Fresh on the heels of the big GOP win in Virginia, Arizona’s Republican legislators are eager to stop dropping bills for the 2022 legislative session. They begin filling them on November 15. Here are a handful of bills some of them will be sponsoring.
Rep. Jake Hoffman (R-Queen Creek) told The Arizona Sun Times he has over a dozen election integrity bills he plans to introduce. In addition to those, he will be dropping three other bills. “Heading into the 2022 legislative session, election integrity continues to be not only the civil rights issue of our day but also the most important legislative issue facing our nation,” he said. “In Arizona you can expect to see dozens of smart, common sense reforms that will ensure voter confidence for generations to come and greatly improve the overall security of Arizona elections.”
One of his other bills creates a whistleblower bounty system for students who expose violations of state law occurring in publicly funded classrooms. He explained how COVID-19 has created a need for this. “Unfortunately throughout COVID, Arizona, like the rest of America, has seen a concerning trend away from transparency emerge amongst our publicly funded government schools, he told The Sun Times.
“District administrators and teachers unions have repeatedly attempted to stomp out parents’ right to be informed about and control their children’s educational experience. From Critical Race Theory to adult-on-student classroom intimidation and bullying for merely expressing an alternate opinion, it’s far past due for us as a society to empower students to report illegal behavior occurring in our publicly funded classrooms.”
A second bill of Hoffman’s requires divestment of state resources from any stocks, mutual funds, pension investment plans, etc. that donate to, or otherwise invest in, organizations that promote or advocate for abortions by minors or the inclusion of sexually explicit material (written, visual, audible or otherwise) in K-12 schools.
Arizona already has a law that prohibits investment of state funds in corporations that boycott Israel. Hoffman explained to The Sun Times why he would broaden it, “Arizonans overwhelmingly support protecting the lives of the most vulnerable in our communities. There is no conceivable reason why taxpayer resources should be spent propping up the stocks of mega corporations and Wall Street hedge funds who actively undermine Arizonans right to life by turning around and donating to organizations that promote abortions in minor, teen girls or the inclusion of sexually explicit material in our kindergarten through high school classrooms. It’s time to put an end to this abuse of taxpayer resources.”
A third bill of Hoffman’s would ban products made with forced labor from being sold in Arizona. “Communist China is the greatest threat facing the globe and it is both tragic and unfortunate that Democrats, along with their multi-billion dollar global corporatist cronies have prioritized profits and cheap goods over human dignity,” he said. “Enough is enough,” he said. “America has a storied history standing up for human rights and we must unwaveringly stand up for them once again. Arizona doesn’t care how many failed NFL quarterbacks you hire as spokesmen or how many fake news outlets you own, there is simply no reason that we should allow a single product made with forced or slave labor to be sold in our state.”
Rep. Leo Biasiucci (R-Lake Havasu) intends to focus on a bill that will stop vaccine mandates. He told The Sun Times that he has received phone calls from military personnel, nurses, utility workers, etc. who are all being told to get vaccinated or be fired. “This is not communist China,” he said. “It’s a disgrace that this administration is ready to allow millions of Americans to lose their jobs. We are going to do what we can to stop that here in Arizona and show people that they can come here because we will protect them.”
He also intends to run a bill that will fund protection on the Arizona border, “especially hiring more local law enforcement since Biden is refusing to send us help.” He lamented, “We are witnessing a surge like never before and it’s time we take matters into our own hands as a state.”
Rep. John Fillmore (R-Mesa) intends to bring back HB 2060, which makes the Pledge of Allegiance mandatory for K-5 in public schools. He also wants to revive HB 2062, which creates an apprenticeship program for students who don’t intend to go to college. He also intends to focus on stopping vaccine mandates, bringing back HB 2065. Two more bills he will be presenting include one clarifying that there are two genders and one that eliminates online voter registration, requiring people to register in person and show an ID.
Rep. Steve Kaiser (R-Phoenix) said he is “very excited” to address some workers comp issues that will “provide clarity to small business owners as well as help protect workers.” He’s also going to introduce legislation “making school boards more accountable to parents and students through additional transparency and accountability measures.” Additionally, he plans to focus on
adult education, noting that Arizona has over 700,000 adults without a high school diploma. He told The Times, “The ROI for diplomas is immediate and profound for both the individual and the state of Arizona.”
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Background Photo “Arizona State Capitol State Senate Building” by Adavyd. CC 3.0.