Maricopa County sent two ballots — yes, TWO BALLOTS — to some voters for the August primary. Enough is enough. Call on Maricopa County Recorder Helen Purcell to modernize our elections >> goo.gl/xbGBRT
Maricopa County is having trouble administering an election. Again. This time county officials sent two early ballots to some voters who recently changed their registration. Our elections shouldn’t be this complicated. Tell Maricopa County Recorder Helen Purcell to modernize our elections. Click the image below to sign the petition
Progress Now Arizona Calls on Representative Sonny Borrelli to Withdraw From Race Following Domestic Violence Allegations
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics Washington Requests IRS Investigation into Dark Money Group’s Spending in 2014 Governor’s Race
Phoenix, AZ- When the first drafts of the proposed state budget came out there was something odd. Someone had inserted $5 million into the budget for universities, but the money, which would automatically be appropriated every year, is earmarked only for “economic freedom schools.” That’s code for Koch Brothers University. Although no one at the Capitol will say who inserted the $5 million, it’s not hard to imagine. The Koch Brothers largely funded Governor Doug Ducey’s election campaign, and he continues to have strong ties to them.
Progress Now has received a confidential document from the Koch Brothers organization, Americans for Prosperity. Titled the Winter 2015 Partner Prospectus, the document details how the Koch Brother’s organization plans to infiltrate every aspect of our society, from school boards to public universities, with their small- government, anti-union, pro-corporation agenda. The document includes plans to infiltrate public universities, like Arizona State University and University of Arizona. The specific excerpt, titled, “Creating a Culture of Freedom,” outlines specific steps to pushing Koch Brothers ideology into higher education institutions.
SEE DOCUMENT HERE: https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/2035387-merged-document-2.html
The plan? Lawmakers first debate ideas and enact policy, then transform those complex policies into relatable educational materials and distribute for citizens and lawmakers to understand. After that, think tanks analyze and test academic findings to produce official policy papers for public consumption. Finally, get scholars and academia to devise and test these theories.
“Think tanks take amorphous ideas to conduct further research and analysis to produce policy white papers. Educational outreach groups transform white papers into relatable products and educations materials for everyday Americans to learn and understand,” it says on page 14 of the Partner Prospectus.
But the only theories Americans for Prosperity and the Koch Brothers are interested in are the ones that bolster their pro-business, anti-worker, anti-public education policies. These are ideas the Koch Brothers want to push into the minds of Arizona’s university students. ASU’s Center for the Study of Economic Liberty was created in November 2014. Shortly after Governor Doug Ducey was elected. The Center was also funded with $3.5 million from the Charles Koch Charitable Foundation, the same brothers who bankrolled Ducey’s campaign.
The center claims it’s “committed to the study of the role economic liberty and the free enterprise system play in increasing opportunity and improving well-being…seeks to advance our understanding through independent thinking, scholarly debate, factual argument, and clear, honest communication of research and policy findings.”
But what does it say about a public university that allows the Koch Brothers to purchase its brand to legitimatize an anti-public education political agenda? In an Arizona Republic article Doug Ducey’s spokesman Daniel Scarpinato said, “The governor … believes it’s important that students in our university system are exposed to a broad range of viewpoints and academic views on a number of issues, including economics,” spokesman said. “So this fits in with that priority.
Josselyn Berry, Interim Executive Director of Progress Now Arizona said, “You would think that an economic freedom center that pushes Ayn Rand libertarianism could follow its own propaganda and survive without taxpayer-funded government assistance. But you’d be wrong. This appropriation discredits Arizona’s public universities while short changing our higher education system as a whole.”
PHOENIX- A new Public Policy Polling survey commissioned by Progress Now Arizona, finds that a trio of bills under discussion in the Arizona legislature related to campaign finance, overriding citizen initiatives and changing Arizona’s Independent Redistricting Commission are supported by fewer than one in four voters, and large majorities of voters between 66 and 78 percent of voters say they oppose the bills HCR2023, HCR2009, and SB1516, after hearing arguments against them.
HCR 2023 would dismantle Proposition 105 passed by voters in 1998, and allow the Arizona legislature to repeal or amend any initiative or referendum voters worked hard to pass. HCR2009 would make the Independent Redistricting Commission into a partisan and elected position, letting politicians to draw future district lines in their favor. SB1516 completely rewrites Arizona campaign finance law, and creates loopholes that would let millions of anonymous dollars buy Arizona elections and politicians through independent expenditures.
Representative Rebecca Rios read the results on the poll on the Arizona House Floor this morning.
“I think its important for us to have a pulse on the community and state and understand what Arizona believes in to accurately represent our constituents and the people of Arizona. Again, it’s very important if were representing the state of Arizona that we listen to the voters and not assume that we know when passing legislation here,” Rios said.
At least 70% of voters say they would be less likely to vote for any candidate for office who supported any of the bills. This coalition of voters is diverse and broad-based, and includes majorities of men and women, all age groups, Democrats, Independents and Republicans.
– Just 22% of voters support SB1516 on dark money compared to 48% who oppose. After hearing arguments against the bill, 70% of voters say they oppose it including 65% of Republicans. 81% say they’d be less likely to vote for a candidate who supported the bill.
– Only 23% of voters support HCR2023, which allows politicians to override the Voter Protection Act, compared to 47% who oppose. After hearing arguments against the bill, 66% of voters oppose it including 63% of Republican voters. 82%say they’d be less likely to vote for a candidate who supported the bill.
– Only 19% of voters say they support HCR2009, which would alter Arizona’s Independent Redistricting Commission, while a majority of 54% oppose the bill. After hearing arguments against the bill, 78% of voters oppose it including 70% of Republican voters. 73% say they’d be less likely to vote for a candidate who supported the bill.
*PPP surveyed 573 Arizona voters from March 21-22, 2016. The margin of error is +/-4.1%. This poll was conducted by automated telephone interviews.
Phoenix, Ariz. – October 14, 2015 – Randy Pullen, former Chair of Arizona’s Republican party, sent out a tweet during last night’s debate in response to the Black Lives Matter movement.
Pullen’s tweet received several responses from activists and local reporters.
“You knew all this ‘Second Amendment’ posturing was always about white people only having guns, right?” tweeted local blogger Donna Gratehouse.
The responses didn’t appear to faze Pullen as his tweet was left in tact.
“Randy Pullen thinks his racist tweet was funny,” stated Julie Erfle, executive director of ProgressNow Arizona, “but for the hundreds of thousands of Americans who have been affected by gun violence, this isn’t a laughing matter.
Pullen’s tweet underscores the importance of the Black Lives Matter movement and the disconnect between the Republican party and communities of color.”
Phoenix, Ariz. – September 28, 2015 – In a new ranking of the nation’s best and worst states to be a public school teacher, Arizona ranks third from the bottom among all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The rankings by WalletHub, an online personal finance information clearinghouse, are based on public education investment and teacher salary statistics from 2014-15.
“With strained budgets inflating classroom sizes and stagnating teacher pay, it’s no wonder Arizona teachers are fleeing the profession and leaving our schools with a shortage of teachers and experience,” stated Julie Erfle, executive director of ProgressNow Arizona.
The WalletHub ranking points out that Arizona has one of the highest pupil-to-teacher ratios and the lowest spending per student.
“The future of hundreds of thousands of Arizona students as well as the economic future of our state is at risk,” stated Erfle. “The time is now to switch course and put funding for our educators and schools at the top of our legislative priority list.”
Tempe, Ariz. – September 16, 2015 – A citywide survey among likely voters in Tempe shows overwhelming support for earned paid sick time. The poll, conducted by Lake Research Partners, found 80% of likely voters support a measure that offers up to 5 days of earned paid sick time annually. Only 16% of voters opposed the measure, a rare feat in today’s political climate.
The survey also found that half of voters would be more likely to cast a vote in favor of a candidate running for Tempe City Council if that candidate supported the earned paid sick time measure. On Thursday, council members will have an opportunity to show their support for this policy by voting to advance a proposed ordinance.
Support for the ordinance is being spearheaded by a local coalition, Healthy Families, Healthy Workplaces. The coalition consists of public health organizations, sexual and domestic violence community members, women’s organizations, faith communities, and nonprofit and service providers.
“We are hopeful our city council members will listen to the wishes of their constituents, honor the needs of sexual and domestic violence survivors, and move this ordinance forward,” stated Allie Bones, CEO of the Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence and member of the Healthy Families, Healthy Workplaces coalition. “With support of this magnitude, it’s clear that Tempe residents see the value in offering earned paid sick time for employees to care for themselves and their families without risk of losing their job or compromising their safety.”
The Healthy Families, Healthy Workplaces coalition believes hardworking people and their families should not have to risk grave financial hardship because of a common illness or safety concern and that access to paid sick days should not be reliant on where someone lives or what job they hold.
For a breakdown of this survey, including questions polled, please click on this link.