Thursday, July 30, 2020

Really David? Bipartisan Congressional investigators say it was not harmless UPDATED with a video statement from Democratic candidate Anita Malik

For more than two years following disclosure of the scandal involving his former chief of staff, David Schweikert, the Republican Congressman allegedly representing Arizona's Sixth district, claimed his own ethics problems with harmless clerical errors. He emphatically declared that he would be exonerated. He ultimately would come out of this clean.
He lied.

Yesterday, the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) released its report on the Arizona Republican.
This report: (1) summarizes the Committee’s investigation of Representative David Schweikert relating to violations of House Rules, the Code of Ethics for Government Service, federal laws and other applicable standards related to campaign finance violations and reporting errors by his authorized campaign committees, the misuse of his Members’ Representational Allowance for unofficial purposes, pressuring official staff to perform campaign work, and his lack of candor during the investigation; (2) adopts the attached report of the Investigative Subcommittee (ISC) in the Matter of Representative Schweikert; (3) addresses Representative Schweikert’s views on the ISC Report; and (4) recommends to the House of Representatives that, pursuant to Article I, Section 5, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution and Committee Rule 24(e), the House of Representatives adopt this report and, by such action, Representative Schweikert be reprimanded and fined $50,000.
Isn't "lack of candor" a euphemistic expression for deception? Report excerpts follow:
Representative Schweikert’s campaign committees erroneously disclosed or failed to disclose at least $305,000 in loans or repayment of loans made or obtained for the benefit of his congressional campaigns; failed to report at least $25,000 in disbursements made by his campaigns; failed to report more than $140,000 in contributions received by his campaigns; and falsely reported making disbursements totaling $100,000.
Schweikert’s former Chief of Staff made over $270,000 worth of impermissible outlays on behalf of Representative Schweikert’s campaign and at least three other members of Representative Schweikert’s congressional staff made impermissible outlays, totaling less than $500. Representative Schweikert knew or should have known that Mr. Schwab made substantial purchases on behalf of his campaign, but did not prevent the practice. Congressional employees are prohibited under federal law from making contributions to the campaign of their employing Member; certain outlays, even if reimbursed, are considered contributions and are thus impermissible. 
Representative Schweikert misused campaign funds for personal purposes by accepting personal items from staff that were reimbursed by campaign funds. Between 2011 and 2018, at least four members of Representative Schweikert’s congressional staff paid for personal items for Representative Schweikert, including food and babysitting services, and were then reimbursed for those items by Representative Schweikert’s campaign. The conversion of campaign funds to personal use violated FECA [Federal Employees Compensation Act] and the FEC’s [Federal Election Commission] implementing regulations, violated House Rule XXIII, clause 6, which states campaign funds must be kept separate and cannot be converted to personal use, and violated paragraph 2 of the Code of Ethics for Government Service.
Representative Schweikert’s Members’ Representational Allowance (MRA) was used for non-official purposes. Between January 2011 and November 2017, Representative Schweikert’s official resources—including official funds, staff time, and congressional office space—were improperly used for unofficial and campaign purposes...  Representative Schweikert failed to provide the oversight necessary to prevent misuse of his MRA.
Fifth, members of Representative Schweikert’s congressional staff were pressured to perform campaign work.
Representative Schweikert violated House Rule XXIII, clause 1 by failing to exercise the proper diligence necessary in responding to the allegations and the ISC determined that his testimony lacked credibility. Representative Schweikert’s lack of candor and due diligence formed the basis for Count XI of the SAV.
In addition, the Committee defers to the ISC’s findings that Representative Schweikert’s testimony lacked candor at times. In taking issue with the ISC’s questioning strategy, Representative Schweikert attempts to shift his responsibility to provide truthful and candid testimony into an affirmative duty of the ISC to inform him whenever he gave untruthful testimony. However, the ISC findings with respect to his lack of candor were not over minor memory lapses or slight deviations from others’ testimony but were due to its serious concerns regarding Representative Schweikert’s own affirmative and self-serving statements, some which were not responsive to any question posed, and which were squarely inconsistent with the record the ISC obtained.
The Committee appreciates that Representative Schweikert made substantial efforts to cooperate with the investigation by, among other things, producing thousands of pages of documents in response to the ISC’s requests for information and by submitting a sua sponte report detailing his campaign’s acceptance of outlays; however, as the ISC explained, “there is no number of pages produced or dollars spent on lawyers that can substitute for actually acknowledging and providing candid responses to specific allegations of unethical conduct.
Throughout the course of this investigation, Representative Schweikert made vague or misleading statements to the ISC and OCE that allowed him to evade the statute of limitations for the most egregious violations of campaign finance laws, his document productions were slow or non-responsive to several of the ISC’s requests for information regarding FEC errors, and he gave self-serving testimony that lacked candor. Efforts like the ones Representative Schweikert undertook to delay and impede the ISC’s investigation were not only highly detrimental to the Committee’s work and reputation of the House, they were themselves sanctionable misconduct.
This matter should serve as an important reminder to all individuals within the House community that when confronted with allegations of unethical conduct, they should take immediate steps to investigate and correct the issues and ensure that they do not occur again in the future. Allowing unethical conduct to continue in a Member’s campaign and/or congressional office makes that Member complicit in the violation and the offending Member will be held accountable.  
The ultimate accountability for David Schweikert's self-serving tenure in Congress is coming in three months.

From The Atlantic, in 2018, Why the FBI Fires People for "Lack of Candor,"
"Lack of candor is untruthfulness or an attempt to dissemble from the point of view of the investigator,” said Dave Gomez, a former FBI agent and a senior fellow at George Washington University’s Center for Cyber and Homeland Security. “The problem comes when, in answering a question, the person under investigation attempts to spin his answer in order to present his actions in the best possible light. This is normal human behavior, but can be interpreted as a lack of candor by the investigator.” 

It's time for the VOTERS of Arizona's Sixth district to fire David Schweikert for his lack of candor. My choice at this time to represent me in the next Congress, come 2021, is Anita Malik.



The election for president in November will not revolve around what the Democratic National Committee does or does not do in the next 90+ days.

The American people believe, in my opinion, that Joe Biden is the right candidate for this moment. He is the anti-Trump. Joe is competent, smart, warm, experienced and just about everything else that our country needs him to be... that the current White House occupant is not.

MSNBC host Joy Reid interviewed Mary Trump last night. In this video segment, Ms. Trump cites two factors that she believes will ensure Trump will not challenge the election outcome or resist the obvious eviction he faces. This video is less than four minutes long.

I believe WE -- the American electorate -- can and will make that happen. The zeitgeist in 2020 is just not on Trump's side. He doesn't have a rabbit that he can magically pull out of his hat. He's got a very limited repertoire of tricks. We already know he thinks Fascism is his ticket to victory. As long as we stay focused, he will be toast on the day after the election.

In 2000, the election was close.

In 2016, other factors made the election close enough that Trump was able to demagogue his way into office.

That's just not going to happen this time. By the way, I'm not superstitious. Just make sure you and your family and friends VOTE.

On this day which marks the funeral of Congressman John Lewis, the New York Times published his final op-ed essay.
Like so many young people today, I was searching for a way out, or some might say a way in, and then I heard the voice of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on an old radio. He was talking about the philosophy and discipline of nonviolence. He said we are all complicit when we tolerate injustice. He said it is not enough to say it will get better by and by. He said each of us has a moral obligation to stand up, speak up and speak out.
Democracy is not a state. It is an act, and each generation must do its part to help build what we called the Beloved Community, a nation and world society at peace with itself.
Ordinary people with extraordinary vision can redeem the soul of America by getting in what I call good trouble, necessary trouble. Voting and participating in the democratic process are key. The vote is the most powerful nonviolent change agent you have in a democratic society. You must use it because it is not guaranteed. You can lose it.
You must also study and learn the lessons of history because humanity has been involved in this soul-wrenching, existential struggle for a very long time. People on every continent have stood in your shoes, though decades and centuries before you. The truth does not change, and that is why the answers worked out long ago can help you find solutions to the challenges of our time. Continue to build union between movements stretching across the globe because we must put away our willingness to profit from the exploitation of others.
Though I may not be here with you, I urge you to answer the highest calling of your heart and stand up for what you truly believe. In my life I have done all I can to demonstrate that the way of peace, the way of love and nonviolence is the more excellent way. Now it is your turn to let freedom ring.
When historians pick up their pens to write the story of the 21st century, let them say that it was your generation who laid down the heavy burdens of hate at last and that peace finally triumphed over violence, aggression and war. So I say to you, walk with the wind, brothers and sisters, and let the spirit of peace and the power of everlasting love be your guide.
John Lewis' truth is marching on.

Monday, July 27, 2020

Mnuchin's failure of imagination?

With the $600/week Covid19 pandemic boost to Unemployment Insurance benefits set to expire in days, Trump's Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin repeatedly emphasizes that it just wouldn't be fair to pay people more to stay home than to go out and get a job. I disagree.

It seems Mr. Mnuchin can't imagine why looking out for THE PEOPLE, rather than the Corporations would be fair.

Mnuchin's unstated premise is that giving people more money than they would receive from a job provides incentive to not work. Wouldn't it have been wonderful for the interviewer to ask what Mnuchin thinks those people do with their time instead of participating in gainful employment? Some of them spend time recovering from Covid19 infections. Some of them take care of their children (a HUGE benefit to America when children actually get loving care from a parent or parents). Some of them may be thinking of creative endeavors. But as the Treasury secretary acknowledges in the video, these people are SPENDING money. And that IS helping the economy.

What Mnuchin is really saying is that he and Trump are not interested in the quality of life of families with children who need human care and contact; and are not interested in so many other things that Americans have been suffering for the last five decades (not limited to just the last five months) or so.

Since the publication of the Powell Manifesto in 1971, the rights of working and Middle Class families have been gradually squeezed beyond breaking points. That is, very much like the analogy of the frog dropped into a pan of room temperature water on a stove and turning on the gas. It has taken half a century to get to the place where we can no longer avoid the realization that we have reached the boiling point.

Mnuchin and Chris Wallace really should have been talking about UBI--Universal Basic Income. Dutch historian Rutger Bregman, dedicated an entire chapter in his book, Utopia for Realists, to UBI.

The fact is that many of the jobs of yesterday and today have been disrupted by technological innovation not necessarily just by covid19. The GOP in the US would rather not deal with it. Instead, they extend former Florida Congressman Alan Greyson's incisive insight from debate over the Affordable Care Act, to what can't be done with or for people whose jobs have simply disappeared, "Die quickly."

From Bregman's book,
A year and a half after the experiment began [a 2009 experiment in London with UBI], seven of the thirteen rough sleepers [homeless persons] had a roof over their heads. Two more were about to move into their own apartments. All thirteen had taken critical steps toward solvency and personal growth. 
They were enrolled in classes, learning to cook, going through rehab, visiting their families, and making plans for the future. “It empowers people,” one of the social workers said about the personalized budget. “It gives choices. I think it can make a difference.” After decades of fruitless pushing, pulling, pampering, penalizing, prosecuting, and protecting, nine notorious vagrants had finally been brought in from the streets. The cost? Some £50,000 a year, including the social workers’ wages. In other words, not only did the project help thirteen people, it also cut costs considerably. Even the Economist had to conclude that the “most efficient way to spend money on the homeless might be to give it to them.”
Bregman, Rutger. Utopia for Realists (pp. 26-27). Little, Brown and Company. Kindle Edition. 
Just like the short-sighted Mnuchin and the Trump administration in general, might I too be too narrowly focused if I were to characterize them as ultimately only concerned about "the economy" rather than the people who spend money to keep the economy going?

The drama and rhetoric from Trump for the last couple of months has been mostly about re-opening schools without addressing the underlying health and safety matters (so parents can go back to work). Thereby performing CPR and pumping oxygen back into "Trump's economy" so it would hopefully be revived. Drama because without a flattened covid curve and addressing underlying  matters, there can be no economic recovery. The premature re-opening of Arizona (and Georgia, Texas and Florida) provide salient evidence of that very point.

I maintain that giving people more money NOW can help families get out from under massive debt and allow them to actually thrive. In the 1990s, I took on two mortgages. The pressure induced anxiety, which limited my productivity. In 2005, the housing bubble rescued me and I sold that home for a gain. The load was lifted off my shoulders. That made all the difference in the world for my mental, physical and financial health.

Of course, it seems too much to ask for Trump and his cabinet ministers to frame their planning, discussions and Congressional negotiations in terms of what is best for the American people.

The way my imagination sees it, at this moment in history, having the House of Representatives controlled by Democrats, may be the only thing keeping us from utter disaster.

Reality is disrupting the ideology of today’s Republican Party

Today's insight comes from historian Heather Cox Richardson. Please subscribe to her free newsletter (she has a paid option also).

Actually, Professor Richardson's latest newsletter succinctly synthesizes the bottom line issues at stake in the 2020 general election. They are the same issues as presented in 2016, but now they are out in the open. Four years ago, election season rhetoric effectively put a veil over the eyes of our collective mind to obscure our ability to recognize what was at stake. Now, after more than three and a half years with Trump at the helm, that veil has been lifted... for anyone paying attention.
Reality is disrupting the ideology of today’s Republican Party.
For a generation, Republicans have tried to unravel the activist government under which Americans have lived since the 1930s, when Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt created a government that regulated business, provided a basic social safety net, and invested in infrastructure. From the beginning, that government was enormously popular. Both Republicans and Democrats believed that the principle behind it—that the country worked best when government protected and defended ordinary Americans—was permanent.
Many, at first, thought it was permanent. But there were conspiracies to defeat the New Deal and overthrow the American federal government from the start.
But the ideologues who now control the Republican Party have always wanted to get rid of this New Deal state and go back to the world of the 1920s, when businessmen ran the government. They believe that government regulation and taxation is an assault on their liberty, because it restricts their ability to make money.
Yeah, restricts their ability to make money by exploiting working class/Main Street Americans.
They have won office not by convincing Americans to give up their own government benefits—most Americans actually like clean water and Social Security and safe bridges—but by selling a narrative in which “Liberals” are trying to undermine the country by stealing the tax dollars of hardworking Americans—quietly understood to be white men—and redistributing them to lazy people who want handouts, not-so-quietly understood to be people of color and feminist women. According to this narrative, legislation that protects ordinary Americans simply redistributes wealth. It is “socialism,” or “communism.”
I came of age (graduated from high school in 1972, the year after) after publication of the 1971 Powell Manifesto. Powell's piece spurred a political movement that gave rise to ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council. ALEC focused state legislative power to achieve the ends Richardson describes. For more insight, you might be interested in viewing Frances Causey's documentary Heist: Who Stole the American Dream. This White, Liberal American experienced, for many years (decades) the erosion of worker rights.
Meanwhile, Republican policies have actually redistributed wealth upward. When voters began to turn against those policies, Republicans upped the ante, saying that “Liberals” were simply buying Black votes with handouts, or, as Carly Fiorina said in a 2016 debate, planning to butcher babies and sell their body parts. To make sure Republicans stayed in power, they suppressed voting by people likely to vote Democratic, and gerrymandered states so that even if Democrats won a majority of votes, they would have a minority of representatives.
This system rewarded those who moved to the right, not to the middle. It gave them Donald Trump as a 2016 candidate, who talked of Mexican immigrants as criminals and rapists and treated women not as equals but as objects either for sex or derision.
And, although as a candidate Trump talked about making taxes fairer, improving health care, and helping those struggling economically, in fact as president he has done more to bring about the destruction of the New Deal state than most of his predecessors. He has slashed regulations, given a huge tax cut to the wealthy, and gutted the government.
If the end of the New Deal state is going to usher in a new era of peace and prosperity, it should be now.
But it can't and therefore, it won't.
Instead, the gutting of our government destroyed our carefully constructed pandemic response teams and plans, leaving America vulnerable to the coronavirus. Pressed to take the lead on combating the virus, the administration refused to use federal power, and instead relied on “public-private partnerships” which meant states were largely on their own. When governors tried to take over, the Republican objection to government regulation, cultivated over a generation, had people refusing to wear masks or follow government instructions.
As the rest of the world watches in horror, we have suffered more than 4 million infections, and are approaching 150,000 deaths.
The pandemic also crashed the economy as businesses shut down to avoid infections. It threw more than 20 million Americans out of work. Republican ideology says the government has no business supporting ordinary Americans: they should work to survive, even if that means they have to take the risk of contracting Covid-19. Schools should open, businesses should get up and going, and the economy should rebuild. As Texas’s lieutenant governor Dan Patrick said to Fox News Channel personality Tucker Carlson in March, grandparents should be willing to contract coronavirus for the U.S. to “get back to work.”
The coronavirus has brought the Republican narrative up against reality. Just 32% of Americans approve of Trump’s handling of the coronavirus, and only 38% of the country think the economy is good. Americans believe that the government should have done a better job managing the pandemic, and they do not believe they should risk their lives for the economy.
To try to deflect attention from the failure of his approach to the coronavirus, Trump is once, again, escalating the narrative. He has launched an offensive against Democratic cities, trying to convince voters he is protecting them from "violent anarchists" coddled by Democrats.
Brazen Fascism.
He is using federal law enforcement officers in unprecedented ways, not to quell protests, but to escalate them. In Portland, Oregon, as officers have used tear gas, less-than-lethal munitions (which nonetheless fractured a man’s skull), and batons to attack protesters, the events, which had fallen to a few hundred attendees, grew again into the thousands. And now the administration is planning to send in more officers, to escalate further.
The Republicans’ ideology is also making it impossible for them to deal with the economy. We are on the verge of a catastrophe as the $600 weekly federal bonus attached to state unemployment benefits runs out this week just as the moratorium on evictions for an inability to pay rent ends. At the same time, state and local budgets, hammered by the pandemic, will mean more layoffs.
The House passed a $3 trillion bill in May to address these issues, along with providing more money to combat the coronavirus, but Republicans in the Senate rejected it out of hand. Today on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) went back to his ideological roots. “The only objective Democrats have is to defeat Donald Trump, and they've cynically decided the best way to defeat Donald Trump is shut down every business in America, shut down every school in America," he said. House Speaker "Nancy Pelosi talks about working men and women. What she's proposing is keeping working men and women from working." "Her objectives are shoveling cash at the problem and shutting America down.”
Instead, both Trump and Cruz want a payroll tax cut, which will do little to stimulate the economy since the tens of millions who have lost their jobs would not see any money, and this late in the year much of the tax has already been paid. But the payroll tax cut is popular among Republican ideologues because it funds Social Security and Medicare. Cut it, and those programs take a hit.
Today Trump’s chief of staff Mark Meadows and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin took to the Sunday talk shows to try to reassure people that the Republicans would, in fact, manage to cobble together a relief bill in the next few days (after not writing one in the last two months). They are talking about passing piecemeal measures, but, recognizing that this means Republicans will call all the shots, Pelosi says no.
Meadows and Mnuchin say they want liability protection for businesses and schools if they open and people get Covid-19. They were also clear they would not agree to extending the $600 federal addition to state unemployment benefits, arguing that it simply “paid people to stay home.” They say they want to guarantee people 70% of their wages, but the reason the earlier bill had a flat $600 payment was because it appeared impossible for states to administer a complicated program based on a percentage, so this might well just be a straw argument.
The Republican approach to handling the coronavirus and the economy is apparently not to turn to our government, but to put our heads down, go on as usual, and hope for a vaccine. What will end the pandemic is “not masks. It’s not shutting down the economy," Meadows said. “Hopefully it is American ingenuity that will allow for therapies and vaccines to ultimately conquer this.”


Sunday, July 26, 2020

Obstruction of Justice--When the president does it, it is CORRUPTION

Republican former DOJ prosecutors make it very clear that Trump is NOT a law and order president.

This administration, in my view, has an absolute disregard for the law. -- Jeffrey Harris, Deputy Associate Attorney General under Ronald Reagan.

When the president does it, it is CORRUPTION. Thus saith We the People!

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Stochastic terrorism is NOT the last word

Investigators believe a fire that caused extensive damage to state Democratic Party headquarters early on Friday in downtown Phoenix was intentionally set.
Heavy smoke and fire were billowing from the building about 1 a.m. near Central Avenue and Thomas Road as Phoenix firefighters arrived at the scene. They quickly entered the building in search of people and began a fire attack to put out the flames, according to officials.
No one was inside the building at the time, and no injuries were reported.
Phoenix Fire Investigation Task Force and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigators were investigating the fire. Phoenix police spokeswoman Sgt. Mercedes Fortune said the incident is being investigated as an arson based on evidence discovered at the scene.
We know that the orange menace has consistently encouraged harm to people who oppose him. We know that some of his credulous followers sometimes are too quickly subject to conjuring up ways to "help" the MAGA movement. We also know that Trump is counting on Gov. Doug Ducey to deliver our state's electoral college votes this fall.
Keeping Arizona red shouldn’t be a challenge; the state has long been a Republican stronghold. But Arizona is changing rapidly, and right now, the forecast for the GOP looks grim... 
One might think that, in its moment of peril, the Arizona GOP would attempt to win over moderates. Yet the person charged with shepherding the party to victory in this most crucial moment is the state GOP chairperson Kelli Ward, a pro-Trump zealot with a soft spot for conspiracy theories, a woman who is most famous for her failed primary challenge to Republican Senator John McCain in 2016. Just as polls show Arizonans—especially those in the suburbs—souring on Trump, the state party has veered sharply to the right. [...]
The 51-year-old Ward is a different sort of Republican. During her time as a state senator representing parts of the ultra-red La Paz and Mohave Counties in northwest Arizona, Ward paid a visit to Cliven Bundy’s Nevada ranch in solidarity with the rancher’s standoff against the Bureau of Land Management; suggested that the Affordable Care Act was part of a broader plot to push rural Americans into urban areas; and entertained constituent concerns about the chemtrail conspiracy theory, the idea that the government is using airplanes to poison American citizens.
To her credit, Ward was smart enough to disavow the domestic terrorist attack on the Democratic Party HQ in Phoenix. But that brief statement doesn't erase or mitigate the suggestibility of fringe elements in the AZGOP.

Nevertheless, as much as the perpetrators might count this as a victory in the contest for ideas in this monumentally important election season, it will do exactly the opposite. Why? Because The Obstacle is the Way. Author Ryan Holiday, in his book by that title, spells out how Stoic philosophy in life today takes difficult events in stride and yields even greater determination.

Video from

From Steven Slugocki, chair of the Maricopa County Democratic Party
THANK YOU to everyone who joined us today for our convention. We had nearly 800 people attend today. The past 36 hours have been incredibly difficult but your love and support has brought me to tears many times. Thank you Maritza Miranda Saenz and our incredible staff for making magic happen today *and everyday*. Welcome to the MCDP Board Jade Duran and Alejandro Larios, I cannot wait to work together in your new roles. The donations to aid our recovery from around the country have been overwhelming. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.
It is an honor and I am so proud to be the Chairman of this incredible organization, we will get through this difficult time together. I love you all. Thank you.

If you'd like to donate to the recovery fund for either the Arizona Democratic Party or Maricopa County Democratic Party, you may click the embedded links.

Friday, July 24, 2020

It's Friday, do you know where your Inspector General is?

Hopefully, Trump isn't going to fire another inspector general this week, but you never know.

However, I want to show you why I believe Anita Malik is the right Democratic candidate to face the incumbent Republican in the November general election for Congress in Arizona's Sixth District.

Beside the fact that in 2018 she beat a well funded Democratic challenger and garnered 15 percent more general election votes than previous challengers had in the lopsided Republican district, Anita's family -- during that 2018 campaign -- faced a major health and financial challenge. Unlike her ethically challenged Republican opponent, who has been consistently more concerned about the rights of corporations, Anita Malik clearly knows and identifies with the major concerns of Main Street Americans and Arizonans.

I already voted in Arizona's statewide primary election (August 4), for Anita Malik. If you live in the same Congressional district, I hope you also will (or have) vote(d) for Anita in this election.

Hopefully, this evening will not bring news of a new inspector general removal by The Most Dangerous Man on the Planet. Yet there's already chatter about the expiration of the $600/week Covid19 Pandemic unemployment benefits. Given that unemployment numbers still rival the Great Depression, citizens have to wonder whose interest their Congressional representative will fight for in today's effort to extend those benefits.

There's no question in my mind that Anita Malik is who I want looking out for my interests in Washington, rather than the ethically-challenged Republican incumbent.
The House Ethics Committee has released information on an expanded list of allegations against Rep. David Schweikert. The Arizona Republican is under investigation by the panel, which made public a second referral from the Office of Congressional Ethics.
Under House Ethics rules, the committee is required to release OCE referrals one year after they are sent to the House.
The OCE previously found “substantial reason” to believe Schweikert authorized expenditures from his Members’ Representational Allowance, or MRA, that his former chief of staff, Richard Oliver Schwab Jr., made outside the scope of permissible official expenses.
The new OCE report includes allegations that Schweikert may have received gifts or loans from a congressional employee that were later reimbursed from his official office account.
The latest allegations — which the office submitted to the House Ethics Committee last September — prompted the panel to expand the scope of its inquiry. The report shows that the OCE board voted unanimously to recommend an expanded inquiry into Schweikert.
Vote Anita Malik for Congress in Arizona's Sixth District.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

George Will declares for Joe Biden

"The most important thing is to clear the ground so we start over with American normal politics."

On June 3, 2016, George Will says, he stopped being a Republican but did not stop being a conservative. It's time to get back to normal political argument.
The day after Mr. Biden wins, which I am confident is going to be a decisive victory, I will be in the corner saying we've got to stop some of these Biden policies. That's the job of a normal loyal opposition. But Donald Trump has cured me of the vice of presidential fastidiousness...
Please take four minutes to let Will explain to you for himself why he will vote for Joe Biden and why he is so confident the American people will take him out like so much smelly garbage.

"Let's have the election tomorrow and get on with this."

If you're interested in more of Will's perspective on the Republican Party, the Trump administration and the upcoming general election, here's video from an interview he did on today with journalist and Washington Bureau chief for USAToday Susan Page.

Sunday, July 19, 2020

The Room where IT Happened? Is IT still happening? What is IT?

Just days after Mary Trump's book about the emotional and psychological dysfunction that made the current president the most dangerous man on the planet, my turn came up to borrow a Kindle version of John Bolton's book, The Room Where It Happened, through the Scottsdale Library.

Reading the first page of Bolton's book, I also have listened to a couple of interviews with Mary Trump. It has been blatantly obvious from the beginning that the president's mental condition is far from healthy or normal for well socialized humans. Yet, I now feel like I have far more insight on the last three and a half years of turmoil than I did just a week ago.

My impression is that the following passage is the bottom-line description of the Trump presidency, from the perspective of a public policy veteran (Bolton) at the highest levels of American government.
The axis of adults in many respects caused enduring problems not because they successfully managed Trump, as the High-Minded (an apt description I picked up from the French for those who see themselves as our moral betters) have it, but because they did precisely the opposite. They didn’t do nearly enough to establish order, and what they did do was so transparently self-serving and so publicly dismissive of many of Trump’s very clear goals (whether worthy or unworthy) that they fed Trump’s already-suspicious mind-set [probably the better word here is "paranoia"], making it harder for those who came later to have legitimate policy exchanges with the President. I had long felt that the role of the National Security Advisor was to ensure that a President understood what options were open to him for any given decision he needed to make, and then to ensure that this decision was carried out by the pertinent bureaucracies. [use of "bureaucracies" rather than agencies suggests Bolton's contempt for the American federal government in general. This, if true, seems to reflect the view point that GOP elected and appointed officials as well as legislators are inherently dangerous to the actual conduct of government. Thomas Paine, in Common Sense, referred to government as a necessary evil. The Republican Party of today acts like it simply considers government evil.] The National Security Council process was certain to be different for different Presidents, but these were the critical objectives the process should achieve.
Because, however, the axis of adults had served Trump so poorly, [was it even possible for any Trump staffers to do anything but kiss his ass, knowing that if they did not, they would be quickly and unceremoniously fired, setting up an inevitable Catch-22?] he second-guessed people’s motives, saw conspiracies behind rocks, and remained stunningly uninformed on how to run the White House [it seems reasonable at this point to surmise that Bolton was woefully unequipped to even recognize the psychological pathologies causing Trump's tragic inability to even come close to handling the job he was elected to fulfill], let alone the huge federal government. The axis of adults is not entirely responsible for this mind-set. Trump is Trump. I came to understand that he believed he could run the Executive Branch and establish national-security policies on instinct [in other words, he was incapable of recognizing wise counsel, as he has publicly articulated himself on numerous occasions], relying on personal relationships with foreign leaders, and with made-for-television showmanship always top of mind. Now, instinct, personal relations, and showmanship are elements of any President’s repertoire. But they are not all of it, by a long stretch. Analysis, planning, intellectual discipline and rigor, evaluation of results, course corrections, and the like are the blocking and tackling of presidential decision-making, the unglamorous side of the job. [This Trump has never and will never even attempt to do] Appearance takes you only so far.
Bolton, John R. . The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir (pp. 1-2). Simon & Schuster. Kindle Edition.

Note, beyond Bolton's introduction, which makes clear that Trump is acting like he's from a different universe, I'm not sure there's really much reason to buy or even read this book. We KNOW Trump is not a normal person. We know that Trump conned the American electorate. We also now know, more from Mary Trump's disclosures, details of the underlying pathologies at work in the mind of the person now (rightfully... only because of the American electoral system AND wrongly... because of the con he passed off as truth and reality) entrusted with the full power of the American federal government.

Each day he does something more egregious than that last. Therefore, there can no longer be any reasonable doubt about the outcome of the November 2020 general election for president. Of course, that doubt can be and still is imagined. We're far too close to November 3, 2020 to produce a major story about what that doubt would, if the unthinkable was to happen, look like...

But... he will cheat. But he will suppress the vote. But he will not accept the outcome of the election.

To each of those statements I suggest that the voter turnout will reach record territory, in a good way.

There will be minimal apathy this year.

Declaring Trump's defeat is no longer an invocation of superstition-based bad luck.

We're not looking for a miracle. We're looking for the natural consequence and ramification of everything he has done since January 20, 2017.

Will he accept the outcome of the election?

Will he, when compared with the end of the reigns of his archetypes and models Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler, be able to claim that not being immediately shot to death or committing suicide in lieu of capture makes him a winner?


Monday, July 13, 2020

Applications available for the 2021 Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission

Commission on Appellate Court Appointments News Release

Contact: Blanca Moreno
(602) 452-3098


Applications are being accepted by the Commission on Appellate Court Appointments for the Independent Redistricting Commission, which will oversee the mapping of Arizona’s congressional and legislative districts beginning in 2021. 

In accordance with Arizona State Constitution Article 4, Part 2, Section 1, residents of all Arizona counties are eligible to apply. 

To be eligible, applicants must be registered Arizona voters who have been continuously registered with the same political party or as unaffiliated with a political party for the last three years. 

People who have held or run for a public office (other than a school board), served as an officer of a political party or a candidate’s campaign committee, or worked as a registered paid lobbyist during the past three years are not eligible

The application form can be downloaded at the Judicial Department website: 

Applications may also be obtained from the Administrative Office of the Courts, Human Resources Department by calling (602) 452-3311, or by sending an electronic mail request to

A signed original application with all attachments must be submitted to:

Administrative office of the Courts, 
Human Resources Department, 
1501 W. Washington, Suite 221, 
Phoenix, AZ 85007 

not later than 5 p.m. on August 20, 2020

Incomplete applications or applications received after this deadline will not be considered for nomination. 

The Commission on Appellate Court Appointments will review the applications and nominate a pool of 25 candidates. 

Four elected officials will appoint the first four members of the Redistricting Commission

The fifth member will be chosen by the four members appointed to the commission. 

Redistricting Commission members are barred from seeking or holding any public office in Arizona or for registration as a paid lobbyist during their term on the commission and for three years following.


As an aside, I will NOT apply to become a redistricting commissioner. 

Lord willing and the creek don't rise, however, I still intend to observe the proceedings of the 2021 Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission and the screening process for applicants in the Commission on Appellate Court Appointments. 

The Neoprogressive Moment and What to Do With It

The following post, an opinion column in the Anti-Trump publication, The Bulwark, was written by Thomas J. Main, professor at Baruch College, CUNY, Marxe School of Public and International Affairs

There's one constitutional amendment that could change the entire dynamic of American politics.
What happens after Trump?
There are a number of possibilities, some more likely than others. In the near term, these will be determined by the outcome of November 3. If Trump wins, we move to one universe of outcomes. If he loses, we move to another. And if he is defeated decisively, with Democrats also holding the House and capturing the Senate, we then move to a third universe.
This last set of outcomes is the most interesting to contemplate because it offers the largest number of chances for substantive change in America’s political system. Because a realigning election is one thing, but a realignment taking place in reaction against a sitting president is something that happens once or twice in a lifetime.
What could America do with such a realigned government? Political conditions of the last half century have made non-incremental forms of political change nearly impossible. (We’ll get to this in a moment.) But full control of the White House and Congress would offer the chance to implement constitutional and policy reforms that could make substantial changes for the white working class and destroy any remaining vestiges of Trumpism among Republicans and the nation at large.
So if governmental syzygy is achieved, we should think big. Really big. What we should hope and work for is an episode of change on a level with the Progressive Era, which brought American government into the modern age. We need a Neoprogressive Era that will bring American government into the postmodern age. Think about it this way: The upheavals of the Sixties threw many moderate liberals into the arms of the Republicans, creating neoconservatives and a lasting center-right coalition. Well, today the Trump disaster is pushing many moderate conservatives into the arms of the Democratic party and creating neoprogressives. And these groups, too, could create a lasting coalition.
But in such a moment of political syzygy, long-delayed, non-incremental reforms would be possible. And this is where the real change would have to happen in order to bring along the Trump constituency. Such synergy can redistribute resources to those who have lost out in the processes of globalization and capitalist creative destruction.
These left-behind Americans have been a key constituency for Trump and addressing their legitimate grievances is a necessary, though not sufficient [on its own], condition for dismantling Trumpism for good. [Vance's Hillbilly Elegy documented one family's story of that situation. Trump saw it, perhaps before anyone else politically positioned to exploit it and he DID exploit it, bigly.]
Why is a neoprogressive moment needed?
Because our American system is no longer capable of non-incremental change.
America’s interest-group politics has obvious collective action problems. Because no one faction is concerned with any interest except its own, our system has trouble generating public goods.
This notion is well demonstrated in the fact that interest group nonprofit organizations are now incentivized to grow blinders. This tends to narrow their vision to only what will advance that particular interest. When something comes along to compliment the effort (and the fundraising for said effort), that group may be inclined to devise a rationalization for trying to minimize the effectiveness of that complimentary effort.

Case in point, The Nation, a liberal/progressive publication featuring news and ideas, rightfully despises Trump. But on July 1, it published an attack on the Lincoln Project. Lincoln Project was founded by Republicans and former Republicans disaffected by the Trump administration. The project mainly produces succinct video ads that attack and routinely get under the skin of the president. Rather than attack, one perhaps would reasonably surmise that the interests of The Nation and the Lincoln Project could work synergistically, finding common ground, to advance common interests. Nevertheless,
We face:
  • The exploitation of large, unorganized interests by narrow, better organized ones
  • Difficulty in redistributing the results of economic growth
  • Increased economic inequality
  • Weakness in creating public goods
  • Ineffective responses to the dislocations of creative destruction and globalization
  • And inept responses to public health dangers, such as pandemics
To some degree these problems are the byproduct of good things, such as our pluralistic politics and the Constitution. But they are problems nonetheless and cannot be addressed by incremental changes such as tweaking current legislation or passing new legislation that is marginally better.
So how do we do better?
The most obvious route large-scale change has historically been been bipartisan cooperation. But the sorting out of the political parties into relatively uniform organs of ideological movements created enough polarization that this approach may no longer be realistic.
Another approach is the idea-based/entrepreneurial model, which depends on the development of a consensus of expert opinion on a thorny policy problem (such as pollution, tax, or welfare reform). Building consensus can take decades, but when it crystalizes, policy entrepreneurs put it to good use. Their task is to translate the expert consensus into a public idea for use by non-experts in a way that remains faithful to the original insight. Phrases such as “the right to clean air,” or “end welfare as we know it,” are examples of public ideas that created a climate of opinion in favor of change that became powerful enough to create their own coalitions to secure passage.
The idea-based/entrepreneurial model was effective from the early ’70s through the late ’90s, but has been less so since the turn of the millennium. It depended on the development of an expert consensus that all parties respected. But the rise of the internet has meant the death of expertise, making an authoritative consensus much harder to develop or popularly leverage even if it finally crystalizes.
So the mechanism that is most amenable to non-incremental change would be a realigning election that ushers in a period of unified government. We can call this the presidential/majoritarian model. And we might well see it as the last arrow in America’s constitutional quiver for producing big change.
And if a Democratic landslide did produce a moment of institutional unity? What should be done with it? I would argue that we should focus our energies on improving the capacity of our political institutions for collective action through constitutional reform.
There is a long list of proposed constitutional amendments waiting for their chance, ranging from the elimination of the Electoral College to an amendment that would allow the president to submit a legislative agenda directly to Congress, which would be required promptly to vote the entire package up or down, without amendments, on a strict majoritarian basis.
But if we’re going to go the difficult route of amending the Constitution, the change ought to be even more fundamental: an amendment which changes the amendment process itself.
This idea has, in various ways, already been incorporated into most state constitutions and therefore received ample road testing. The Article V process for amending the Constitution is notoriously daunting [rightfully so], and far more difficult than the amendment process of any other liberal democracy. Why do we assume that this is the optimal design?
State constitutions are vastly more malleable than the federal Constitution. Our federal Constitution has been amended only 27 times—the first 10 being immediately passed as the Bill of Rights—yet only 19 of the states still have their original constitutions. Most states have adopted three or more constitutions. In total, the states have held over 230 constitutional conventions, adopted 146 constitutions, and added over 5,000 amendments.
The constitutions of 14 states require that the question of whether to call a constitutional convention be periodically referred to a statewide ballot. Thus most state constitutions have amendment provisions that are vastly less daunting than Article V.
We could seek to make such periodic review possible at the federal level.
Given the extraordinary stasis of our federal Constitution and the great store of plausible reforms extensively tested at the state level, more constitutional experimentation at the federal level seems highly desirable.
Florida’s system of convoking a commission of constitutional revision every 20 years is exemplary. Commission members are appointed by state-wide officials and submit proposed amendments directly to the voters for approval. But even a commission process that referred proposed changes to the states rather than the electorate would be an improvement over current practice which, as a practical matter, amounts to a near ban on any significant constitutional change at all.
This election may provide a political window of opportunity for non-incremental change that could easily include constitutional reform. A realigning election, united government, and the abundance of analogous practices at the state level, could make it plausible that a constitutional commission amendment could overcome the obstacle course created by Amendment V.
If the window of opportunity provided by a moment of syzygy can be leveraged to address the structural barriers to collective action, a new era in American politics will open up, one in which the constraints on effective government action will be much reduced.
I'm not so sure it would be a good idea to completely eliminate the constraints on effective government action/change. But the moment seems to be right (and hopefully will be ripe) to substantively reduce them.

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Bottom-line, Stone has the goods on Trump

Of course, we have no logical proof that Stone has/had any actual evidence of criminal conduct on the part of the person who has the power to commute his prison sentence, but he certainly might. And if he doesn't, he at least CONvinced the conman-in-chief of the United States that he did/does.

I had deduced as much prior to viewing this conversation between Rachel Maddow and Laurence O'Donnell during the hand off from one MSNBC show to the next on Friday evening. Clearly, however, Rachel and Laurence had the same idea.

One old high school buddy of mine has remarked (repeatedly) that the Trump administration is an ONGOING CRIMINAL ENTERPRISE. This friend makes it clear that the ALL CAPS are intentional and warranted. I agree.

Less succinct, Anderson Cooper, on CNN, discusses the situation with reporter Kaitlan Collins then with commentators Jeffrey Toobin and Preet Bharara. This video includes more detail, including background on the crimes for which Stone was convicted.

This, on both videos, is described as what people expect from "Banana Republics" or authoritarian countries. NOT something that seems to ever have been confronted in the United States, even though there have been plenty of scandals in the federal executive branch over the years.

The possibility of Trump actually pardoning Roger Stone was only mentioned in passing by saying that Stone asked for a commutation, NOT a pardon and that he did so because a pardon implies guilt. That seemed dubious and misleading to me. In other words, a shiny object to distract journalists and pundits.

Then I read a Tweet where a person indicated that an impeached president is constitutionally prevented from granting a pardon to a person positioned as Stone is, convicted of crimes related to covering up Trump's guilt. When I went back to try to find that Tweet, I couldn't. But I did find this,
The US Constitution does state,
The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any Subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.
Further explained in the Wikipedia article,
Pardons and reprieves may be granted by the president, except in cases of impeachment. There is currently no universally accepted interpretation of the impeachment exception. Some argue that the president simply cannot use a pardon to stop an officeholder from being impeached, while others suggest that crimes underlying an impeachment cannot be pardoned by the president.
I submit that the reason Stone asked for commutation (now) is because a pardon prior to the election, would have been like hitting the world's largest hornet's nest with the world's largest baseball bat.

I have no doubt that he 's hopin' and wishin' that Trump wins the election and will be able to pardon him shortly thereafter.

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Hoffman & 80 percent of AZ Teachers say NOT SO FAST on re-opening schools

You may have already viewed this video on a previous post -- recorded about two weeks ago -- on the Arizona Eagletarian. Nevertheless, it deserves to be the lede to this post.

Jeff Hester now, as a professor emeritus of astrophysics, works with individuals and groups on strategic thinking.

Here's the latest Arizona covid curve, with data through July 8 (source: Still pretty much the steepest curve for any state in the US.

Arizona Republic education reporter Lily Altavena yesterday reported, Schools chief: Trump school reopening summit doesn't reflect 'Arizona's growing public health crisis'.
President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he would pressure governors to reopen schools in the fall, but Arizona's school superintendent issued a statement afterward saying the state first will need to "get COVID-19 under control."
Kathy Hoffman tweeted a statement on Tuesday in response to a White House event on school reopening where Trump made his remarks. While the president is pushing for schools to reopen, Hoffman expressed skepticism over the idea that Arizona schools are ready.
"Today's discussion at the White House Summit on Safely Reopening America's Schools did not reflect the magnitude or severity of Arizona's growing public health crisis," she wrote.
The governor most recently ordered a delay to the start of in-person classes, until at least Aug. 17.
Hoffman wrote that she would welcome "more aggressive action" from Gov. Doug Ducey to help curb the spread of COVID-19.

Professor Hester makes these points emphatically,  
Instead, the major culprit is close up, person-to-person interactions for extended periods. crowded events, poorly ventilated areas and places where people are talking loudly -- or singing in one famous case -- maximize the risk. 
He goes on to say that "it's hard to think there's a better place for covid to spread than in classrooms." And, "Masks are great if your going to be out and about like going to the store... masks are not intended to protect you from prolonged, continuous exposure to this highly infectious disease."
Significant spread of the disease WILL occur.
How responsible is it to require employees to work in an environment where you know they will be in regular contact with carriers of a deadly disease?
How can you tell people it is safe to send their children to school?
Schools are spreading centers for the community. If schools are opened, there WILL BE significant numbers of people who die because schools are open. And most of those people will not have set foot on a school grounds, at least in a long time.
When you choose to open schools this fall, you are choosing to put at risk members of the community who have no choice in the matter.

Think laboratory petri dishes with the most potent medium used to accelerate the growth of the virus.
Some organisms, termed fastidious organisms, require specialized environments due to complex nutritional requirements. Viruses, for example, are obligate intracellular parasites and require a growth medium containing living cells.
Do you want your children or grandchildren, or their teachers to become that growth medium? 

The school year hasn't begun, but an Arizona teacher has already died from COVID-19, according to a school superintendent.
As President Donald Trump's administration pushes for schools to reopen on time, a small community in eastern Arizona is reeling from the death of a teacher who contracted COVID-19 after she taught summer school virtually while in the same room as two other teachers.
The school district's superintendent, Jeff Gregorich, said three teachers went above and beyond in taking precautions against the spread of the virus while teaching in the same room, but all three contracted COVID-19.
Kim Byrd, who started teaching the Hayden-Winkelman Unified School District in 1982, died.
Gregorich does not believe Arizona schools are ready to open and said Trump does not understand the magnitude of recent remarks insisting on reopening schools.
"The learning can be made up, but the lives will never be brought back," he said.


USAToday reports (updated) today,
WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump put the nation's schools on notice Wednesday that he may cut off their funding if they don't reopen their classrooms this fall.
One day after he promised to put "a lot of pressure" on schools to reopen, Trump served up a new threat on Twitter.
"In Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and many other countries, SCHOOLS ARE OPEN WITH NO PROBLEMS," he wrote. "The Dems think it would be bad for them politically if U.S. schools open before the November Election, but is important for the children & families. May cut off funding if not open!"
First, how (TF) does Trump even know the main reason "the Dems" think about anything? He can't even be honest with himself about what motivates his own decision processes.

The facts include that Germany, Denmark, and Norway have covid under much better control than the US. Sweden, not necessarily so much, as they are still hoping that inaction will generate herd immunity.

By the way, most of the funding for schools is provided by state and local taxes. The federal government provides, for example, Title 1 funding. In other words, Trump is trying to squeeze the most vulnerable families into acquiescing to his desperate schemes.
Title 1 is the nation’s oldest and largest federally funded program, according to the U.S. Department of Education. Annually, it provides over $14 billion to school systems across the country for students at risk of failure and living at or near poverty. In fact, over the course of the 2009-2010 school year, federal funding through this program was used by over 56,000 public schools nationwide in order for struggling students to meet state standards in a variety of subject areas.
Clearly, Trump is thinking of himself. NOT the interests of you, your family or children. Also from the USAToday story linked above,
Trump's push to open schools comes amid a nationwide debate over whether children should return to the classroom amid the coronavirus pandemic. It also echoes Trump's calls in the spring for states to reopen their local economies. Many states with Republican governors did so, but places like Texas and Florida [obviously, AND Arizona, which, stated again, has the STEEPEST curve of any of the United States] are now seeing spikes in COVID cases.
That right there should be evidence enough that what Trump and Ducey would like to do effectively amounts to putting your entire family, actually your entire community [explained in Hester's video above], at further risk for covid infection.



CONTACT: Sheenae Shannon     July 8, 2020     PHONE: 602-407-2308

Eight in 10 Educators Say Schools Should Only Reopen When It's Safe
Phoenix, AZ – July 8, 2020 – Today, the Arizona Education Association (AEA) released the findings of a survey of AEA members, including teachers and education support professionals, around concerns about reopening schools during the COVID-19 health crisis.
The survey of 7,651 educators, conducted during the week of June 30, found eight in 10 respondents agree that schools should reopen only after public health experts determine it is safe to return and with adequate planning and equipment to protect school employees, students, and families from COVID-19.
When asked to agree or disagree on how school districts should proceed with instruction, over 2/3 of respondents opposed returning to a complete traditional school “brick and mortar” learning environment.
  • 68% disagreed to returning to a brick and mortar school
  • 61% agreed to implementing a complete online or distance learning model
  • 58 % agreed to a hybrid model where students attend in person and remotely
While the survey closed on June 30 and Arizona cases are still increasing, six in 10 respondents did not feel their districts were prepared and ready to re-open schools.
  • 73% say there’s not enough staff and resources for school cleaning, food service, and bus schedules.
  • 72% say there’s not enough teachers to re-open schools under CDC guidelines and protocols.
  • 65% say their school district is not prepared and ready to re-open.
  • 57% say their school district has not established clear guidance on social distancing procedures.
  • 57% say their school district has not established clear guidance on health screening procedures.
  • 44% say their school district has not established clear guidance on mandatory face coverings.
The survey reflects real fears from educators about the Coronavirus outbreak in Arizona. Nine in 10 respondents expressed concerns about students and their families contracting COVID-19.
  • 93% are concerned about their colleagues contracting COVID-19
  • 92% are concerned about their students and their families contracting COVID-19
  • 90% are concerned about their family’s health and someone in their household contracting COVID-19
  • 88% are concerned about their own health and contracting COVID-19
While most respondents supported an online or distance learning model rather than traditional brick and mortar school learning environment, just under half of respondents felt schools had enough teachers and resources to implement an online learning model. Many respondents left comments with concerns about how to engage students, meet the needs of students with special needs, and how to ensure students with little or no access to technology will have the opportunity to learn.
If and when school facilities reopen, the following strategies were supported by respondents:
  • 96% Smaller class sizes will be necessary to enforce social distancing.
  • 86% Spread out student lunch periods and enforce social distancing during recess and other activities.
  • 73% Stagger school arrival and/or attendance to enforce social distancing.
93% of respondents said the state should suspend standardized testing until schools return to normal school operations, including requirements on standardized tests like Move on When Reading, the state’s 3rd grade reading retention program.
Educators also voiced other concerns about online instruction, including the need for training, software, and computers. They also questioned who will foot the bill for these additional resources and whether it will be the state, districts, or educators.
View full survey
When push comes to shove (and it seems that's what Trump/Ducey are trying to do), my bets are going to be on families and teachers.

Here's a statement (July 8, 2020) DoubleTalk Doug Ducey sent today to Arizona Republic reporter Lily Altavena, who posted it to twitter

Gotta hand it to the governor. He sure knows how to hire writers who can use plenty of words to say pretty much nothing.