Update on Obamacare-Medicaid Expansion in Arizona

Here’s a brief update on the push to expand Medicaid in the Arizona Legislature.

Rumors are circulating that Senator John McComish is attempting to orchestrate a coup d’état on Senate President Andy Biggs as former Senate President Steve Pierce looks on with plausible deniability. Why a coup? Because Senate President Andy Biggs is the one individual holding firm against a vote on Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion in the State Senate. Both McComish and Pierce are supporting Governor Brewer and trying to pave the way for her Medicaid plan. But you should also know that McComish and especially Pierce took thousands of dollars from higher-ups in the healthcare industrial complex during the last election cycle. (Biggs did not.) We are compiling the names and amounts of all the donations received by Medicaid proponents with the goal of connecting the dots. Just another example of the corporate-political incest (yes, it happens on both sides.)

Meanwhile in the State House, Governor Brewer does NOT have the votes to pass her Medicaid expansion. Proponents of Medicaid expansion are short the votes needed to require both a simple majority and two-thirds vote (Prop 108 requirement). House Speaker Andy Tobin is also holding back a vote on the legislation so you can imagine he is under tremendous pressure to let the legislation move for a vote.

At the same time all this is taking place, Democrats are getting very irritated with an effort to amend any legislation to prohibit our tax dollars from going to Planned Parenthood. (We all know that giving money to Planned Parenthood is an accounting game that allows them to free up other funds for abortions.) Democrats want the Medicaid bill to remain silent on tax dollars to abortion providers because they know Planned Parenthood would be feasting off the same steady stream of tax dollars “returning” from the federal government. In fact, House minority leader and likely Democrat gubernatorial candidate Chad Campbell sent an email out today expressing frustration, covering for abortion providers and urging individuals to call their legislators. His rhetoric has heated up calling social and religious conservatives “extremists,” “right-wing” and “special interests” all because they oppose using tax dollars to fund Planned Parenthood.

Keep your eyes on the players in this whole exercise of corporate cronyism and who stands to gain the most “free” tax dollars.

Representative Bob Robson – Release HB2026 & HB2330!

Conservative activists Marcus Huey just released the following email:

US House Representatives Franks, Schweikert, Salmon and Gosar have sent a letter to Arizona House Speaker Tobin, urging him to debate and vote on the union reform bills currently proposed in the legislature.

As of today, Tobin is still holding these bills. The logic (excuse?) Tobin seems to be using is to wait and see if the AZ Senate passes any union reform bills. If the Senate does not pass union reform bills, then why should the House be bothered?

UnionsThis is not true leadership. A real leader would be working for the distressed taxpayer and rallying his membership to get behind union reform. Passing off excuses and hiding behind the Senate is cowardly and WILL have consequences. If you are a government union supporter then man up and publicly admit it, stop using the system to hide. What happens at the legislature no longer stays in the legislature. Those days are gone.

Please help get Representative Ugenti’s HB2026, Paycheck Protection, and Representative Montenegro’s HB 2330, Union Transparency, moved out of Robson’s Rules Committee so that these important bills can be debated and voted on on the House floor. This is how true Democracy is supposed to work.

Please Email Rep. Robson at: brobson@azleg.gov | 602-926-5549

Also, let’s call Tobin’s bluff and get Senator Griffin’s Paycheck Protection bill SB 1182 approved in the Senate. This bill will be voted on at the beginning of this week. The vote is EXTREMELY close.

Please email and urge the following Senators to vote YES on SB 1182:

Senator Biggs: abiggs@azleg.gov | 602-926-4371

Senator McComish: jmccomish@azleg.gov | 602-926-5898

Senator Crandall: rcrandall@azleg.gov | 602-956-3020

Senator Worsley: bworsley@azleg.gov | 602-926-5760

Time is short – we need to get this done in the next few days or these bills will die!

Urgent! Help Save Arizona State Senate Bills 1202, 1203 and 1205!

State Senator Lori Klein presented Senate Bills 1202 (prohibiting partisan instruction in schools), 1203 (accountability and transparency in curriculum and materials) and 1205 (teaching language compliance with FCC standards). Seven Republican state senators have rejected the bills, but there is still hope: YOU!

By contacting the State Senators listed below and respectfully asking them to change their vote by 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 29, there is still a chance to save these bills! When calling, also ask that members reconsider all three bills. It is important to do so! 

Sen. Linda Gray –      Phone Number: (602) 926-3376; Fax Number: (602) 417-3253; Email: lgray@azleg.gov
Sen. Adam Driggs  –  Phone Number: (602) 926-3016; Fax Number: (602) 417-3007; Email: adriggs@azleg.gov
Sen. John McComish  –   Phone Number: (602) 926-5898; Fax Number: (602) 417-3020; Email: jmccomish@azleg.gov
Sen. Paula Aboud  –  Phone Number: (602) 926-5262; Fax Number: (602) 926-3429; Email: paboud@azleg.gov
Sen. Olivia Cajero Bedford  – Phone Number: (602) 926-5835; Fax Number: (602) 417-3027; Email: ocajerobedford@azleg.gov

Here is info on the bills:

SB1202: http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/50leg/2r/proposed/s.1202lk2.pdf
SB1203: http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/50leg/2r/proposed/s.1203lk.pdf
SB1205:   http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/50leg/2r/proposed/s.1205500.pdf

LD 20 Legislators Back Salmon’s Return to Congress

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 22, 2011
CONTACT: Adam Deguire

McComish, Robson, Dial Become Latest East Valley Leaders to Support Salmon 

EAST VALLEY – Former Congressman and candidate for Arizona’s 6th Congressional District Matt Salmon announced today that his campaign has received the endorsements from all three state legislators in Legislative District 20:

State Senator John McComish (R-LD 20)
State Representative Bob Robson (R-LD 20)
State Representative Jeff Dial (R-LD 20) 

State Senator McComish stated, “As a longtime business leader in Arizona, I can speak with certainty that Matt Salmon has the right vision and experience to advance pro-business legislation in Congress that will get our employers hiring once again. Matt understands that growing our local economy and putting more Arizonans back to work begins by enacting federal policies that cut taxes and reduce burdensome regulation on businesses. I’m proud to join Matt Salmon’s team.”

State Representative Robson added, “I have been a longtime supporter of Matt Salmon and I know firsthand that his record is tested and proven to the core. Now more than ever, we need leaders in Washington who have the experience and courage to hit the ground running and make the tough decisions that are necessary.”

State Representative Jeff Dial said, “Congress has a spending problem and we need someone in Washington to hold them accountable. Matt Salmon is the right person for the job. Matt has experience on cutting our government’s wasteful spending, slashing our budget deficits and restoring balanced federal budgets. I’m excited for his return to Congress.”

Former Congressman Matt Salmon stated, “The constituents of Legislative District 20 are fortunate to have these three leaders as their state government representatives, and I am fortunate to have their support for my campaign. I continue to be humbled and honored to receive such strong support among East Valley leaders and I look forward to working with all of them as their representative in Washington.”

About Matt Salmon

Matt Salmon was first elected to the United States Congress in 1994 and served until 2000, honoring his term limit pledge. A proud conservative, Salmon was rated in the top five among all 535 members of the House and Senate by Citizen’s Against Government Waste for all six years he was in office. He is a lifetime member of the NRA with an A+ rating and also earned a 100% rating by the National Right to Life. He was also the proud recipient of the American Cancer Society’s “Top National Elected Official” award.

Matt Salmon has received endorsements from Arizona Congressman Trent Franks, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, South Dakota Senator John Thune, Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn, Congressman Darrell Issa (CA-49) Mayor Scott Smith (Mesa), Mayor Jay Tibshraeny (Chandler), Mayor Hugh Hallman (Tempe), Mayor John Insalaco (Apache Junction), Mayor Gail Barney (Queen Creek) and former Arizona Congressman John Shadegg.

Arizona State Senate Vote Detail on SB 1322

Here is today’s vote detail on State Senate Bill 1322:

Here is the bill summary:

Purpose: Requires a city with a population of over 200,000 persons to furnish all municipal services with an anticipated cost of greater than $50,000 via a service contract that has been entered into through open and competitive bidding.

Background: The governing body of a city or town, may, by ordinance, create the office of city or town manager, and appoint a person to fill that office.

Cities are responsible for providing services for the benefit of the public or its residents, including all related internal management services, support services, enterprise and fee-funded services and administrative services including municipal judges, police services, municipal firefighters, 911 operators, tax collection and audit enforcement services.

There is no anticipated fiscal impact to the state General Fund associated with this legislation.

My guess is that several Republican Senators just invited a Primary challenge in 2012. Republicans Rich Crandall, John McComish and John Nelson voted with the Democrats AGAINST the bill.