Tucson Progressive

Pamela Powers Hannley, a progressive voice for Arizona

La Brewja’s next term: More lawsuits, more debt, more poverty, more job cuts, less education

Jan Brewer, Arizona’s most recent Secretary of State to slide into the governor’s post, won the election last night against Attorney General Terry Goddard.

Now what? As the Three Sonorans wrote this morning, we will have no one but the Republicans to blame now for the course of our state. The Party of No will have to come up with some ideas.

I know one thing we are in store — a continuation of Arizona’s meth lab of democracy and the continuation of frivolous, money-wasting lawsuits.

The bottomline is: the Republican-controlled Arizona Legislature doesn’t know how the US government works. In a nutshell, the states have authority over some tasks, and the feds have authority over other tasks. Also, the state is not supposed to pass laws that blatantly favor or discriminate against certain groups.

Not knowing these simple facts has mired our state in multiple lawsuits.

Thanks to the Legislature’s hubris, Arizona finds itself in several, money-wasting, high-profile lawsuits. Three, possibly four of these lawsuits have either landed with the Supreme Court or are on their way there.

The most infamous of these cases is SB1070, the state’s stab at dictating immigration enforcement (which falls under the purview of the federal government), but there are several others. Here is a recap from the Arizona Daily Star.

Two hearings are scheduled for next month, one involving a spat between the Tohono O’odham Nation and the U.S. government, the other to decide the legality of state tax credits to help children attend private and parochial schools. [1]

In December, the justices will review a three-year-old law that lets state judges decide if Arizona firms have knowingly hired undocumented workers and, if so, to suspend their licenses or put them out of business. [2]

And the court has all but decided to review the matching-funds provision of the state’s law on public financing of elections. Justices already have indicated they have a problem with a federal appeals court ruling declaring the funding legal: The justices let stand a ban on matching funds for the current election, changing the rules in the middle of the campaign. [3]

SB1070 is winding its way through lower courts now and will most likely go to the Supreme Court in their next session. [4]

But wait, there’s more!

The passage of Prop 106, the so-called Healthcare Freedom Act, will likely land Arizona in court also, since it is an attempt by the state to preempt federal law– something state’s aren’t allowed to do. I, for one, like several measures included in healthcare reform (ie, elimination of denial of coverage based upon preexisting conditions, coverage of college students on parents’ plans, the ability to get better insurance rates by buying into pools, provision of screening and basic care). Arizona voters said yesterday that they don’t want any of this. I guess all of you who voted fro Prop 106 are independently wealthy– or more likely duped by the advertising.  [5]

And, Russell Pearce has vowed to make repeal of the 14th Amendment one of his top priorities at the beginning of the 2011 session. (Of course, eliminating a Constitutional Amendment is also not within the states’ purview, but that hasn’t stopped Pearce before.) [6]

Arizona law requires the state government to balance its budget– something Brewer and the Republicans failed to do in the last session. (Oh, yeah, Jan lied in her ads. Surprise. Surprise.) Since they are masters in short-sighted reasoning, they were counting on stealing funds from the state land trust and the First Things First early childhood development fund– but the voters rejected Props 301 and 302 yesterday.

So, Arizona is millions of dollars in the hole– due to decades of Republican control– plus the state is fighting several expensive legal battles– because the Legislature doesn’t know how government is structured in the US.

Now what? How can a know-nothing Legislature + a one-issue governor solve these major problems, while wasting our money on lawsuits that could have been avoided?

One thing for sure, the Republicans will cling to the failed policies of trickle down economics and continue to attempt balancing the state’s budget on the backs of workers (with more job cuts) and children (with more cuts to education). We are in for some dark days, people.

16 comments on “La Brewja’s next term: More lawsuits, more debt, more poverty, more job cuts, less education

  1. yayabrotherhood
    November 3, 2010

    What a sad and bitter life you must live.

    • Pamela
      November 3, 2010

      So, what do you think they will do?
      The Republicans can’t do what they have promised — cut taxes + reduce the deficit– without elimination of whole programs. Even ending both wars won’t fill the budget gap especially if they extend tax cuts to the rich — one item that makes up 1/3 of the budget deficit. Their “solutions” are soundbites based upon fuzzy math.
      I can hear the whining now, “Yeah, small guv’ment, but don’t cut my [fill in the blank with the pet programs you are benefiting from].”

  2. Hugh Holub
    November 3, 2010

    Actually an excellebnt case for ARizona’s 51st state…Baja Arizona.

    • Pamela
      November 3, 2010

      Hugh– exactly. Did you hear Jeff Rogers today on NPR? He mentioned Baja Arizona.

      • Hugh Holub
        November 3, 2010

        Wish I had…. the Washington Post has a neat map about Congressional District races showing Arizona all red…except the southern third of the state…CD 7 and CD 8….which looks a lot like Baja Arizona.

        Just think of where we’d be if our lives weren’t being run by Brewer et al…all the good things we could be doing down here….

  3. Pingback: La Brewja’s next term: More lawsuits, more debt, more poverty, more job cuts … – Tucson Citizen « Cheap Life Insurance Costs

  4. Daniel
    November 3, 2010

    Suck it, liberal Pinkos!

    • Art Jacobson
      November 3, 2010

      Thank you for your thoughtful and insightful response.

  5. tiponeill
    November 3, 2010

    we will have no one but the Republicans to blame now for the course of our state.
    now ? – we have had no one to blame for years – there is no change here.
    The Party of No will have to come up with some ideas.
    They have plenty of ideas – more of the same. Arizona voters seem to enjoy being the laughingstock of the nation.

    • Pamela
      November 3, 2010

      Re: “no one to blame”– I was referring to the AZ Legislature’s drumbeat trying to pin the state’s economic mess on Janet Napolitano’s 6 years in the governor’s mansion.
      Definitely, the Republicans’ “Pledge to America” is more of the same B.S. I can’t believe so many people were dumb enough to buy it– again!

  6. galse
    November 3, 2010

    La Brewja Y el Bob Osos (aka Grijalva).
    We get what we deserve (vote for)!

    “I will not let you down, I will not sell you out, and I will not misrepresent you,” … Hello Raul, what do you call your boycott?  You abandoned your constituents.  You sold us out. You did NOT represent us!

  7. Jim Hannley
    November 3, 2010

    Pamela, you have presented a very good review of the current Constitution-bashing State Leg. Also interesting is the pathetic responses from those who support the ignorant Governor and Republican legislative leadership.

  8. galse
    November 3, 2010

    Rep or Dems… Doesn’t seem to matter much.  Look at the “Baja Arizona” governments.  We’re in the red and cannot balance the budget.  We have one the highest sales taxes in the nation for a city our sizze and what do we have to show for it?
    Brewer/Grijalva, NO difference!  They are in it to keep their office and not to serve their contiutent period!

    • Pamela
      November 3, 2010

      A big part of the reason the City of Tucson is in the red is that the Arizona Legislature dramatically cut revenue-sharing with the cities. In the past, the Legislature has given a portion of cities’ collected taxes back to the cities. They cut revenue sharing with all Arizona cities by millions of dollars– another gimmick to make it appear as if they are seriously trying to balance the budget.

      • galse
        November 3, 2010

        There are plenty of “reasons” why we can’t do this or that.  You and I can go back and forth for a year giving examples to support each other’s view.  The bottom line is that Baja Arizona cannot (for many reasons) accomplish what many other cities/counties can with similar resources.  Rios Nuevo, City budget, growth, traffic, etc. 

        Rep or Dem, do you really feel that your best interests are represented?

  9. Pingback: A ‘Descent into Madness’? You be the judge - Tucson Progressive

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The Tucson Progressive: Pamela Powers Hannley

I stand on the side of Love. I believe in kindness to all creatures on Earth and the inherent self-worth of all individuals--not just people who agree with me or look like me.

Widespread economic and social injustice prompted me to become a candidate for the Arizona House, representing Legislative District 9 in the 2016 election. My platform focuses on economic reforms to grow Arizona's economy, establish a state-based public bank, fix our infrastructure, fully fund public education, growlocal small businesses and community banks, and put people back to work at good-paying jobs. I also stand for equal rights, choice, and paycheck fairness for women. I am running as a progressive and running clean.

My day job is managing editor for the American Journal of Medicine, an academic medicine journal with a worldwide circulation. In addition, my husband and I co-direct Arizonans for a New Economy, Arizona's public banking initiative. I am a member of the national board of the Public Banking Institute, and I am co-chair of the Arizona Democratic Progressive Caucus, the largest caucus of the Arizona Democratic Party.

I am a published author, photographer, videographer, clay artist, mother, nana, and wife. I have a bachelor's degree in journalism from Ohio State University and a masters in public health from the University of Arizona. I grew up in Amherst, Ohio, but I have lived in Tucson, Arizona since 1981. I am a proud member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson and the Public Relations Society of America.

My Tucson Progressive blog and Facebook page feature large doses of liberal ideas, local, state, and national politics, and random bits of humor. I also blog at Blog for Arizona and the Huffington Post.

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