Blogislature

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Gov. Ducey Signs Bill for MMIWG Study Into Law

Posted By on Tue, May 14, 2019 at 2:23 PM

Tribal members and supporters of H.B. 2570 celebrate its passage in the Arizona House of Representatives. - COURTESY INDIVISIBLE TOHONO
  • Courtesy Indivisible Tohono
  • Tribal members and supporters of H.B. 2570 celebrate its passage in the Arizona House of Representatives.

Gov. Doug Ducey has signed House Bill 2570 into law, creating the first state-sponsored study to gather comprehensive data on missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Arizona and identify causes of the systemic violence.

These cases, known as MMIWG cases, have historically received limited attention and improper classification. The only national study devoted to the subject—which was published by the Urban Indian Health Institute in Seattle last year—acknowledges that even their data for the number of Indigenous women and girls who have gone missing or have been murdered is likely an undercount.

They reported that in 2016, there were 5,712 reports of missing American Indian and Alaska Native women and girls, though the U.S. Department of Justice's federal missing persons database, NamUs, only logged 116 cases. Arizona was ranked the third most dangerous state for Indigenous women with 54 cases, and Tucson was the fourth most dangerous city in the country with 30 recorded murders.

Activists have pointed to a lack of collaboration between local, state and tribal law enforcement officials and the misclassification of victims' ethnicity and tribal affiliations as the reason for the lack of accurate data.

The new law, introduced by Democratic Rep. Jennifer Jermaine, allows a study committee to be formed, with representation from seven Arizona tribes. The committee will include all members of the Indigenous Peoples Caucus, the Arizona attorney general or their designee, the director of the Department of Public Safety or their designee, attorneys and sheriffs from urban and rural counties, representatives from tribal government and law enforcement, victims advocates, social workers, counselors and legal and health service experts.

Once the study is completed in June 2020, the findings will be presented to tribal leadership and the state legislature. This could provide a framework for better policies to be enacted that would protect Indigenous women from targeted violence.

Gov. Ducey posted a tweet celebrating the passage of the bill this morning:

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Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Former Arizona Senator Jon Kyl to Replace McCain

Posted By on Tue, Sep 4, 2018 at 11:14 AM

Former U.S. Senator Jon Kyl is appointed to fill John McCain's seat. - GAGE SKIDMORE
  • Gage Skidmore
  • Former U.S. Senator Jon Kyl is appointed to fill John McCain's seat.
Gov. Doug Ducey named former U.S. senator Jon Kyl to succeed the late Sen. John McCain.

Kyl said at a press conference that he would serve until the 2020 special election and not seek re-election.

There were rumors Ducey might appoint Cindy McCain to take the late senator's place. But Cindy McCain tweeted Tuesday morning that Kyl is a dear friend and it's a tribute to her husband that Kyl is "prepared to go back into public service to help the state of Arizona."

Kyl served with McCain as one of Arizona's U.S. senators from 1995 to 2013 and was Minority Whip starting in 2007. Before being elected to the Senate, he served in the House of Representatives.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate David Garcia said in a statement that he would have appointed someone with "a history of independence and bipartisanship," such as Cindy McCain or former Arizona attorney general Grant Woods.


“Jon Kyl has served as Brett Kavanaugh’s 'sherpa' through the nomination process and will undoubtedly vote for his confirmation, which puts many rights we take for granted at risk, chief among them are women’s reproductive rights, civil rights, voting rights, environmental rights and workers rights," Garcia said.


Kly has been leading Kavanaugh, Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, through the confirmation process, which started today.

Kyl could be sworn in on Tuesday or Wednesday.

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Tuesday, August 28, 2018

LD 9 Newcomer JP Martin Loses to Incumbents in State House Race

Posted By on Tue, Aug 28, 2018 at 10:26 PM

Incumbents Pamela Powers Hannley and Randy Friese go to the general in the LD 10 House. - SAVANAH MODESITT
  • Savanah Modesitt
  • Incumbents Pamela Powers Hannley and Randy Friese go to the general in the LD 10 House.

Incumbents Pamela Powers Hannley and Randy Friese took the stage at the Pima County Democratic election party. They easily won over newcomer JP Martin, who got about 12 percent of the vote. Powers Hannley and Friese split the rest of the votes almost equally, with Freise getting a few percentage points more.

Freise said he's honored but reminded the excited crowd that they still have the general ahead of them.

"I’m ready for the work with all of your help,” he said.


In the general, they will face Republican Ana Henderson.

"We are going to beat Henderson," Powers Hannley said. "We beat her before, and we will beat her again.”

Interns Savanah Modesitt and Daniel Young-Miller contributed to this post.


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Kirsten Engel One of the Winners in LD 10 Dem Primary

Posted By on Tue, Aug 28, 2018 at 10:10 PM

Incumbent Kirsten Engel keeps her seat in LD 10 - DANYELLE KHMARA
  • Danyelle Khmara
  • Incumbent Kirsten Engel keeps her seat in LD 10

Kirsten Engel gave her acceptance speech for the LD 10 Democratic House primary. She was one of four candidates, and as of Tuesday night has about 40 percent of the vote. Her opponents each have around 20 percent, so it's still too close to know who will go with her to the general to run against Republican Todd Clodfelter.

But she said she doesn't see the others as opponents, a sentiment echoed by each each of them.

“We are going to work for our kids, teachers, schools, environment and an economy that works for everyone," she said. "We fought against a soon to be minority Republican party that is bankrupt, backward and brutal.”

Tucson Weekly interns Daniel Young-Miller and Savanah Modesitt contributed to this post.

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David Garcia Declared Winner in the Arizona Democratic Governor's Race

Posted By on Tue, Aug 28, 2018 at 9:49 PM

David Garcia - COURTESY
  • Courtesy
  • David Garcia
David Garcia was announced winner in the Democratic primary gubernatorial race. Tucson Unified School District Boardmember Kristel Ann Foster spoke on his behalf at the Pima County Democrats election party.

She said he thanks his two opponents, Steve Farley and Kelly Fryer, for

raising important issues and making him a better candidate.



“And we can’t do this without them, and we can’t do this without you,” she said. "Arizona has declared that it's ready for vision over division."




Ann Kirkpatrick Gives Acceptance Speech with Comfortable Lead

Posted By on Tue, Aug 28, 2018 at 9:20 PM

Ann Kirkpatrick takes the stage at the Pima County Democrats election event, with a comfortable lead over her opponents in the CD 2 Democratic primary - SAVANAH MODESITT
  • Savanah Modesitt
  • Ann Kirkpatrick takes the stage at the Pima County Democrats election event, with a comfortable lead over her opponents in the CD 2 Democratic primary

Ann Kirkpatrick is in the lead for Congressional District 2, beating out six other candidates. She took the stage at the Pima County Democrats election event to say she's ready for the general.

"We won this campaign because we were out there talking to people about a Washington D.C. that has completely gone off the rails."

She said she credits her hundreds of volunteers and great team for her pending win.

"We had energy from so many groups, especially women who met monthly, marched and made phone calls," she said. "We also had 35 young student volunteers. Two of them couldn’t even vote.”

Tucson Weekly intern Daniel Young-Miller contributed to this post.


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Steve Farley Calls for Unity

Posted By on Tue, Aug 28, 2018 at 8:16 PM

Gubernatorial candidate Steve Farley calls for unity as one of his primary opponents Kelly Fryer takes the stage with him. - DANYELLE KHMARA
  • Danyelle Khmara
  • Gubernatorial candidate Steve Farley calls for unity as one of his primary opponents Kelly Fryer takes the stage with him.

An hour before the numbers started to come in for the governor's race, Steve Farley said he’s proud of all the work his volunteers did with his campaign, truly showing the voters who he is as a candidate. He says hundred of teachers joined his campaign after they saw him on the House floor, pushing for an increase to education funding during the Red for Ed teacher walkouts.


He said he’s shown he can win elections, with his numerous terms in the Arizona Legislature, and that experience has prepared him to be governor, and he can solve the problems caused by Doug Ducey’s governorship.


He took the stage at the Pima County Democratic Party’s election event and asked his opponent Kelly Fryer to join him the stage.


“Let’s go out and change this together, no matter who wins tonight,” he said


Thursday, August 23, 2018

New York State Senate Candidate Supports Sex Worker Rights

Posted By on Thu, Aug 23, 2018 at 12:11 PM

New York state Senate candidate Julia Salazar - COURTESY PHOTO
  • courtesy photo
  • New York state Senate candidate Julia Salazar
Supporting human rights seems like a no brainer, but for sex workers that has, unfortunately, not been the case. Even Bernie Sanders voted for SESTA-FOSTA, the so-called anti-trafficking law passed earlier this year that shut down Backpage.com and other sites where sex workers could post ads and vet potential clients in a way that was safer and more empowering.

But just as laws that hurt sex workers become more extreme, people are throwing more support behind political candidates who openly oppose such laws, support sex worker rights and even call for complete decriminalization of the industry.

A state Senate candidate in New York is doing just that. Twenty-seven-year-old Julia Salazar, who heads into a Sept. 13 primary against an eight-term incumbent, has attended sex worker advocacy meetings and even has a decriminalization platform on her website.

The Intercept goes deeper into Salazar's advocacy as well as looking at some of the other political candidates standing up for the human rights of sex workers.
Salazar’s platform outlines steps toward decriminalization that include
an end to raids on massage parlors; working with district attorneys to
stop charging sex workers with crimes; and creating a network of
optional social services to address workers’ needs, such as housing,
child care, syringe access, and job training. Her platform would also
make it easier for sex workers with criminal records to access housing
and jobs, along with repealing the exemption for sex workers under New
York’s rape shield law.

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