Category Archives: Charter Schools

LD9 Debate Reveals Stark Contrasts between Democrat & Republican Candidates (video)

Rep. Pamela Powers Hannley (right) and Republican challenger Ana Henderson.

Rep. Pamela Powers Hannley (right) and Republican challenger Ana Henderson.

Can’t decide how to vote in the November 6 election? If you live in Legislative District 9, check out the LD9 debate before casting your vote.

The debate video below reveals clear differences between the candidates on key issues such as the minimum wage, food security, the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), climate change, abortion, gun violence, and more.

Five people are running for the three LD9 Legislative seats: incumbent Democrats Reps. Randy Friese and Pamela Powers Hannley (me), Republican challenger Ana Henderson, and Senate candidates former Democratic representative Victoria Steele and Republican write-in candidate Randy Fleenor.

The Citizens Clean Elections Commission (CCEC) conducts candidate debates, videotapes them, and stores them on their website and YouTube channel. If you live in a district other than LD9, check out the CCEC archive for the other 2018 debate videos. For Southern Arizona Legislative Districts, here are links to debates for LD2, LD3, LD10, LD11, LD8, and LD14. (The LD9 debate is embedded below.

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The Arizona Republic endorses Kathy Hoffman for Superintendent of Public Instruction

Four years ago it was widely assumed that David Garcia would be elected Superintendent of Public Instruction. His opponent, Diane Douglas, barely ran a visible campaign for the office. But due to a GOP voter registration edge in Arizona and mindless GOP tribalism in the voter booth, Diane Douglas won in the shocker of the 2014 election.

Douglas has been controversial and a complete disaster during her tenure as Superintendent of Public Instruction. This is why she was defeated for reelection in the GOP primary back in August. Hindsight is always 20-20. These Republican voters should have been more discerning back in 2014 instead of voting out of GOP tribalism. They could have saved everyone a lot of unnecessary trauma from the antics of Diane Douglas. Republicans should keep this lesson in mind this year.

The Arizona Republic endorses Democratic candidate Kathy Hoffman for Superintendent of Public Instruction. What’s the best quality to help Arizona public schools: Experience or energy?

The race for superintendent of public instruction hinges on the answer to one simple question: Is experience or energy needed more?

The superintendent doesn’t have the power to boost teacher pay or raise taxes to bolster education funding, the two issues driving current education debates. That’s up to the Legislature, the state Board of Education and local school boards.

But this race matters because the winner will oversee the Department of Education – which is basically broken [after the disastrous tenure of Diane Douglas].

There has been heavy turnover during outgoing superintendent Diane Douglas’s tenure. Many experts have left, and morale is in the tank for those who remain. Not surprisingly, this office is no longer producing the helpful training, reliable policy direction and robust student-achievement data that Arizona’s public schools need.

It needs a fixer – someone who can break up the status quo and reinvigorate the department.

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LD 17 Democrats shine in Clean Elections Debate

 

LD 17 Democratic State Senate Nominee Steve Weichert and State House Nominee Jennifer Pawlik

Arizona Local District 17, which includes all or parts of Gilbert, Chandler, and Sun Lakes, is becoming increasingly purple over the last two years. Some pundits and commentators like the organization Flippable, seeing a potential blue wave coming in November, feel that Democratic House Nominee Jennifer Pawlik and Democratic Senate Nominee Steve Weichert have a good chance of defeating their Republican counterparts in the next election.

On Tuesday, October 9, both Ms. Pawlik and Mr. Weichert attended the Clean Elections Debate in the second floor Copper Room of the Chandler Public Library. Republican and current Arizona Speaker of the House JD Mesnard, the Republican nominee for the State Senate seat also attended. The two House Republican candidates competing against Ms. Pawlik did not appear at this event, continuing a pattern across the county of the Party of Lincoln nominees being too busy to engage and discuss their views with the people.

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Jennifer Jermaine Campaigns for an Inclusive Progressive Vision in LD18

Democratic LD 18 State House Candidate Jennifer Jermaine

One of the reasons Democrats are poised to make gains in the State Legislature in 2018 is the recruitment of stellar and compelling candidates to run for the Senate and House. One of these candidates is Legislative District 18 candidate Jennifer Jermaine who is running to replace Republican Incumbent State House Representative Jill Norgaard, a conservative who subscribes to the failed trickle-down theory of economic and social justice policy.

Arizona LD 18 includes all or parts of Tempe, Mesa, Chandler, and Ahwatukee. It is one of several districts that have become increasingly blue. Republicans are no longer the number one political party in the district. Currently, Democrat Mitzi Epstein is the other current State House incumbent from the district and fellow Democrat Sean Bowie is the current State Senator from this area.

Previously profiled for Blog of Arizona along with Representative Epstein, Ms. Jermaine agreed to a follow-up interview where she responded to questions on the issues she was running on and the state of her campaign.

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Elizabeth Brown and Lynsey Robinson battle Depraved Hearts, Corruption and Dark Money Republican Interests in Arizona LD 12

LD 12 Democratic State House Candidate Lynsey Robinson

The sense of entitlement and stench of corruption from Republican representatives in Arizona LD 12 has not lessened since last summer.

Recent news reports and activities at the Arizona State Board for Charter Schools have revealed that LD 12 State Representative Eddie Farnsworth has used his position in the State House to set up a “Banana Republic” system where legislation he has supported or objected to, has enabled him to earn $11 million for the sale of his Ben Franklin chain of charter schools to a 501(c)(3) corporation that will pay Mr. Farnsworth a consulting fee for his services.

LD 12 Democratic State Senate Candidate Elizabeth Brown

Benefiting from one’s position in elected office is very unethical and unseemly. It appears, unfortunately, to be normal operating procedure in the Arizona State Legislature under Republican stewardship as Dark Money special interests dictate what legislation and policies will be considered and what will not. It has come to the point where Democratic Senate candidate Elizabeth Brown contends that Republicans and their Dark Money benefactors “consider it a sin to help others,” “not caring” about those in need while actively promoting corporate welfare schemes and policies to assist businesses. She refers to this behavior as belonging to individuals with “depraved hearts.”

Meeting at the same IHOP as before, both Democratic House candidate Lynsey Robinson and Senate candidate Brown sat down and relayed what their campaign message is for LD 12, a district that includes all or parts of Gilbert, San Tan, and Queen Creek. Their plans, along with the other Democratic candidate Joe Bisaccia whom they have canvassed with, to beat the entrenched ultra-conservative interests of Eddie Farnsworth, Travis Grantham, and Warren Pedersen.

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