Monday, March 18, 2019

ODD: Arizona the Face of "Red America" in This Congressman's Post About "Another" Armed Civil War (ARIZONA'S POLITICAL SHORTS)

ODD: Arizona the Face of "Red America" in This Congressman's Post About "Another" Armed Civil War
10:30am: Arizona is the face of "Red America" in Congressman Steve King's (R-IA) weekend Facebook post about "another" armed civil war. While it is no doubt a re-posting of a meme he or his campaign staff found elsewhere, King added the smirky comment "Wonder who would win....😏"
King's campaign Facebook account is quite active in re-posting memes such as this, but he deleted this civil war post after it began to receive wider attention. King was cited by name in a Congressional resolution passed in January rejecting White nationalism and White supremacy; he voted for the resolution, which was approved 424-1.

Arizona is the face of "Red America" in this meme. However, it is more likely because the size and the shape of the Grand Canyon State fit the bill than that the political makeup or the number of bullets earned us that high profile position. (Although it does look like we are about to have a very red bloody nose.😏 We need to get our guard up.)

OFF-TOPIC: Join our Diamondbacks Season Ticket Group
9:00am: We've been part of a Diamondbacks season ticket group for 20 years now, and a couple of our members had life changes that prompted them to stop participating. We have two seats that are probably the best value in the ballpark. One share is 16 games over the 6-month season, and although we assign the games randomly, everyone is usually pretty accomodating for switches. If you are interested, email me, at Paul @ ArizonasPolitics.com (no spaces), and I'll send you more details.

OFF-TOPIC: Join our Powerball lottery pool
9:00am: With the Powerball lottery jackpot climbing, we usually fire up our office lottery pool. The more, the merrier is what we always say about a pool party, so we are inviting you to join us. $10/share, and we'll split our winnings pro rata. If you're interested, send us an email today or tomorrow at Paul @ ArizonasPolitics.com (no spaces), and we'll send you the details.

If you would like to show your appreciation for Arizona's Politics reporting, please consider donating to our pool to support OTHER journalism-related nonprofits.  

We welcome your comments about this post. Or, if you have something unrelated on your mind, please e-mail to info-at-arizonaspolitics-dot-com or call 602-799-7025. Thanks.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

ARIZONA'S POLITICAL SHORTS: Senate To Next Vote On Arizona Magistrate Bridget Bade For 9th Circuit Judgeship On 25th

Senate To Next Vote On Arizona Magistrate Bridget Bade For 9th Circuit Judgeship On 25th
3:45pm: The Senate Clerk confirmed this afternoon that the next judicial appointment it will vote on will be Arizona's Hon. Bridget Bade, for a position on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The vote on the cloture motion will be at 2:30pm AZT on Monday, March 25. Given the bipartisan 17-5 vote in the Judiciary Committee to approve her nomination, there is no reason for the Republican-controlled Senate to not invoke cloture, in which case the final vote confirming her appointment will likely be the next day.

Arizona's Politics reported on the process that led to her nomination here.

Her application for the position can be found here.

Video of her hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee can be found here.

Other Arizona nominations pending are Mike Liburdi for a U.S. District Court Judge, and Mike Bailey for the U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona.

Senate Moves Forward To Vote On Arizona Magistrate Bridget Bade For 9th Circuit Judgeship
12:15pm: The U.S. Senate is moving forward on the appointment of Arizona's Hon. Bridget Bade to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell this afternoon filed for cloture on her nomination.

As Arizona's Poltiics has been reporting, Bade - who is currently a U.S. Magistrate Judge in Phoenix - is one of those all-too-infrequent judicial nominations that has received broad, bipartisan support.* (17-5 approval in Senate Judiciary Committee.)

It is not clear when exactly the Senate will vote on cloture and on the nomination, but - given recent practice - it should be within the next few business days. (Update: Senate will not be conducting business next week - hello, Spring Break! - so, March 25 may be the day they take it up. h/t to John Doe @fedjudges)

(Disclosure: Arizona's Politics' co-founder Paul Weich has known and been friendly with Bade on and off since law school.)

Congress Voted 420-0 To Say Mueller Report Should Be Public; Gosar Votes "Present"
11:45am: The U.S. House of Representatives voted 420-0 today that the (eventual) report of Special Counsel Robert Mueller should be made available to Congress and the public. Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar (R-CD4) voted "present".

We have not yet seen a statement from Rep. Gosar regarding his "present" vote.

Here is the text of H.Con.Res.24: 







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WATCH McSally: "I Am Fully Locked In Like A Missile On This Target" - Sexual Assaults In the Military

Arizona Senator Martha McSally (R-AZ) made the most of her 5 minutes questioning acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan this morning. You can watch the full video below.

First, she got him to affirm in public that he had assured her that Arizona military funding would not be impacted by President Trump's border wall emergency declaration, just ahead of the Senate's vote to disapprove the declaration. She had previously indicated reassurances from the Pentagon and the White House, but Arizona's Politics (and others) had asked whether they were written or verbal assurances.

Next, she stated that "I am fully locked in like a missile on this target", with the target being the problem of sexual assaults in the military. McSally made national headlines last week when she testified that she had been raped by a superior officer during her service in the USAF. She indicated she's been thinking about the subject a lot and "moreso over the past week", and she prompted Shanahan to commit to partnering with her and "we are going to take a fresh look and tackle this over the next 45 days."

"Can I get your commitment you'll work with me on that?" Shanahan's (only possible) response: "Senator, you have my commitment." General Joseph Dunford, the Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, answered affirmatively, as well.

McSally also noted that she is setting up a summit on the issue with the Secretary of the Air Force and leaders in that branch. (Heather Wilson is retiring at the end of May.)

Finally, Senator McSally prompted the Secretary to answer that ceasing joint exercises with South Korea's military will not harm the readiness of the forces on the peninsula in case of future conflict with North Korea. President Trump ordered the annual exercises to end, as part of his summit(s) with North Korea's Kim Jong Un.



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Wednesday, March 13, 2019

BREAKING: Arizona Senators Split On Vote To Pass Resolution To Yank U.S. Forces From Yemen Conflict Within 30 Days (READ)

Arizona Senators Kyrsten Sinema (D) and Martha McSally (R) split their votes tonight on a
controversial resolution ordering President Trump to remove all U.S. military from the conflict in Yemen within 30 days. Sinema joined all Democrats and seven Republicans voted for the resolution, and it passed by a vote of 54-46. McSally was among the nay votes.

The measure is the second time this year that the Senate has rebuked President Trump for continuing to work with Saudi Arabia in the civil war, and invokes the War Powers Resolution.

The Resolution was proposed by Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Mike Lee (R-UT) and Chris Murphy (D-CT). Here is the text of the Resolution:
The measure heads to the House, and the White House has threatened to veto it if given the chance.










Here is the text of the resolution:






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ARIZONA'S POLITICAL SHORTS: Sinema Walks the Line: 1 of 2 Dems To Cross Aisle On Nomination Today, Votes With Party Against Judges

4:30pm: Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema continues to cross the aisle on votes, today joining Joe Manchin and all Republicans in voting for President Trump's nominee for the Commissioner for Labor Statistics (William Beach). At the same time, she toed the party line on two judicial nominations this week (Neomi Rao and Paul Matey for appellate appointments).


Beach's nomination was approved 55-44, so her vote was not a deciding one. However, Sinema - who campaigned last year without affixing her Democratic label to advertising - continues to vote with the GOP majority when she feels it is warranted.

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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

"That's a Certainty!" Governor's Support For Protecting Arizonans With Pre-Existing Conditions Disappears With Bill Signing

"Health insurance companies should cover people with pre-existing conditions. That's a certainty!"

That was Arizona Governor Doug Ducey's no-mincing-words statement in the weeks leading up to his re-election last fall.

Yesterday, the Governor signed into law SB1109, erasing the pre-election certainty. Now, short term health insurance policies will be offered to some Arizonans which contain this warning:
NOTICE

THIS COVERAGE IS NOT REQUIRED TO COMPLY WITH CERTAIN FEDERAL
MARKET REQUIREMENTS FOR HEALTH INSURANCE, PRINCIPALLY THOSE
CONTAINED IN THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT. BE SURE TO CHECK YOUR
POLICY CAREFULLY TO MAKE SURE YOU ARE AWARE OF ANY EXCLUSIONS
OR LIMITATIONS REGARDING COVERAGE OF PREEXISTING CONDITIONS OR 
HEALTH BENEFITS (SUCH AS HOSPITALIZATION, EMERGENCY SERVICES,
MATERNITY CARE, PREVENTIVE CARE, PRESCRIPTION DRUGS AND MENTAL
HEALTH AND SUBSTANCE USE DISORDER SERVICES). YOUR POLICY
MIGHT ALSO HAVE LIFETIME OR ANNUAL DOLLAR LIMITS ON HEALTH
BENEFITS, OR BOTH. IF THIS COVERAGE EXPIRES OR YOU LOSE
ELIGIBILITY FOR THIS COVERAGE, YOU MIGHT HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL AN
OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD TO GET OTHER HEALTH INSURANCE COVERAGE. 

That measure passed the Senate, 18-12 and passed the House last week, 31-28.

Steve Farley, who ran unsuccessfully for Governor last year, stated today that it is "unbelievable" that this measure (below) became law. "This is not acceptable, and is a direct result of Trump's unilateral action hurting our healthcare. These plans are simply junk insurance that takes advantage of those who need coverage the most."

The Governor's office has not made any statements relating to signing the bill on either its website or social media. Arizona's Politics has asked for a response and will update this article as necessary.







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Monday, March 11, 2019

UPDATE: Arizona's Path To U.S. Supreme Court To Sue California For Stealing Tax Revenues

Last week, Arizona's Politics broke the news that Arizona is suing California in the U.S. Supreme Court to end the Golden State's (allegedly) unconstitutional taxing of Arizona LLCs.

Although California has not yet responded - either to our questions or to the AZ Attorney General's suit in the Supreme Court - we have heard back from AG Brnovich's office. Here are some highligts:

(1) California was given a courtesy heads-up before last week's filing;

(2) The AGs office did not discuss this or coordinate this suit with Governor Ducey's office. Not that that was necessary, even though the Governor has also been known for verbally going after Arizona's neighbor to the west... and Ducey's gubernatorial counterparts; and


(3) the AGs office has discussed the issue with other states and expects to get some support for its position that California's unconstitutionally taxing across state lines.

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Thursday, March 7, 2019

READ/WATCH: After Bipartisan Teeth-Gnashing and Hand-Wringing, House Passes Anti-Anti-Hatred Resolution; Rep. Biggs Among Republicans Mocking Dems

Update, 3/8 10am: In addition to Rep. Biggs, Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar was among the 23 nay votes. Here is his explanation: "Without naming the offender, the chastisement is an empty gesture. I voted “no” to the watered down resolution. It’s time for Democrats to take real action against these anti -Jewish remarks."

After much bipartisan teeth-gnashing and hand-wringing, the U.S. House overwhelmingly passed a resolution condemning hatred of many kinds, 407-23. The resolution was initially intended as a rebuke to freshman lawmaker Ilhan Omar's (D-MN) recent remarks using the word "allegiance" to a foreign country in complaining about pro-Israel bias in the House.

Democrats have spent the past several days debating among themselves how to rebuke Omar for again playing to an anti-Semitic trope without alienating Democrats who believed that she is speaking truth to power.

Today, it was a chance on the House Floor for Republicans to mock the Democrats' efforts, and they gleefully - while seriously condemning anti-Semitism in the Democrats' ranks - took to the task. Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs (R-CD5) mocked it and voted against it.

Here is the final version of HR183.

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