Blake Masters: Everyone Is Asking Me Why We Are Sending $40 Billion to Ukraine

Neil W. McCabe, the national political editor of The Star News Network, interviewed the former president of Thiel Capital and Arizona GOP Senate hopeful Blake Masters about what voters are telling him and why he is running to replace Democrat Sen. Mark Kelly.

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U.S. Senate Hopeful Lamon: I Would Not Have Voted to Certify Arizona’s Electors Jan. 6, 2021

Neil W. McCabe, the national political editor of The Star News Network, interviewed Arizona GOP Senate hopeful Jim Lamon after his town hall with supporters in Sun City. Lamon told TSNN he would not have voted to certify Arizona’s electors Jan. 6, 2021.

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‘Federal Government’s Failure’: Democrats Join Forces with Republicans to Reverse Biden’s Migrant Decision

Moderate Senate Democrats joined Senate Republicans on Thursday in an effort to block President Joe Biden from lifting Title 42, a measure enacted during the pandemic that allows for the quick expulsion of migrants.

The bipartisan group of lawmakers proposed legislation that would halt the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from ending the policy, which the agency announced would cease on May 23, without an adequate plan in place.

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Democrat Arizona Secretary of State and Gubernatorial Candidate Katie Hobbs Praises Biden for Removing Title 42 Restrictions at the Border

Katie Hobbs

While many leading Democrats, including both of Arizona’s U.S. Senators, Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema, are upset with the Biden administration’s decision to end the Title 42 COVID-19 restrictions on U.S. borders, Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs praised the decision. The Title 42 order, issued by the Centers for Disease Control in March 2020 under the Trump administration, has been used by Customs and Border Protection to prevent 1.7 million migrants from entering the country. They are either sent back to Mexico or on flights to other countries.

When asked by 3TV about the change and how it would affect border security, Hobbs said, “Title 42 should not be a substitute for that. As governor, I will work to, with the federal government, make sure that Arizonans are secure, they need to put more resources and securing the border. We need more resources to address the influx of migrants coming to the border.” 

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Biden’s Labor Department Nominee Had His Nomination Blocked Thanks to Three Democrats

Three Democratic senators joined Republicans on Wednesday to kill the nomination of David Weil to head the Labor Department’s Wage and Hour Division, Politico reported.

In a final vote of 47-53, the Senate chose not to move forward with considering Weil’s nomination after intense criticism from Republicans over his tenure in the Obama administration, Politico reported. Arizona Sens. Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly, along with West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, were the only Democrats to vote against Weil.

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Senators Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to End U.S. Reliance on Chinese Minerals

Mark Kelly and Tom Cotton

A Republican and Democratic senator introduced legislation Friday that aims to end U.S. reliance on rare-earth metals sourced from and produced in China.

The Restoring Essential Energy and Security Holdings Onshore for Rare Earths (REEShore) Act would prevent supply disruptions and bolster domestic production of the minerals, according to Sens. Tom Cotton and Mark Kelly, the bill’s sponsors. They said the legislation is important for American national security and development of advanced technologies.

“The Chinese Communist Party has a chokehold on global rare-earth element supplies, which are used in everything from batteries to fighter jets,” Cotton said in a statement. “Ending America’s dependence on the CCP for extraction and processing of these elements is critical to winning the strategic competition against China and protecting our national security.”

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Election Handicapper Says Three Major 2022 Senate Races Now a ‘Toss-up,’ a Boon to Republicans

Raphael Warnock

Hotly contested Senate seats in Georgia, Arizona and Nevada are now well within the realm of a “toss-up” in next year’s races, a notable political forecaster is predicting.

The Cook Political Report, a longtime newsletter that specializes in U.S. election predictions, this week moved those races to its toss-up column for the 2022 elections.

In Georgia, Democrat Sen. Raphael Warnock faces re-election after narrowly winning a special election this year. His victory helped tip the Senate in favor of Democrats.

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Arizona State Treasurer Kimberly Yee Sends Letter to Sinema, Kelly Opposing Legislation to Allow IRS to Monitor Americans’ $600 or More Withdrawals and Deposits

Arizona State Treasurer Kimberly Yee sent a letter to Arizona’s Democratic Sens. Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly urging them not to vote for legislation that would allow the IRS to monitor Americans’ bank accounts for transactions of $600 or more in withdrawals and deposits. The proposal is part of the Biden administration’s $3.5 trillion American Families Plan, the so-called “human infrastructure” bill. Scott Earl, the CEO & President of Mountain West Credit Union Association, also signed the letter, representing multiple credit unions. 

Yee, who is running for governor of Arizona, said, “As it stands now, this proposal would threaten the financial security of more than 100 million Americans from all demographics. If it passes, the government will conduct one of the largest data mining exercises in American history, risking the security of the banking system.”

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Arizona Senators Kelly and Sinema Refuse to Address National Archives Labeling Founding Documents ‘Harmful Language’

  The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) placed warning labels on the Constitution, Declaration of Independence, and other historical documents, warning viewers that “some of the materials presented here may reflect outdated, biased, offensive, and possibly violent views and opinions.” The Arizona Sun Times requested comment from Arizona’s Democratic…

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Arizona School Officials Pushing Mask Mandate Caught Not Wearing Masks

Some Arizona school officials are in a feud with Governor Doug Ducey and the Arizona Legislature over implementing mandatory mask policies, but some of those officials have been caught not wearing masks themselves. Arizona Superintendent of Schools Kathy Hoffman, a Democrat, was spotted not wearing one along with others at a baby shower. Not a single person present had a mask on or was social distancing. Amphitheater Public Schools, which mandated masks on August 16, posted a photo of their Communications Director Michelle Valenzuela, posing without a mask on, clearly standing within a couple of feet of the photographer. They deleted the tweet.

Ducey is confident the school mask mandates will not hold up in court. He said earlier in August, “COVID has been with us for well over a year and a half now, and Arizonans are educated about it. If they want to wear masks, they should absolutely do so. It’s an individual choice. No one and no law anywhere in Arizona is stopping anyone from wearing masks. Ultimately, these mandates are toothless, unenforceable and will not hold up in court.”

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All Seven of Arizona’s Democratic Members of Congress Push for Earmarks, Republicans Don’t

Now that a 10-year ban on Congressional earmarks has ended, all seven Democrats in Arizona’s congressional delegation are requesting them. None of the four Republican members are. Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ-07) wants to beautify light poles and several of the members want to expand public transit. Many of them are getting their requests approved as part of the $2.1 trillion infrastructure bill, which is expected to pass into law soon.

Rep. David Schweikert (R-AZ-06) told The Arizona Sun Times Friday that the earmarks aren’t necessary, since they are for the types of projects local and state governments generally cover.

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Arizona Legislator Wendy Rogers Launches Petition to Decertify Election Results Due to Ballot Audit

Arizona Sen. Wendy Rogers (R-Prescott) launched a petition recently demanding the decertification of the 2020 election results in Arizona, based on preliminary results from the ballot audit in Maricopa County ordered by the Arizona state senate. The audit is looking at both the presidential race and the U.S. senate race, where Democrat Mark Kelly defeated incumbent Republican Martha McSally by a small margin. According to a tweet Friday evening from Rogers, the petition was at 36,302 signatures despite server issues forcing the site offline periodically. She is aiming for one million signatures.

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Arizona’s U.S. Senator Mark Kelly Proposes Legislation to Fund Local Mainstream Media

Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ) joined U.S. Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) to co-sponsor legislation that indirectly funds local media. The Local Journalism Sustainability Act establishes tax credits that give consumers a huge deduction on media subscriptions, subsidizes journalists’ salaries, and funds news outlets by paying for businesses to advertise.

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Maricopa County Official Known for ‘Sharpiegate’ Donated to Democrat Mark Kelly’s U.S. Senate Campaign

Kelly Dixon, assistant director for the Maricopa County Election Department’s recruitment and training division, who admitted she knew there were “issues and concerns” with voters marking ballots with Sharpies, donated to Senator Mark Kelly (D-AZ). She earmarked a $100 contribution to him through a donation she gave to the Democratic campaign fundraising organization ActBlue, Headline USA reported on Monday. 

Maricopa County voters complained about poll workers handing them Sharpies on election day that bled through the ballots. Dixon knew ahead of election day that using sharpies to mark a ballot was an issue. In an email dated October 22, she wrote “Starting tomorrow, 10/23, and through 11/2, we are asking the Clerks hand voters BALLPOINT PENS rather than markers.” However, she then said “We NEED to use markers on Election Day.” She did not explain why. Republicans voted on election day in huge numbers last year, driven by fears of voter fraud. A Gallup survey found that 62% of Democrats said they would vote early last fall, compared to only 28% of Republicans. 

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Arizona Attorney General Brnovich Leads Challenge at SCOTUS Related to Hobbs

Mark Brnovich

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich filed an amicus curiae brief Monday in the U.S. Supreme Court with 22 states signing on, demanding the court overrule a decision by the Sixth Circuit allowing state officials to surrender in lawsuits challenging state laws they don’t want to defend.  The move comes as Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, a Democrat, is refusing to appeal adverse decisions striking down Arizona’s elections laws.

The brief relates to Kentucky v. EMW Women’s Surgical Center, where Democratic Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear failed to appeal a court decision striking down a Kentucky law banning dismemberment abortions during the second trimester of pregnancy. Kentucky’s Republican Attorney General Daniel Cameron is trying to intervene in order to defend the law.

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Status Update: The Maricopa County Ballot Audit

The ballot audit in Maricopa County is winding down, and as details leak out from the counting and analysis, it is becoming clear what many of the problems are that will need addressing. Some could be honest mistakes, such as voters marking their ballots incorrectly, but others could be far more serious.

Arizona Senate President Karen Fann (R-Prescott) listed off several discrepancies in a letter to the Maricopa County Supervisors on May 12, such as different numbers of ballots in the boxes than the numbers listed on the pink sheets inside the boxes. She cited several examples, including one box that contained an alarming 35 fewer ballots than the number on the pink slip.

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Arizona Attorney General Launches Campaign for Senate

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced on Thursday his intentions to run to represent the Grand Canyon State in the U.S. Senate.

In a video announcing his candidacy, Brnovich said, “We entrust our elected leaders to protect our freedom and they’ve failed us. Today, Arizonans lack confidence in the state of the world, the safety of their communities, their vote, their personal freedoms, and definitely in our representatives in Washington. What we have is a real vacuum of leadership.”

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