AZ joins states fighting Obama bathroom directives

May 26, 2016

Obama’s transgender bathroom mandate meets with resistance

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich and state Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas have announced that they have joined ten other states in a federal lawsuit to challenge Barack Obama’s mandate requiring all public K-12 schools to open up boys’ and girls’ locker rooms and restrooms to students of the opposite sex, based on student perceptions of their “gender identity.”

Since the President has threatened to deny federal funding to all schools that object to this outrageous decree,  Arizona has joined Texas, Alabama, Louisiana, Maine, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah, Georgia, West Virginia and Wisconsin in a lawsuit filed in the United States Court for the Northern District of Texas. The lawsuit is focused on who should set these sensitive policies —- the federal government via executive order or states and local school districts. The challenge seeks declaratory relief against a number of federal agencies in order to block the implementation of the administration’s unconstitutional interpretation of the law. The Heber-Overgaard Unified School District has also joined the state’s lawsuit as a plaintiff.

The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas in response the Obama administration’s issuance of a broad directive advising every public school district in the country they must allow transgender students to use the bathrooms that match their gender identity rather than their biological sex.

The implicit threat is that schools that do not abide by the Obama administration’s interpretation of the law could face lawsuits or a loss of federal aid.

Read the formal filing of the complaint which states in part these truths regarding the overt attempts at social engineering by the radically left-wing lame duck president:

“Defendants have conspired to turn workplaces and educational settings across the country into laboratories for a massive social experiment, flouting the democratic process, and running roughshod over commonsense policies protecting children and basic privacy rights. Defendants’ rewriting of Title VII and Title IX is wholly incompatible with Congressional text. Absent action in Congress, the States, or local communities, Defendants cannot foist these radical changes on the nation.”


Ducey expands AZ Supreme Court in costly move

May 19, 2016

With the issuance of this letter, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey formally announces his signing of House Bill 2537, which expands the state Supreme Court from five justices to seven. Ducey assures that this action is not “court packing” and goes to great lengths to disabuse any notion that this action is a judicial power grab. He says implementation of the $1 million + plan is necessary to ensure “swift justice,” although Chief Justice Scott Bales contends the additional judges are not needed and expansion “is not warranted when other court-related needs are under funded.” Earlier this month Bales asked the governor to veto the legislation.

“Arizonans deserve swift justice from the judicial branch,” Ducey’s letter states. “Adding more voices will ensure that the court can increase efficiency, hear more cases and issue more opinions.”

In January, Ducey appointed Clint Bolick, a registered Independent and Goldwater Institute lawyer, to the high court.

Judicial appointments are among a governor’s most significant decisions, since jurists long tenures far exceed the term(s) of the appointing governor. Judge’s decisions impact issues ranging from the death penalty to issues of constitutionality. All death penalty cases are automatically reviewed by the Supreme Court. 

In the letter explaining his signing Wednesday morning, Ducey said the additional justices will put Arizona on par with states that have similar or smaller populations yet more Supreme Court justices. 

Ducey’s letter explained,  “Adding more voices will ensure that the court can increase efficiency, hear more cases and issue more opinions.”

Rep. J.D. Mesnard, (R-LD 17) who sponsored the bill is quoted as saying the expansion will result in a “greater opportunity for diversity on the court,…including diversity of opinion.”

The list from which Ducey selected currently registered Independent Clint Bolick to the Supreme Court, had just the man to ably meet those requirements. Maurice Portley, a former Maricopa County Superior Court judge was appointed to Div. I of the Court of Appeals in 2003. Well respected, Judge Portley has a wealth of experience on the bench and is black. If Ducey was looking for diversity, Judge Portly would have been the obvious choice,  If Ducey was seeking experience, selecting Portley would have provided that quality and then some. Several of the other applicants had similar judicial experience. which Ducey’s ultimate selection lacked — though he is politically connected.  If that constitutes the diversity the governor touts, we’ve set sail in needlessly choppy waters.


“Court packing” double talk from the devious left

April 11, 2016

Linda Valdez, the far-left editorial writer at the Periódico de la República de Arizona (Arizona Republic) is having anxiety attacks over what she repeatedly refers to as “packing the court.” A piece of legislation (HB 2537) winding its way through the chambers allows for the addition of two new Supreme Court justices on the Arizona high court, expanding the number from the current five to seven members. Republican Gov. Doug Ducey would make the appointments filling the two vacancies if the bill wins approval.

The court building and bench were constructed to accommodate the increased number of justices.

SRAZ currently takes no position on the plan. But it’s interesting to ponder if Valdez would be so indignant if the date were 1937 and it was the U.S. Supreme Court that was under consideration for expansion to as many as 15 justices.

That was the Machiavellian scheme of Democrat President Franklin Roosevelt who planned to expand the U.S. Supreme Court, allegedly to make it more efficient. Critics charged that Roosevelt was trying to “pack” the court and neutralize Supreme Court justices hostile to his radically liberal “New Deal” of overreaching  federal programs. During the previous two years, the high court struck down several key pieces of New Deal legislation on the grounds that the laws delegated an unconstitutional amount of authority to the executive branch and the federal government.

In an obsessive power grab, Roosevelt then attempted to mandate retirement at full pay for all members of the court over age 70. If a justice refused to retire, an “assistant” with full voting rights was to be appointed, ensuring Roosevelt a liberal majority. Most Republicans and many Democrats in Congress opposed the so-called “court-packing” plan — with the Senate striking it down by a vote of 70 to 22. Ultimately, Roosevelt nominated his first Supreme Court justice, and by 1942 all but two of the justices were his appointees.

Our bet is Linda Valdez would have been all too happy to see such liberal activism from the executive branch in reconfiguring the federal judiciary.

After Franklin Roosevelt was elected to an unprecedented fourth term, the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution was passed, officially limiting presidential tenure in office to two terms of four years each.

Valdez doubtless would have opposed that curtailment of the “president for life” measure, as long as the president was a like-minded liberal.

Smithsonian.com has a wealth of information on FDR and his audacious court packing scheme.


Dem think is mind-bogglingly arrogant

April 6, 2016

The Politico article Clinton aides unite on FBI legal strategy, appears innocuous enough. It describes the fact that a quartet of Hillary Clinton’s former staffers are using the same lawyer during the FBI probe into her reckless use of a private, unsecured server, based in her home — compromising national security data.

Readers must slog through over a dozen paragraphs before the interesting details regarding lawyer Beth Wilkinson emerge. She is not only a high dollar Clinton donor, but also gives generously to the Democrat Party. Potential conflicts aside, Wilkinson is the wife of CNN leftwing political analyst and former “Meet the Press” host, David Gregory. You might recall the dynamic duo send their children to the exclusive and heavily protected Sidwell Friends school in Washington, D.C., but hypocritically want to restrict the rest of us from possessing firearms. 

Have some good rainy day fun visiting the Sunlight Foundation. It’s equality entertaining when the sun is shining — as is forecast today.

“Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants,” remains a much quoted observation of former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis. (1856 – 1941)


Why Justice Scalia mattered

March 30, 2016

On Tuesday we witnessed the full impact of the unexpected loss of Justice Antonin Scalia who died February 13. The U.S. Supreme Court rendered a 4-4 decision on a challenge to organized labor, giving unions a major victory in a case they had previously seemed certain to lose.

The deadlocked decision in Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association upheld a lower court ruling dealing with union fees and is a substantial setback for union foes. Lyle Denniston writing for SCOTUS blog provides an opinion analysis.

A decision in favor of the petitioners would have eliminated what’s known as agency fees –– money paid to unions by non-union members.

Plaintiffs in the case argued that agency fees presented a “significant impingement” on their First Amendment rights of free speech and free association, since collective bargaining is unarguably political. In negotiating with school boards, for example, unions can take positions on issues such as tenure that nonmembers may not support, so teachers who decide not to join the local union should not have to contribute to those costs.

The California Teachers Association and its parent union, the NEA, argued that the fees are not a violation of First Amendment rights because a portion is reimbursed annually, claiming the money covers things that benefit non-union members.

In 1977, the Supreme Court’s decision in Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, held that no one can be forced to join a union or contribute to its political activities, but that teachers unions can charge nonmembers a fee to cover the costs of nonpolitical activities, oddly including collective bargaining.

In recent years, public sector unions have experienced numerous setbacks, with Republican governors and state legislatures successfully challenging collective bargaining — even in Michigan and Wisconsin, regarded as longtime labor strongholds.

The Friedrichs case was not the first to challenge union fees. Last year, in Harris v. Quinn, the justices ruled 5-4, that Medicaid home health workers were not full public employees and therefore could not be compelled to pay collective bargaining union fees –– a  decision that many Supreme Court watchers viewed as a sign the court seemed poised to overturn the precedent set by Abood.

Open Secrets (Center for Responsive Politics) reveals the $19.2 million the American Federation of Teachers and the National Education Association, teachers unions contributed in the 2012 elections and their continuing donations in 2016. Democrats and liberal groups are their favored beneficiaries. Since 1989, the NEA has been the fourth biggest donor out of all organizations tracked by CRP.


AZ Gov. Ducey signs ballot harvesting / felony bill

March 10, 2016

Ballot harvesting — an issue that gained prominence after a three-year mission exposing it by former Maricopa County Republican chairman A. J. LaFaro — was signed into law Wednesday by Gov. Doug Ducey.

Stating HB 2023 maintains election integrity, Gov. Ducey, noted the bill will allow judges to impose a one-year prison term and up to $150,000 fine for the practice employed by political operatives who collect mail-in ballots requested by other voters.  

Here‘s an example of ballot stuffing caught on video. When questioned, the man carrying the boxful of ballots to be put into the voting machine says, “Go F**k yourself, Gringo!”

It’s no surprise the daily newspaper’s left-wing columnist EJ Montini finds a way to characterize this bill that maintains voter integrity, as “voter suppression.”

Liberals always have a sensationalized fallback position when it comes to questionable voting practices.  The guarantee of secure elections should be a fundamental expectation of each and every voter. American citizens, even Democrats, should accept nothing less.


iPhone-banning Bill Montgomery inconsistent on terror threat

February 28, 2016

Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery, released a Feb. 24, 2016 statement advising that his office would stop issuing iPhones to its employees as a result of the company’s current legal dispute with the FBI. Montgomery attempted to defend his decision in an interview on Fox News

Fox and Friends (video under link) weekend anchor Clayton Morris asked Montgomery which phone operating system he would use, since both Google and Microsoft have also come out publicly in support of Apple’s decision not to create a way to circumvent the iPhone’s security for the FBI. Montgomery oddly responded by saying if that is the case, it should give the U.S. Congress the motivation to “reset everything back to where it was.”

After Morris made the point that many iPhone owners don’t want the federal government to have access to their iPhone, Montgomery responded by saying he has more faith in the U.S. Constitution to protect a person’s privacy rather than “some benevolent corporate CEO who thinks he’s the privacy messiah.”

Although Montgomery made news by boycotting iPhones, saying that “Apple is on the side of the terrorists,” he neglects to make the connection that his political associates John McCain and Jeff Flake were instrumental in forming the pro-amnesty Gang of Eight. Along with Chuck Schumer, Dick Durbin, Marco Rubio and a host of other liberals and RINOs — they have worked to keep our border open to illegal invaders including terrorists.

A 2015 Washington Post report details the apprehensions of terrorists at the Texas border. In 2011 Seeing Red AZ posted Hezbollah on our doorstep: Radical Muslims in border towns. This is not a new phenomenon as evidenced by this San Diego ABC 10 News report detailing the Shi’a Muslim terrorist group Hezbollah’s long established foothold in the city. As far back as 2001 WND reported that Middle Eastern illegals find easy entrance into U.S. from Mexico.

Montgomery, his employees, the citizens of Maricopa County and the state of Arizona would be better served if he showed some backbone and called out Arizona Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake for their overt efforts in leaving us all vulnerable to terrorism. iPhones are the least of it.


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