Republican Primary Voters Weigh In on Medicaid Expansion for Arizona

Round two of a recent poll is now out and there are some revealing numbers on how Republican primary voters feel about Governor Brewer’s push to expand Medicaid in Arizona Senator Jeff Flake and several legislative districts. Here are those results:

This memorandum is an executive summary of an automated voice recorded survey of 718 likely Republican primary voters in six legislative districts in Arizona. The legislative districts surveyed were 13, 17, 18, 20, 25 and 28. The interviews were conducted March 27th and 28th, 2013. This survey has a margin of error of +/-­‐ 3.65% at the 95 percent confidence interval. This survey was weighted based upon past Republican primary voter demographics. The focus of this survey was to measure Republican primary voter opinions regarding the expansion of Medicaid, the implementation of Obamacare, as well as voter reaction to their state legislator’s support or opposition to Medicaid expansion. The survey toplines are also included with this document.


Among Republican primary voters in the six legislative districts, Governor Brewer has a very strong image rating with 69% of voters having a favorable opinion of her, 23% having an unfavorable opinion of her, and 8% being undecided or not having an opinion.


Senator Jeff Flake also has a very strong image rating among Republican primary voters in the six legislative districts, with 70% of voters having a favorable opinion of him, 18% having an unfavorable opinion of him, and 12% being undecided or not having an opinion.


Republican primary voters in the six legislative districts were asked if they support Governor Brewer’s proposal to expand Medicaid in order to fully implement the federal government’s health care system in 2014. Among all respondents, 30% support the expansion of Medicaid, 51% oppose expansion, and 19% are either unsure or do not have an opinion about the issue. The following table shows responses by legislative district.

“As you may know, Governor Brewer has proposed the expansion of Medicaid in Arizona in order to fully implement the federal government’s health care system in 2014. Knowing this, do you support or oppose the expansion of Medicaid in order to implement the federal government’s health care system?”

Medicaid GOP Primary 1



To measure voter reactions if their state legislator voted to expand Medicaid, the following question was asked:

“Would you be more or less likely to vote to reelect your state legislator if they voted for the expansion of Medicaid?”

Medicaid GOP Primary 2


Not surprisingly, among Republican primary voters in the six legislative districts a majority, or 53% are less likely to reelect their legislator if they voted to expand Medicaid and only 22% would be more likely to vote for their state legislator. When looking at the results by legislative district, the percentage of voters that are less likely to reelect their state legislator ranges from a low of 37% to a high of 69%.


In addition to measuring Republican primary voter’s reactions toward their state legislators if they voted to expand Medicaid, the survey tested voter reaction to a tax increase on hospitals to fund the expansion of Medicaid. Again, it is no surprise that Republican primary voters vigorously oppose this idea and do not want their legislators supporting a new tax on hospitals to fund the expansion of Medicaid. Among all respondents in the six legislative districts, only 11% would be more likely to vote to reelect their legislator, and two thirds, or 68%, would not vote to reelect their legislator. In short, if an incumbent voted for such a proposal it would be toxic for their reelection. The following table shows the question responses by legislative district.

“Would you be more or less likely to vote to reelect your state legislator if they voted for a new tax on hospitals to fund the expansion of Medicaid?”

Medicaid GOP Primary 3



Among the likely Republican primary voters surveyed in these six legislative districts, it is clear they oppose the expansion of Medicaid by varying degrees from a plurality of 42% to a large majority of 62%. Support for Medicaid expansion ranges from a high of 35% to a low of 26%. The survey also finds a plurality, or a majority, of Republican primary voters would be less likely to vote for their legislator if they voted to expand Medicaid in all six legislative districts. Finally, the information in this research should be of concern to incumbent legislators as they consider how to handle this issue.

View/Download the entire report including the topline results.

David Schapira, Political Overstater, Professional Underwhelmer

By Bartholomew Stimpson

David Schapira recently announced the formation of an exploratory committee for congress in the new district taking shape in Phoenix-Tempe. Is this the same David Schapira who currently “serves” as a state senator from legislative district 17?

Is this the same David Schapira who wants the voters to send him to congress so he can concentrate on education issues because of his state legislative experience? The same David Schapira who rails against real solutions to education which produce better outcomes through tuition tax credits and charter school competition?

Is this the same David Schapira who claims to be a high school teacher?  You know, the temporary-two-year-certificate-9th-grade-math-teacher-who-doesn’t-even-hold-a-math-degree David Schapira? He only held that  job because family pulled some strings. Unfortunately for him, he was not renewed because students complained he talked too much about politics instead of doing his job – teaching math. Let me guess. He bad-mouthed his Republican legislators over reasonable budget cuts in education? I guess the math didn’t add up for him to get renewed.

Or is this the same David Schapira the small business owner?  You know, he shuttered his ASU midnight delivery business because he didn’t know how to run a business, or maybe because he sold condoms and Beer Pong to underage students as a state representative which didn’t look good for a state legislator. And I almost forgot to mention that Schapira sold pregnancy test kits to underage ASU students as part of his condoms and beer pong package. Makes good sense if you’re gonna go binge drink and hook up for some casual college sex afterwords. But doesn’t bode well if you’re trying to lead as a role model in the legislature. Oops.

Or maybe Schapira’s ratings on didn’t quite stand out. Students didn’t take kindly to his condescension, impatience and lack of responsiveness too well. Not qualities voters are looking for in a congressman.

Schapira has a lot to boast about on his work experience too. At age 31, he’s never had a real job that he’s earned on his own.

And what legislation has “lawmaker” David Schapira passed for the good of his district? What jobs has he created for his district? Ask Michael Crow how much he’s really “helped out” ASU while in the legislature.

Lauded by anyone else for his specific record of achievement? Oops, he says he’s hamstrung because he’s a minority in a Republican-controlled state senate. Then why should he expect to get anything accomplished in Washington, D.C. as a minority US congressman?

If this is the same state senator David Schapira, then voting for congressional candidate David Schapira is like throwing good money after bad. It simply makes no sense to reward someone with a lackluster underachieving, under performing record.

Explore all you want David Schapira but the people of this new congressional district deserve way better.

Legislative District 17 (LD17) Republicans Pass Resolution Condemning AIRC


TEMPE – A. J. LaFaro, Chairman, LD17 Republicans, stated “we have witnessed one egregious act after another by the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission who have failed to demonstrate a sincere commitment to performing its responsibilities in an honest, independent and impartial fashion and to upholding public confidence in the integrity of the redistricting process.”

He went on to say “hundreds of us, like thousands of Arizona citizens throughout the State, have been actively involved in the Arizona Independent Redistricting Process – only to have our voices fall on the deaf ears of several of the Commission Members and the Executive Director.”  It’s for these reasons the LD17 Republicans felt compelled to draft and unanimously pass the attached LD17 Resolution 0001 on October 11, 2011, strongly condemning The Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission (AIRC).

LaFaro forwarded the resolution and cover letter to Governor Brewer, Attorney General Tom Horne, State Senate President Russell Pearce and State Speaker of the House Andy Tobin requesting they take action against the AIRC.

The resolution and letter were read into the public record at the October 18, 2011, AIRC meeting.



October 12, 2011

The Honorable Janice K. Brewer
Arizona Governor
Executive Tower
1700 West Washington Street
Phoenix, AZ 85007

The Honorable Tom Horne
Arizona Attorney General
Office of the Attorney General
1275 West Washington Street
Phoenix, AZ 85007

The Honorable Russell Pearce
Arizona Senate President Senate
1700 West Washington Street
Phoenix, AZ 85007

The Honorable Andy Tobin
Arizona Speaker of the House
House of Representatives
1700 West Washington Street
Phoenix, AZ 85007

SUBJ: LD17 Resolution 0001

Dear Governor Brewer, Attorney General Horne, Senate President Pearce and Speaker of the House Tobin:

I am writing you on behalf of my Republican Constituents and Precinct Committeemen in Legislative District 17 (LD17).

Hundreds of us, like thousands of Arizona citizens throughout the State, have been actively involved in the Arizona Independent Redistricting Process – only to have our voices fall on the deaf ears of several of the Commission Members and the Executive Director.

We have witnessed one egregious act after another by the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission who have failed to demonstrate a sincere commitment to performing its responsibilities in an honest, independent and impartial fashion and to upholding public confidence in the integrity of the redistricting process.

It is for these reasons the LD17 Republicans felt compelled to draft and unanimously pass the attached LD17 Resolution 0001.

The unacceptable 2001/2002 independent redistricting process, coupled with the current 2011/2012 fiasco clearly demonstrate that Proposition 106 has failed miserably and should be repealed immediately.

Warmest regards,

A. J. LaFaro
Chairman, LD17 Republicans


October, 2011



WHEREAS, the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission has knowingly violated its responsibilities for redistricting under Federal and Arizona law including, but not limited to, the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution, the Voting Rights Act, 42 U.S.C.A. 1973, et seq.; and Article 4 of the Arizona Constitution; and

WHEREAS, the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission has failed to demonstrate a sincere commitment to performing its responsibilities in an honest, independent and impartial fashion and to upholding public confidence in the integrity of the redistricting process; and

WHEREAS, the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission has knowingly violated its responsibilities for conducting open meetings to the public under Arizona law including, but not limited to, Title 38 of the Arizona Revised Statutes; and

WHEREAS, the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission has knowingly violated its procurement responsibilities to the public under Arizona law including, but not limited to, Title 41 of the Arizona Revised Statutes.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the Legislative District 17 Republicans, Maricopa County, State of Arizona, strongly condemn the partisan actions of the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission and recommends the following:

1. That Governor Jan Brewer, State of Arizona, remove the five members of the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission in accordance with Article 4 of the Arizona Constitution;

2. That Attorney General Tom Horne, State of Arizona, aggressively continue his criminal investigation and civil litigation against the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission;

3. That the Majority Leadership of the Senate and House of Representatives, State of Arizona, make written redistricting recommendations to the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission in accordance with Article 4 of the Arizona Constitution that are in the best interest of the State of Arizona, not the Commission’s favored special interest groups. Recommendations that eliminate the wholesale gerrymandering of Arizona and hijacking of the voters’ Constitutional and Democratic Rights.

It’s Time to Recall Rep. Ben Arredondo in the Spirit of Consistency: Update: Who’s Next? Arredondo or Arpaio?

Watching the recall effort take place in legislative district 18 one is left wondering why other recalls are not taking place elsewhere across the state, especially in legislative district 17.

Pearce recaller and failed Democratic US Senate candidate, Randy Parraz, likes to cite public policy differences as the reason for recalling Russell Pearce but fails to mention any of the other State Senators or Representatives who also voted for these same pieces of legislation.

Mr. Parraz, why not seek recall efforts against any of the other legislators who voted for these same public policy proposals? And if your motive is to recall someone who you disagree with on public policy issues, why haven’t you made a practice of this during all the off-year elections since you cannot seem to win elections (including your own) during the regular election cycle.

Pearce recaller’s motives don’t make sense if this is only about disagreements on public policy.

That’s why Pearce recallers like to bring up the Fiesta Bowl scandal as another reason for recalling Senator Pearce. They argue that Pearce accepted in-kind donations from Fiesta Bowl representatives over several years and then voted on legislation that affected the Fiesta Bowl.

Hmmmm… I thought that’s how lobbying worked at the State Capitol, especially when it comes down to labor and teachers unions donating gobs and gobs of money to Democrats.

What Pearce recallers fail to mention and the hypocrisy is GLARING, is that Fiesta Bowl representatives also gave in-kind donations to other legislators. At the top of the list is Legislative District 17 State Representative, Ben Arredondo who actually voted a $6,450,000 MILLION subsidy to bring the Insight Bowl from Phoenix to Tempe. Maybe a little more clarification on the gifts to Arredondo from a third party is appropriate at this point. Here’s what the Arizona Republic wrote on May 13th:

Gifts to Arredondo 

Arredondo, a former teacher and coach, was running for Tempe City Council in 2001 when seven Fiesta Bowl employees made $875 in contributions to his campaign. Three years later, four employees made another $1,200 in contributions. 

At that time, the Fiesta Bowl was headquartered in Tempe and played its game in ASU’s Sun Devil Stadium. 

In 2005, the Fiesta Bowl was looking to move its sister game, the Insight Bowl, out of downtown Phoenix. Negotiations began with Tempe, which was looking to replace the Fiesta Bowl at Sun Devil Stadium since the Fiesta was moving to Glendale. One of the key negotiators was Arredondo, according to Tempe Mayor Hugh Hallman. 

“It’s fair to say Ben Arredondo was intimately involved with ASU, Insight and the Fiesta Bowl,” Hallman said. “Ben Arredondo was continually involved in negotiations.” 

Hallman said Arredondo also was close to Husk, who, in addition to lobbying for the Fiesta Bowl, had been a paid consultant for Tempe. 

After reaching a memorandum of understanding in July 2005, the city the following year agreed to give the Fiesta Bowl a $6.45 million subsidy to host the Insight Bowl through 2013. The subsidy for each of the next two years is $850,000, while the final year’s payment is $900,000, according to the contract. 

In 2007, 2008 and 2009, the Fiesta Bowl said it provided Arredondo with expensive National Football League tickets, including 2009 Super Bowl tickets worth $4,000. In summer 2009, the bowl said, he called saying he wanted to go on a trip. The bowl paid all expenses for Arredondo and his wife, Ruthann, to travel to Minnesota to watch a college football game. 

“We paid for everything: the game, the hotel, the meals and the airfare,” Anthony Aguilar, the bowl’s director of community and corporate relations, told Fiesta Bowl investigators. 

Arredondo did not return calls to his house, where messages were left with his wife. Ruthann Arredondo declined to answer questions. 

On April 1, after the Fiesta Bowl investigative report had been released, Arredondo amended his financial disclosure forms for 2007, 2008 and 2009 to show he received a gift worth more than $500 from the Fiesta Bowl. The amended 2009 form indicates his wife also received a gift. The nature of the gifts was not disclosed.

Where am I going with all this? Here’s my point: The recall effort against Russell Pearce is NOT really about public policy. And it’s not even about the Fiesta Bowl in-kind donations.

The recall effort against Russell Pearce is about people who hate and don’t like Russell Pearce. It’s about working voters up into a rabid frenzy mob mentality to go after someone who you can later say, “We took down Russell Pearce!” If this was a regular election year, these frothing folks would not have anything to rally around because they’d be defending their own political turfs from an electorate that votes right of center. This is about Randy Parraz building a list of people to be exploited elsewhere against another Republican.

So my big question is why won’t the Parraz-led recallers be consistent and also recall Representative Ben Arredondo? The reality is they won’t because Arredondo votes the way they want him to vote.

My challenge is for them to stop being hypocrites and mount a recall effort against Ben Arredondo. And if they can’t find it in themselves to be intellectually honest and consistent, maybe its time for another group to form and recall Ben Arredondo.

UPDATE – November 9, 2011: 

The Recall election was a major success for Randy Parraz and crew. Election night, Parraz made the following statement to the Arizona Republic:

Parraz said he and his allies may go after other politicians whom he blames for poisoning Arizona’s political discourse, singling out Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was at Pearce’s side throughout the recall campaign.

“We’re looking at other people, like Sheriff Arpaio,” Parraz said. “If that’s the type of politics Sheriff Arpaio wants, we’ll see what happens in the new year.”

Don’t say we didn’t warn you…

Rerun: Anti-tax activist, A.J. LaFaro, to lead District 17 Republicans

The Arizona Republic ran the following article on July 23, 2011. Strangely, it does not appear anywhere on the Arizona Republic or azcentral websites. We thought it was worthy to reprint.  (Credit to Dianna M. Náñez)

The Maricopa County Republican Committee has elected A.J. LaFaro, a Tempe resident who led the fight against raising the city’s property-tax rate, as Legislative District 17 GOP chairman.

The district covers most of Tempe and part of south Scottsdale.

LaFaro said he was inspired to become more involved in politics after a months-long, but unsuccessful, battle against the rate increase.

Last Month, the Tempe City Council unanimously approved raising Tempe’s property-tax rate to $1.79 from $1.40 per $100 of assessed valuation.

LaFaro said he hopes to inspire other District 17 Republicans to support GOP candidates who are fiscally conservative.

“We look for strong conservative Republicans who sincerely believe in the Republican ideals in regards to smaller government, lower taxes, lower fees,” he said. “And even individuals who may label or register themselves Republican … make poor public-policy decisions in their career.”

He added, “In my opinion, (Mayor) Hugh Hallman and (Councilwoman) Onnie Shekerjian … made a poor public-policy decision (voting for the rate hike).”

Council members have said they supported the rate increase because Tempe is required to provide sufficient funding to pay for existing debt.

Hallman and Shekerjian also have said that policy Tempe recently approved, which would protect against residents having to pay higher taxes, should property valuations increase, was essential to their support of the rate change.

LaFaro said Republicans’ frustration with their municipal, state and national-level representatives will bring them to the polls next year.

He bashed District 17 legislators David Schapira, Ed Ableser and Ben Arredondo, calling them “progressive socialist Democrats,” and singled out Arredondo for violating the public’s trust when he accepted gifts from the Fiesta Bowl.

Arredondo was a registered Republican until last year when he registered as a Democrat to run for a House seat.

A.J. LaFaro elected LD-17 Republican Chairman


Rob Haney, MCRC Chairman, on the left swearing in A. J. LaFaro (Photo credit: Chuck Kirkhuff)

(Phoenix) Maricopa County Republican Committee (MCRC) is pleased to announce that Mr. A. J. LaFaro has been elected Chairman of LD17 (Legislative District 17).

LaFaro indicated he is honored to be elected Chairperson of LD17 and is committed to helping defeat Obama and Democrats at all levels of our government in 2012.

He said “unfortunately LD17 is currently represented by progressive socialist Democrats at the State level – David Schapira, Eddie Ableser and Ben Arredondo, but Republicans and many Independents are going to work hard to change that in 2012.“ He went on to say “all three men have betrayed the public’s trust, especially Arredondo with the tens of thousands of dollars in gifts he received from the Fiesta Bowl and Ableser for having the worst attendance record of a House member in the history of the State of Arizona.”

Republicans who live in LD17, Tempe and South Scottsdale who want to get actively involved in helping take back our country should contact the LD17 Republicans at

America can’t afford four more years of Obama!

The geographic area LD17 covers is most of Tempe and part of South Scottsdale.


(Gotta Press Release? Send it to and we’ll consider posting it!)

Wendy Rogers responds to David Schapira

In case you missed it, The East Valley Tribune ran a guest opinion by State Senate Minority Leader David Schapira on Tuesday. We won’t retread that article here but we will provide some space for the woman who should have been elected to that seat.

David Schapira is 100% Wrong
By Wendy Rogers

David Schapira, D-Tempe is 100% wrong.

I’ve owned an actual bricks-and-mortar business of 10 employees for 14 years. Employers like me pay 100% of unemployment insurance taxes in Arizona, not Schapira’s mythical employees “paying into the system”.

Unemployment insurance is an insurance product where experience ratings determine my business’s relative tax versus other employers’ taxes. The more my former employees draw Unemployment, the higher my set-aside rates are. Employers never see that money again, regardless of how well we take care of our employees. Moreover, employers like me pay Unemployment to both Arizona (dedicated toward the first 26 weeks of benefits) and the federal government. Combined – Arizona and the feds charge employers more than 3% on the first $7,000 of pay for each of their employees.

It’s true, extended benefits currently are being paid from the fed’s general fund – which these days means more debt; but how that debt is reimbursed is still “our problem” as businesses and taxpayers. We don’t differentiate between a dollar taken as federal tax vis-a-vis state tax as the governor and legislators do. They seem to think if it doesn’t come out of state funds; it must be free, right?

Bottom Line: Keeping Arizonans on Unemployment prolongs the ill effects and adversity of our sick market. It aggravates job recovery by spiraling down a deepening debt which makes recovery even more uncertain.

David Schapira should recognize who’s really paying for these benefits instead of making specious claims about pots of “free money”.

Let’s end funding for Clean Elections

From the last campaign cycle, we now discover Clean Elections money bought expensive laptops, paid sign helpers, and funded parties. We are all human, thus tend to be less stewardly with other people’s money than we are with our own.

I understand because I just ran a traditionally funded campaign for State Senate in Tempe and south Scottsdale (District 17) and cut costs by riding my bicycle to knock on 10,000 doors. I chose not to fund my campaign with Clean Elections money because Arizona is in a financial crisis. I considered it a wonderful privilege to run. By the end of the campaign, 400 generous people donated to my race. I started by asking ex-military friends who served alongside me to donate, then asked Tempe and south Scottsdale friends and voters upon whose doors I knocked. Also like-minded, small-business-oriented political action committees donated to me such as the dairymen, cattlemen, CPAs, cotton growers, osteopaths, optometrists, and farmers; even though by law their donations could only total a small fraction of the final sum. I accepted no money from unions or corporations. Some might argue that fundraising is too time consuming. I run a small business with 10 full-time employees, plus we have two ASU student kids. So I just applied my motto of “Work hard. Follow through.”

We live in a magnificent state and a great nation, uniquely different from countries where I served half of my 20-year Air Force career, where going door-to-door to meet voters is not commonplace. Let’s eliminate Clean Elections and follow a back-to-basics approach to political campaigning. Arizona politics would be strengthened by a resurgence of responsibility-taking. Eliminating Clean Elections would be a great first step toward restoring public faith in our state government.

Wendy Rogers was the recent Republican nominee for State Senate in Legislative District 17. She was the leading Republican vote getter in nearly every single precinct of LD-17, exceeding both Governor Brewer and Congressman-elect Schweikert by 3 to 5 percentage points in all 69 precincts. Her rag-tag, shoestring-budget campaign, while still ‘amassing’ a respectable amount of $88,000 of privately raised money, paled in comparison to what a US congressional campaign spent. So it goes to show what boots on the ground and bike tire rubber can accomplish.

Joe Arpaio Endorses Augustus Shaw

Augustus Shaw

For Immediate Release: Monday, February 8, 2010

TEMPE, AZ – District 17 House Republican Candidate Augustus Shaw announced today that he received the endorsement of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

“Augustus Shaw is the only Republican candidate that I will support for District 17 House. He has a proven track record of leadership and offers the voters in Tempe and Scottsdale a real choice this November. They can either vote for tax-and-spend liberals or they can send a true conservative to the legislature to fight for lower taxes, less spending and getting our state back on track,” said Arpaio.

Commenting on the endorsement, Augustus Shaw stated “I’m honored to have Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s endorsement. He has been a leader in our state’s fight against illegal immigration and his ‘get tough’ policies on criminals have yielded a lower crime rate across Maricopa County.”

Shaw brings a wealth of experience to the race. Augustus, an attorney by trade, is the founding attorney and managing member of Shaw & Lines, LLC, a law firm that employs 8 Arizonans. As well as being the 1st Vice Chairman of the Arizona Republican Party, Augustus currently serves on the City of Tempe Transportation Commission and has served on the City of Tempe Redevelopment Review Commission. He has also served on other various Boards and Commissions, including the Maricopa County Bar Association Foundation, Maricopa County Board of Adjustment and The Leadership Centre.

“Arizona is sadly in a state of disarray. A new vision is needed in order to solve our State’s economic problems. I am running because I believe District 17 and Arizona can and should have a representative who puts the interests of working families and taxpayers first. We can and should do better,” added Shaw.

Augustus is married to Andrada Shaw, also a Tempe native and has two wonderful children, Ezekiel Augustus Shaw, age 5 and Audrey Isabella Shaw, age 2.

To find out more about Augustus, please visit

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