Will Gov. Brewer Veto (More) Conservative Bills?


25 April 2011

Dear Arizona Taxpayer,

AFP-Arizona’s 2011 Legislative Scorecard (the 27th annual scorecard put out by AFP-Arizona and the Arizona Federation of Taxpayers) will not be published until this summer, and will end up scoring hundreds of tax, budget, and regulatory bills. But with the close of the 2011 legislative session on Wednesday, we are issuing a preliminary report on how Governor Jan Brewer and the Arizona Legislature performed, based upon the bills having the largest projected fiscal impact on Arizona taxpayers, consumers, and producers.

Action Item—Possible Brewer Vetoes

At this point, it is unclear how Governor Jan Brewer will perform on this year’s Scorecard. She will do poorly if she follows the bad advice of the Arizona Republic’s editorial board and vetoes the municipal managed competition reform (SB 1322), the interstate health insurance competition bill (SB 1593), and the statutory spending limit (HB 2707). Vetoes on those three bills would land her below 50 percent, in the category of “Friend of Big Government.” If she signs all three into law, she will score in the high 70-percent range (“Friend of the Taxpayer”).

Please call and email Governor Brewer TODAY and ask her to sign those three bills.

To send Gov. Brewer an email, use her web contact page: http://www.azgovernor.gov/Contact.asp

To contact Brewer’s policy staff, send emails to Page Gonzalez (pgonzalez@az.gov), Eileen Klein (eklein@az.gov), Michael Hunter (mhunter@az.gov), and Don Hughes (dhughes@az.gov).

The phone numbers for Gov. Brewer’s office are (602) 542-1361 and (602) 542-4331

For a one-page pdf flyer you can print out and take to your neighbors/precinct residents, use this link: http://static.taxcutsforall.com//files/sb1322brewer.pdf

For more information about the three bills, use the links on this page: http://www.americansforprosperity.org/042511-gov-jan-brewer-veto-alert

Arizona’s Legislative Majority Performs Well

Overall, the typical Republican Legislator did a very good job on fiscal policy during the 2011 legislative session—thanks in large part to strong pressure from taxpayer activists and tea partiers. Except for a handful of outliers, Arizona’s GOP Senators and Representatives voted in favor of the following pro-taxpayer measures:

  • Balanced budgets for FY 2011 and 2012 that include minimal gimmicks and that put the state on course to retire debt;
  • Spending limit bills that would place obstacles in the way of out-of-control spending by future Legislators and Governors;
  • The most comprehensive municipal services privatization bill in the country;
  • Limits on property tax levy increases in local-government secondary taxing districts;
  • Creation of school choice education savings accounts for children with learning disabilities;
  • Expansion of Arizona’s existing school choice tax credit program;
  • Legislation to allow interstate health insurance competition in the individual health market;
  • Reform of state employee pensions, which are currently trending toward bankruptcy; and,
  • Transparency bills requiring local governments and school districts to post their budgets in prominent places on their websites.

For Gov. Brewer and for the typical majority Legislator, the high base scores resulting from the votes enumerated above may be pushed slightly higher on the final Scorecard, given that AFP-Arizona has yet to grade hundreds of bills with low point totals. Legislators introduced dozens of good bills this session, and some of them made it to the Governor’s desk. (Of course, there were also many bad bills with low point totals, and we will likely discover some fiscal landmines among the dozens of bills that were passed quickly in the closing hours of the session).

Although typical majority members in both chambers will score highly on the Scorecard, it appears that the typical Senator will do somewhat better than the typical Representative. Given preliminary estimates, the typical Senator will score in the high 80-precent range (“Champion of the Taxpayer”), while the typical Representative will score in the high 70-percent range (“Friend of the Taxpayer”). Senators will likely score higher in large part for the following reasons:

  • The Senate version of the budget included heavier budget cuts;
  • The Senate’s spending limit referenda were constitutional, voter-approved measures (making them very difficult for politicians to override), whereas the House spending limit bill that went to the Governor’s desk would be statutory (and thus could be set aside by simple majorities in the House and Senate); and,
  • The constitutional Paycheck Protection referendum (SCR 1028) failed to move in the House, having been supplanted by a version of the reform (SB 1365) that included unprincipled (and voter-unfriendly) carve-outs and that failed to get the necessary forty “emergency” votes in the House to prevent the government-worker unions from taking the flawed version of the bill to the ballot.

More about the Legislative Scorecard:

Use the link below to study AFP-Arizona’s scoring rubric (page 3), and to view hypothetical scores for Governor Brewer, the typical majority Senator, and the typical majority Representative (pages 4-6). For policy summaries of AFP-Arizona’s key bills, see pages 7-11.


The AFP-Arizona Legislative Scorecard weights fiscal policy and regulatory bills according to their projected dollar impact to Arizona taxpayers, consumers, and producers ($1 million equals one point). The AFP-Arizona Scorecard does not grade bills relating to constitutional, electoral, moral/social, or criminal-law matters, except insofar as those bills are projected to have a clear and significant financial impact on taxpayers, consumers, and producers.

To view AFP-Arizona’s 2010 Legislative Scorecard and Legislators’ cumulative averages since 2005, go to this URL (be advised that this cumulative scorecard does not include this year’s votes): http://static.taxcutsforall.com//files/azlsc2005-2010final.pdf

Please Remain Vigilant!

Grassroots taxpayer activists and tea party members can help us greatly in promoting free markets by reminding Governor Jan Brewer and Arizona’s Legislators that we will hold them strictly accountable in 2011 and 2012. We hope that the AFP-Arizona Legislative Scorecard proves to be a very helpful tool for activists in demanding fiscal accountability from their elected officials.

For Liberty, Tom

Tom Jenney
Arizona Director
Americans for Prosperity



  1. JumpingThruHoops says

    Over the past few years, I have observed that some of our best elected representatives receive poor scores from The Americans for Property and agent, Tom Jenny’, who in turn receives support from Charles and David Koch, the libertarian billionaires who fund everything from right-wing economic policy, union-busting, and anti-climate-change advocacy to civil liberties. Among those receiving poor marks is our own Speaker of the House, Kirk Adams, a very good Republican in many voter’s views. So not all our legistlaturers are Libertarian and thus publishing scores that compare them to Libitarian ideals is perhaps flawed. Actually the lastest figures from the Sec. Of State show that only 1% of registered Arizonans hold to the libertarian philosophy officially. Arizonans, being independent minded folks, still choose to elect people that don’t “make the grade” of Libertarian views. And now trying to quote “softly bully” the governor into signing bills she judges imprudent is a form of using this BLOG to bully.

    According to Wikipedia: ” David Koch supports gay marriage and stem-cell research.[3] He is against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and was against the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.[3] Koch is unsure if global warming is caused by humans, and thinks a warmer planet would be good because “[t]he Earth will be able to support enormously more people because a far greater land area will be available to produce food”.[3]

  2. When bills are poorly written and rushed pieces of crap, Brewer should veto them even if the concept behind the bill itself is good. That’s one of the functions of a veto, to tell the legislature to go back and do it right.

  3. Wow, how fast those HIghground interns and Chamber Lobbyists are able to scramble up a response. Chuck should draft his veto response on the HG letter head the way he responded to the early critics of Jans when she was slinging that Tax Increase Initiative.
    VSB does have a point about the pieces of crap that come out of the legislature in the middle of the night. These legislators actually get paid every week, so they can cram a bunch of “work” into the last couple days of the session and pass something in the middle of the night.
    Does anybody else get paid to do work in such a disjointed and confused manner? Maybe if they were honest and did their work in a straight forward way, they could work during regular business hours, produce a quality product and get something done.

    Watch for the spin and excuses from the Govs office. She will twist and turn and look for some kind of plausible way to make everybody happy. You people arent really stupid enough to believe that you can even contact the Govs henchmen are you? Your emails will get printed, put in a bin and you will get a form letter in about 3 weeks from an intern. What a joke.

  4. Paula Pennypacker says

    “Does anybody else get paid to do work in such a disjointed and confused manner?”

    The short answer to your question Fred is — no! I am stunned that the legislature can operate under the cover of darkness — late into the night to pass bills. So much for transparency in state government.

  5. So 3 votes swings her over 20%?? So that means there will be less than 15 votes to base this scorecard on… Its not really much of a sample is it?

  6. Nordine Crub says

    We can only hope!

  7. Brewer’s TEMPER TANTRUM:

    Your Honorable Governor Brewer, respect is earned not bestowed.

    Your Honorable Governor Brewer crying foul in the political arena for what is normal and customary is so peevish.

    You what?

    Don’t like criticism concerning some of your vetos so far this session!

    You WHAT?

    Threaten to impose more vetos if this criticism doesn’t stop immediately!

    YOU WHAT, threatened who in the Senate?

    Your Honorable Governor Brewer, veto a bill because it is bad legislation. Veto bills with sound reasoning to do so. Well let me take that back, sound reasoning seems to be absent in your case.

    Anyway, good luck with your recall!

  8. While the “conservative” AZ legislature diddled around with new debt and spend “Authorities” like the “Commerce” Authority and diddled with specialized tax cuts for their friends, they missed out on the greatest conservative revolution of the year, breaking the public employee unions.

    Unfortunately, the public employee unions have several “hired hands” in the “conservative” legislature such as (note any relationship between these people? there is one!!! a big one!!!)

    Russell Pearce (police unions) , Kirk Adams (police and fire unions) , Adam Driggs (fire union), Rich Crandall (teachers union), Eddie Farnsworth.

    Teapartiers, read the above very carefully and pay attention: THEY ARENT CONSERVATIVES!

  9. Was there any other reason given why Brewer did not sign SB 1593?

    Is it reported here

    She said it was “not subject to the typical public input that such major policy decisions should receive.”

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