Maricopa County Democratic Party Chair Steven Slugocki
The 2018 Midterm elections were good for the Democrats in Arizona, especially if you were a woman in a state or citywide race whose first or last name began with a “K.” With the final results now determined, Kyrsten Sinema (United States Senate), Katie Hobbs (Secretary of State), Kathy Hoffman (Superintendent of Public Instruction), and Sandra Kennedy (Corporation Commission) emerged victorious in their statewide races. With a first-place showing in the initial round of the Phoenix Mayoral Race, Kate Gallego seems well positioned to win the runoff election in March over Daniel Valenzuela. Democrats also gained four seats in the Arizona State House making that chamber the closest between the two parties since 1966. Many Democrats also performed well in races for local school boards, judgeships, justice of the peace, and local constables.
Maricopa County Democratic Party Chair Steve Slugocki, in the middle of preparing for the annual reorganization elections for the county party, offered his perspective on the 2018 election results and where the party will go from here. The questions and responses are below:
Posted in Activism, Arizona Congressional Delegation, Arizona Congressional Races, Arizona State Legislature, Campaigns, Commentary, Community, David Gordon, Editorial, Legislation, Maricopa, Party Politics, Political Calendar, Political Events, Senate
Tagged Aaron Lieberman, Anita Malik, Daniel Valenzuela, David Garcia, David Schipara, Dr. Hiral Tipirneni, January Contreras, jennifer jermaine, Jennifer Pawlik, Joan Greene, kate gallego, Kathy Hoffman, katie hobbs, Kyrsten Sinema, mitzi epstein, sandra kennedy, sean bowie, Senator Steve Farley, Steve Slugocki
Any of the three Democratic candidates — Kelly Fryer, David Garcia and Steve Farley — can beat Doug Ducey in the race for governor.
Most people familiar with moral fairy tales are well versed with the Three Little Pigs fable. In it, the wolf is able to blow down two of the pigs’ houses because they are made of either straw or sticks but is unable to wreck the third one because it is made of bricks.
Apply this tale to conditions in Arizona after three and a half years of Doug Ducey and people will find that the foundations of his house are built on straw and sticks rather than bricks. It would only take a strong problem-solving progressive Democrat one puff to blow this house down and build a new foundation that will better address Arizona’s needs.
Doug Ducey’s Arizona
In Doug Ducey’s Arizona, the state ranks:
- 33rd overall in the list of best-managed states, according to USA Today. In the Southwest region, only New Mexico ranked worse.
- 39th overall, according to U.S. News and World report, as the best state in the country. Within that ranking, Arizona received sub-rankings in several areas. These include being ranked:
- 43rd in Education
- 24th in Health Care
- 45th in Providing Opportunity
- 38th in Crimes and Corrections
- 34th in Fiscal Stability
- 39th in Quality of Life
- 41st in Safety on a separate report.
Posted in Arizona State Legislature, Ballot Referendas and Initiatives, Budgets, Campaigns, Charter Schools, Civil Rights, Commentary, Community, Corruption, Counties, Courts, Crime, David Gordon, Drug Policy, Economics, Editorial, Education, Elections, Energy, environment, Ethics, Gender Equality, Governor, Gun Policies, Healthcare, Immigration, Infrastructure, Justice, Labor, Law Enforcement, Legislation, Maricopa, Party Politics, Pima, Political Calendar, Political Events, Polling, Poverty, Primaries, Propositions, Racism, Taxes, Transportation, Tucson, Water
Tagged Doug Ducey, Dr. David Garcia, Kelly Fryer, Senator Steve Farley
The Grand Canyon Institute reports that a $2 billion increase in Arizona’s annual funding of K-12 public education is needed to improve high school graduation rates, improve math and reading levels, and raise the number of Arizonans who have a 2- or 4-year degree.
“Arizona has run an austerity budget since the Great Recession,” said Dave Wells, the Institute’s research director. “Achieving the Arizona Education Progress Meter’s goals by 2030 requires new and dedicated funding source There are not sufficient funds from economic growth or potential fund sweeps or savings from other government services to meet these needs.”
The Grand Canyon Institute (GCI), an independent, nonpartisan think tank, conducted its analysis based on educational goals defined in the Arizona Education Progress Meter. The goals were established by Expect More Arizona and The Center for the Future of Arizona.
The $2.1 billion annual increase in public education funding identified by GCI’s research includes investments in:
- Early Childhood Education — $200 million to meet the needs of children under the poverty line to improve their success in school
- Teacher Salaries — $686 million to provide a $10,000 flat raise to Arizona’s teachers to address what may be the worst teacher shortage in the country and maximize the recruitment and retention of young teaching professionals
- Added Interventions—$250 million to achieve goals for third grade reaching, eighth-grade math and high school graduation
- Refilling prior state investments: $991.million:
- District Additional Assistance: $352 million
- All-day Kindergarten: $265 million
- New School Construction: $284 million
- Building Renewal Funds: $90 million
Arizona Education Progress Meter