Everybody’s Gotta Have Priorities, And The AZGOP Has Got ‘Em

Posted by Craig McDermott, cross-posted from Random Musings as sort of an update to a previous post…

…Unfortunately for the people of Arizona, the GOP's priorities are (more than) slightly skewed in favor of Big Business and in opposition to the interests of the people of AZ…

There are many reasons that the Republican leadership of the Arizona Legislature might get the Governor to call a special session of the legislature.

They could do it to address the woefully inadequate funding of the state's K-12 education system.  But they won't…

They could do it to address the state's crumbling and hazardous infrastructure.  But they won't…

They could do it to address the lax oversight of privately-operated prisons in Arizona.  But they won't…

They could do it to address the removal of an anti-union amendment to the AZ Constitution from November's ballot.  But they…hold on!  While failing schools, bursting dams, and escaped murderers roaming Arizona aren't worthy of their attention, the union-busting efforts of their corporate masters may just be the inspiration for them to gather in downtown Phoenix in early August.

From the article (linked to "gather" above):

Republican legislative leaders are planning a special session beginning Monday in a last-ditch bid to put an anti-union measure on the November ballot.

House Majority Leader John McComish said Wednesday there appear to be enough GOP lawmakers both available and willing to support the measure for a three-day session beginning Monday. The goal would be to fix the wording of Proposition 108 to correct flaws that the Arizona Supreme Court ruled Tuesday make it illegal to put to voters.

Of course, even if they pull off the special session starting Monday, it will take three days to legally pass anything, and the deadline for final ballot language is Tuesday, so no worries, right?

Not so fast.  They have a rather "flexible with the rules" kind of Secretary of State operating at their beck-and-call.

From later in the story –

Secretary of State Ken Bennett said the deadline for putting something on the ballot is actually Tuesday.

The Arizona Constitution requires that all measures be read on three separate days, making Wednesday the earliest day for final action for a session set to begin Monday after lawmakers return from a conference in San Diego.

Those rules can be waived with a two-thirds vote of both the House and Senate. But with every Democrat opposed to the plan — and Republicans not controlling that many seats — they have to take the full three days.

Bennett said, though, he can reserve space if it’s clear on Tuesday that there are the votes for final approval next Wednesday.

Something tells me that if it was the Medical Marijuana question that was thrown off of the ballot, the Rs wouldn't be so enthusiastic about a special session…

One response to “Everybody’s Gotta Have Priorities, And The AZGOP Has Got ‘Em

  1. Rep. Steve Farley told a District 28 meeting last night that Democrats are discussing not showing up for the special session and staging a counter-event in support of the working men and women of this state. They cannot deny a quorum if all Republicans show up (50% plus one), and as you point out, denying waiver of the rules does little when Ken Bennett is flexible in his “drop dead” date, as he did previously with Prop. 100, to accommodate the GOP governor and legislature. Just how much is this special session going to cost taxpayers?

    BTW, the “card check” provision that this measure is designed to attack was stripped out of the Employee Free Choice Act bill in Congress, and even with that concession, the bill has languished in committee with no action. Should Congress ever pass a “card check” provision, federal law preempts conflicting state laws in this field, so the Arizona law would be void. All of this is just a useless exercise in “Republicans hate labor.”