong, a research and innovation center.Read more
By Marco Rubio
Last week, our team told you about the New York Times attacking me for receiving four traffic tickets over the last 20 years. Now, today, the Times is out with a story suggesting that I'm not rich enough to be president!
According to the Times, "Rubio entered public life in a deep financial hole of his own making." Sounds pretty bad, doesn't it? But what exactly was this deep financial hole of my own making? My student loans! I didn't have the money for college, so I had to take out loans. And now the Times is attacking me for it.
As I have said many times, I am not poor, but I'm not rich either. It's true, I didn't make over $11 million last year giving speeches to special interests. And we don't have a family foundation that has raised $2 billion from Wall Street and foreign interests.Read more
By Lindsey Graham
Just moments ago I officially announced that I am running for the Republican nomination for President of the United States.
Will you stand with me today as a DAY ONE Founding Member of my campaign? Please follow this link to make an instant online contribution.
I did not make this decision lightly. After months of consideration and years of working to protect and secure our country, I knew I could still do more.
Our country very much needs a proven leader...
- Who is ready to be Commander in Chief on Day One and has the conviction to defeat our enemies...
- Who can inspire Americans to build on the best our country has to offer...
- And who can cast a vision for a strong, secure and prosperous nation that Americans can rally around and give their full support.
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