Archives for May 2012

CD-9’s Lt. Col. Wendy Rogers: Game On!

Tempe, AZ – Last week, Lt. Col. (ret) Wendy Rogers’ campaign for Arizona’s new 9th Congressional District filed 993 signatures to secure her spot on the ballot, becoming the first Republican candidate to do so.

“We’ve taken the first steps to putting this country back on the right track,” said Lt. Col. Rogers. “First, I want to send my heartfelt thanks to all my volunteers, my family and friends for their hard work in collecting and vetting all these signatures. It’s not easy work, but we all pulled together and made it look easy.”

But now comes the real test. A crowded field of ten candidates – seven Republicans and three Democrats – qualified for the ballot in CD9. “Now that we’re on the ballot, it’s ‘Game On'”, said Rogers. “Our nation is hanging on the edge of a cliff. Our national debt is threatening to plunge us down the same dark road that Europe is taking, our schools are failing, and even the promises we’ve made to our senior citizens are in jeopardy. It’s time to put aside the phony hope and change and start restoring the promise of our great nation.”

For more information about Wendy Rogers, visit her website at


(Un)Welcome to Sedona!

By Christina Sandefur

Just six years ago, Arizonans enacted one of the nation’s strongest protections for property rights. That measure is Proposition 207, and it says the government must compensate you when regulations reduce your property value.

But that protection is under attack. Now that the state and cities can’t pass the buck to individuals and families, governments are realizing just how expensive their regulations can be. So it is unsurprising that they’re doing their best to avoid paying the high price.

The latest attempt comes from Sedona, which made it a crime to rent residential property for fewer than 30 days, and the city defines “rent” very broadly. This means property owners are subject to punishments of up to 6 months in jail and/or a $2,500 fine for engaging in a wide range of activities, including purchasing a time share, contracting for home improvements, and even hiring a babysitter!

Attempting to avoid Prop 207 liability, the city of Sedona tried to masquerade the ordinance as a “health and safety” regulation, which is exempted from Prop 207. But the court of appeals saw through the façade and ruled that the city can’t avoid Prop 207 by merely claiming to advance public health without offering any evidence that the regulation actually does so.

On the taxpayers’ dime, Sedona is challenging that decision in the Arizona Supreme Court. The Goldwater Institute, which has long defended property owners from government attempts to dilute or evade Prop. 207, is supporting Sedona property owners in that case. In 2006, Arizonans demanded genuine protections for their property. Cities should stop wasting taxpayer resources trying to skirt the rules and start respecting their citizens’ rights.

Christina Sandefur is an attorney with the Goldwater Institute.

Learn more:

Goldwater Institute: Giving Property Owners Their Day in Court

Arizona Business Gazette: Court: Owners must be paid for property value

Walt Opaska Files Signatures for Glendale Mayoral Race

GLENDALE, Ariz. –Walt Opaska, candidate for Glendale mayor, filed more than the 934 signatures required to get his name on the ballot. Opaska filed 1266 qualified signatures of Glendale voters. Opaska’s impressive filing shows that residents are ready for a mayor who puts Glendale first.

“Glendale residents are ready for a change,” Opaska said. “As mayor, I will work for them, not special interests. I will fight to lower taxes, restore city services, and enhance Glendale’s image.”

More about Walt Opaska

Walt Opaska is the son of a teacher and a small businessman. A graduate of the University of Arizona’s James E. Rogers College of Law, Opaska works for Bryan Cave LLP where he specializes in intellectual property rights.

Opaska is a long-time leader in the Arizona conservative movement. He serves on the executive board of Arizona Right to Life, and he cofounded the Arizona Republican Attorney Association with Phoenix Councilman Bill Gates. He has been active in the fight to lower taxes and end corporate welfare. In 2007, Opaska chaired the No New Sales Tax for Glendale campaign, a grassroots effort opposing Glendale’s ballot initiative to raise the city’s sales tax. In addition to professional and political involvement, he has been actively involved in numerous charitable groups, including the 20-30 Club and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Opaska is married and has a four-year old daughter. To learn more about Walt Opaska and his campaign to be the next mayor of Glendale, please visit


NFIB Endorses Jesse Kelly in Arizona CD8 Special Election

Influential Small-Business Association Supports Candidate with Trusted Small-Business Experience

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 31, 2012 —The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation’s leading small-business association, today endorsed Jesse Kelly (R) to represent Arizona’s 8th Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives.  Kelly is seeking to fill the vacancy left by the resignation of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

“Jesse Kelly is the clear voice for small business in this race,” said Lisa Goeas, NFIB Vice President, Political and Grassroots.  “In stating that his run for Congress is motivated by three principles: lowering taxes, strengthening the economy, and fostering a climate that allows businesses to grow, Jesse is walking in line with the very motto that NFIB is founded upon.  Jesse Kelly will fight for affordable health-care solutions for small-business owners, and will work to get our country back on the path toward fiscal responsibility and economic prosperity.”

“Our members in Congressional District 8 spoke loud and clear when asked which candidate NFIB should support in this race,” said Farrell Quinlan, NFIB State Director for Arizona.  “Jesse Kelly received an overwhelming vote of support from NFIB members in his district, making him the clear small-business choice for Congress.”

NFIB has nearly 2,000 members in the 8th Congressional District, alone. Kelly’s endorsement comes from NFIB’s Save America’s Free Enterprise Trust (SAFE), the association’s political action committee, and is based on positions regarding key small-business issues including health care, taxes, and labor and regulatory issues.

Small-business owners and their employees vote in high numbers and are known for actively recruiting friends, family members and acquaintances to go to the polls. NFIB will encourage its members in Arizona to help turn out the small-business vote for Kelly this coming Special Election Day, June 12.

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NFIB is the nation’s leading small business association, with offices in Washington, D.C. and all 50 state capitals. Founded in 1943 as a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, NFIB gives small and independent business owners a voice in shaping the public policy issues that affect their business. NFIB’s powerful network of grassroots activists sends their views directly to state and federal lawmakers through our unique member-only ballot, thus playing a critical role in supporting America’s free enterprise system. NFIB’s mission is to promote and protect the right of our members to own, operate and grow their businesses. More information is available online at

Sheriff Arpaio Files Nomination Signatures for Sixth Term

More than 15,000 Republican and Independent Voters Sign Petition

PHOENIX, AZ – Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio filed his nomination petition signatures to run for a sixth term as Sheriff.

The Sheriff submitted over 15,000 signatures from Republican and Independent voters throughout Maricopa County. This figure is more than four times the requisite number to qualify for the ballot.

“So many people I’ve never met went out and collected signatures for me all on their own. I know it’s a lot of hard work and I’m grateful for their support,” stated Arpaio.

Chad Willems, Arpaio’s campaign manager, said, “It now appears we have a set field for this campaign. We look forward to comparing Sheriff Arpaio’s record of success against any other candidate in this race.” He continued, “Over the past several months, the level of financial support for Sheriff Joe has reached epic levels.”

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Congressman Flake Applauds Passage of Secure Border Act

Operational Control in Each Border Sector is Key to Achieving Border Security

Washington, D.C. – Republican Congressman Jeff Flake, who represents Arizona’s Sixth District, today praised the passage of H.R. 1299, the Secure Border Act, introduced by Congresswoman Candice Miller of Michigan.

The bill directs the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to create for congressional approval a strategy for gaining operational control of the northern and southern U.S. borders.

“Given that the Obama Administration has given up reporting the level of operational control on the border, it’s no wonder Congress has to force them to come up with an approved plan to achieve it,” said Flake.

In 2011, Congressman Flake introduced in the House H.R. 1507, the Border Security Enforcement Act of 2011, which is focused on achieving operational control of the southern U.S. border by increasing border resources. Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl introduced the legislation in the Senate. Among the 10 key provisions of the bill is the deployment of up to 6,000 National Guard troops and 5,000 additional Border Patrol agents to the United States-Mexico border by 2016. It would create additional Border Patrol stations along the southwest border and six additional permanent Border Patrol Forward Operating Bases and would upgrade existing bases.


It’s Time to Give our First Freedom as Much Respect as the Second

By Nick Dranias

Arizonans have the right to bear arms nearly everywhere in this state without having to register anyone or anything with the government.  Likewise, as mighty as the pen might be, no one should be forced to register themselves (or their pen) before communicating with elected officials about legislative reform. Yet, Arizona has done just that through its overreaching lobbying laws.

Arizona does not define “lobbying” as lurking in the lobbies of the legislature and trading an expensive steak dinner for an opportunity to bend a legislator’s ear. Instead, Arizona law defines lobbying as “attempting to influence the passage or defeat of any legislation by directly communicating with any legislator.” Even a newspaper columnist who directly emails a link to his latest opinion editorial to a legislator is lobbying if the email dares to express an opinion on a pending or proposed bill or legislative reform.

Although vaguely worded exemptions appear to limit the reach of Arizona’s lobbying regulations, the reality is that no one can freely talk to elected officials in Arizona about legislative reform without being threatened by the government. Even if citizens and citizen groups invoke exemptions to avoid the need to register as lobbyists, as the Goldwater Institute has for its analysts, elected officials will still try to silence or impede public testimony as supposedly impermissible lobbying. This is because Arizona’s complex and lengthy lobbying laws encourage elected officials to believe citizens and citizen groups lack legal authority to speak freely on public policy. In effect, citizens are now presumed to have no inherent right to communicate with their representatives. This is an incredibly dangerous development.

In a free society, no politician should think even for a moment that he can require citizens and public interest groups to get the government’s permission to talk to the government.

Unfortunately, Arizona’s lobbying laws threaten this foundational requirement of our representative republic. For that reason, it is time to reform Arizona’s lobbying laws to more fully protect our First Amendment rights, just as we have reformed Arizona’s gun laws to more robustly protect our Second Amendment rights.

Our first freedom should get at least as much respect as our second.

A longer version of this article originally appeared in the Arizona Capitol Times.

Nick Dranias is the Director of Policy Development and Constitutional Government at the Goldwater Institute.

Learn More:

Goldwater Institute: In Defense of Anonymous Speech

National Archives: The Bill of Rights

Vernon Parker Files Petitions for Congress

Phoenix, AZ – Today, Vernon Parker filed over 1,143 signatures with the Arizona Secretary of State’s office to qualify as a Republican candidate for the newly created Congressional District 9.

“I am grateful to my supporters and volunteers supporting our campaign efforts,” said Vernon Parker. “To all of you who walked neighborhoods or stood in front of polling place to collect signatures, I thank you.”

“Our campaign, at its core, is symbolized by our supporters. We are strong in numbers and I am energized by their generous spirit and I will not let you down.” 


Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane Hands In 1,625 Nominating Signatures

Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane Hands In 1,625 Nominating Signatures As He Seeks A Second Term To Lead The Greatest City in America

(Scottsdale, Arizona) Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane’s re-election campaign has submitted 1,625 signatures in order to get on the August 28th Primary ballot. The signatures were handed in Tuesday afternoon to the City Clerk.

The signatures were gathered entirely by volunteers. No paid petition collectors were used. That’s because there are so many supporters who know that Scottsdale is headed in the right direction. Clearly, Scottsdale is better off than it was four years ago. Now is not the time to lose that momentum.

Lane said, “Four years ago, the city budget was in bad shape, our economy was slumping and Scottsdale was losing its way. Today sales tax revenues are up. Jobs are expanding. Crime is down. We are once again a City on the move.”

Unemployment in Scottsdale is down one percent compared to a year ago and the City enjoys one of the lowest unemployment rates in the Valley at 5.9%. The unemployment rate for Maricopa County is 7.4%.

A recent article in the Arizona Republic noted the decrease in unemployment as well as the economic strides Scottsdale has made. To read the article click here.

“Our economic engine is running again thanks to smart growth and important reforms. I hope to finish what we started and ensure that Scottsdale remains the best city in America,” said Lane.

Mayor Lane ran in 2008 on a platform of reform and working to improve the way the city does business. He promised to bring the following to Scottsdale:

  • Business approach in city governmental operations
  • Fiscally responsible and efficient government
  • Citizen-driven government through boards & commissions
  • Increased accountability & transparency through charter governance reform

These past 4 years have seen:

  • A $266 million medical school by the Mayo Clinic & ASU
  • Multi-million expansions by Scottsdale Healthcare on Osborn and Shea Boulevard’s “Care Corridor”
  • Adding 7,000 acres to the Sonoran Preserve while saving $62 million with newly initiated purchase planning over last three years
  • Dozens of small businesses opening downtown and throughout Scottsdale
  • Spring training, Barrett-Jackson, Arabian horse shows and many special events thriving in Scottsdale
  • Over $150 million in investments planned for McDowell Road
  • A decrease in crime
  • A 15% structural budget reduction in City staffing

Mayor Lane has kept his promises. Under his leadership, Scottsdale’s economy has expanded and attracted new investment, while the city continues to be a leader in the arts and setting aside lands for preservation. A copy of Mayor Lane’s 7 minute video can be viewed here. The campaign has also launched Facebook and Twitter pages. For more information please contact Mike Manson.


Steve Chucri Files Over 3,500 Petition Signatures in Race for Maricopa County Supervisor

Maricopa County – Today, the Steve Chucri campaign officially filed its nominating petitions with the Maricopa County Elections Department in order to qualify for the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors District 2 election. In total, the campaign collected over 3,500 signatures.

The campaign far surpassed the required number of 981 signatures, showing the immense support that Chucri has generated across District 2.

“I’m very pleased with the momentum my campaign has been methodically building in preparation of reaching victory on Election Day,” stated Chucri.

Endorsements for Steve Chucri include U. S. Senator Jon Kyl, Congressman Jeff Flake, Congressman Ben Quayle, Congressman David Schweikert, Congressman Paul Gosar, Congressman Trent Franks, State Senate President Steve Pierce, Maricopa County Supervisor Andy Kunasek, Gilbert Mayor John Lewis, Mesa Mayor Scott Smith, Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane, Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny, and Paradise Valley Mayor Scott LeMarr.

Chucri has served as the President & CEO of the Arizona Restaurant Association (ARA) since 2002. Under his leadership and tireless work ethic, the ARA and restaurant industry has enjoyed a substantial growth in sales in what will amount to a ten billion dollar industry in Arizona this year alone.

As President and CEO of the ARA, Chucri represents business owners and sees firsthand how the actions of local, state, and federal governments can positively or negatively impact restaurants and other small businesses in Arizona. Chucri’s experiences as a businessman, husband, and father have given him invaluable insight into the needs of his community and ensure that, as County Supervisor, he will always put people before politics.


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