Free Enterprise Club Responds to ASU Cancelling Event Featuring Congressman Andy Biggs and Jason Chaffetz

Free Enterprise Club Responds to ASU Cancelling Event Featuring Congressman Andy Biggs and Jason Chaffetz

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Scot Mussi (480) 221-3292

Phoenix, AZ – The Arizona Free Enterprise Club has released the following statement in response to the decision by ASU and Michael Crow to cancel a fundraising event featuring Congressman Andy Biggs and former Congressman Jason Chaffetz to benefit the Political History and Leadership (PHL) program at ASU:

It is outrageous that Michael Crow and ASU would cancel an ASU Foundation Fundraiser because they oppose the views and philosophy of the featured speakers attending the event. It is becoming clear that woke cancel culture has taken over every office at the University,” said Scot Mussi, President of the Arizona Free Enterprise Club.

The purpose of the event, scheduled for February 17th at the Desert Botanical Garden, was to raise money for the ASU Foundation in support of PHL, a very successful program within ASU’s history department. Approximately 20% of in-person students in the history program at ASU are attending classes through PHL.

“ASU doesn’t have a problem with liberal activists and public officials appearing at the school for various events. It is well known that Democrat politicians, including US Senator Kyrsten Sinema, have in the past or currently work for the University at taxpayer expense. It only becomes a problem when the speaker is a conservative,” Scot Mussi continued. “If Michael Crow is going to surrender to the ‘cancel culture’ mob, then he is no longer fit to be ASU President and should resign.”

For more information about the Arizona Free Enterprise Club, visit www.azfree.org. Follow us on twitter @azfec. Email us at info@azfree.org.

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Race-Based Rationing of COVID Treatments Is Unethical and Should Be Banned

Race-Based Rationing of COVID Treatments Is Unethical and Should Be Banned

Democrats love to talk about the need of establishing a “universal” health care system that provides everyone with the same quality of care. That was the major theme pushed by the left and the media when Obamacare was signed into law in 2010.

We always knew that it was propaganda and that a government-run healthcare system would result in worse care for everyone. What we didn’t know is that the left doesn’t even support this claim. They do like the idea of providing different care to different people, so long as it promotes their radical, race-based social justice agenda.

Rationing COVID treatments based on race

To kick off the new year, health officials in Democrat-run New York made the call to prioritize non-whites as part of their criteria to decide who is eligible to receive monoclonal antibodies. And while white people can still receive the treatments, they’ll have to show that they have medical conditions that increase their risk for severe illness. Non-white patients, however, are automatically eligible.

But the Empire State wasn’t the only one to climb aboard the racism train. Minnesota’s state health department is actually using a scoring system based on certain risk factors to determine eligibility. And if you’re black, Indigenous, or a person of color, there’s good news. You automatically get two points. Sorry, white people. Even if you are 55 years and older with hypertension (which makes you a greater COVID risk), it’s just one point for you.

Of course, liberals are quick to say that all of this is being done in the name of “racial progress.” So, where exactly did states like New York and Minnesota get these ideas from? The Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

That’s right. The FDA authorized emergency use of monoclonal antibodies and oral antivirals for “high risk” patients. And it included race as one of those factors. (Just imagine what this could look like if the federal government had complete control over our health care.)

Not only does this violate the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but it also violates the Democrat-beloved Obamacare, which guarantees equal treatment for all races in health care. With the Left all about discrimination and segregation these days, it’s time for lawmakers to do something.

Arizona’s legislature needs to take clear action

The reality is that monoclonal antibodies are an effective treatment for COVID-19, and they could potentially be life-saving. No one should be denied this treatment because of their skin color. But instead of looking for ways to make them even more accessible, Democrats would rather play politics.  

That’s why, with the Arizona legislature back in session, it’s critical that our state’s lawmakers take clear action by banning the practice of rationing COVID treatments based on race. These sorts of policies should have no place in our state. And they should have no place in America. Our country was founded on the inherent and equal dignity of every single person. That’s what our elected leaders should be seeking to protect. And if they don’t do that this time, it could be a matter of life or death.

Help Protect Freedom in Arizona by Joining Our Grassroots Network

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Governor Ducey Takes Action to Protect Students and Parents from More School Shutdowns

Governor Ducey Takes Action to Protect Students and Parents from More School Shutdowns

By now, you’re probably fed up with talking about school shutdowns. And frankly, we’re getting fed up with fighting the left on this issue. But leave it to the teachers’ unions and RedforEd to call for more school shutdowns right before students returned from their winter break.

Once again, they’d rather play politics than truly trust the science. After all, we’ve been dealing with this pandemic for almost two years and with that comes data. So, what do we know? A microscopic 0.2 percent of deaths from COVID-19 have come from individuals under the age of 20 in Arizona. At the time this article was written, the total number of reported COVID fatalities for that age range was 54.

While death of any sort is heartbreaking, these numbers prove that COVID is no more dangerous for children than the seasonal flu. But the teachers’ unions and RedforEd just can’t help themselves—because, as usual, it’s always about them.

A Call for More Shutdowns

Leading the charge for a return to remote learning this time around are Rebecca Garelli and Joe Thomas, both of whom were key players in the establishment of RedforEd. Garelli, who relocated to Arizona after being awarded a position working for Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman, has been all over Twitter calling for a minimum two-week pause for in-person learning across the nation.

Two weeks to stop the spread…where have we heard that before? It will probably work out just as well as it did the first time, right?

The reality is that the teachers’ unions want two weeks now, then two more weeks, and then two more…It never stops. You would think they would’ve learned their lesson after some of the backlash they’ve received. But perhaps they forgot about how some school districts paid a pretty hefty price last year after teachers threatened to strike and staged other publicity stunts like “sick outs.” And maybe they’re in denial about this past November’s election when most of the bonds and overrides affecting Arizona school districts in suburban areas failed.

But RedforEd and the teachers’ unions keep doubling down on their behavior. That’s why it’s critical to take every race in this next election seriously—from Governor to U.S. Senate to your local school board. But we can’t wait around for 11 months to do something. And that’s why Governor Ducey’s move earlier this week to protect parents and students from more school shutdowns is essential.

Governor Ducey’s Preemptive Action

Arizona’s governor didn’t waste any time responding to the demand from teachers’ unions to return to remote learning. As students headed back to school on Monday following their winter break, Governor Ducey made it clear that in-person learning will continue in Arizona.

But then he followed that up with action.

On Tuesday, the governor announced that he is making up to $7,000 available for families who may face financial or educational barriers due to unexpected school closures. With this new program, if a school closes for even one day, students and families who meet the income requirements will have access to funds for childcare, school-coordinated transportation, online tutoring, and school tuition.

That’s a step in the right direction. And it’s one everyone should be able to get behind. Children have suffered so much during this pandemic. They’ve lost educational opportunities, athletic opportunities, social engagements, and more. Even The New York Times acknowledged the damage done to kids over the past two years. Now, students deserve leaders who will put them first. And that begins with giving them and their parents the freedom to choose in-person learning.

Help Protect Freedom in Arizona by Joining Our Grassroots Network

Arizona needs to have a unified voice promoting economic freedom and prosperity, and the Free Enterprise Club is committed to making that happen. But we can’t do it alone. We need YOU!

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This Past Year Proves We Cannot Ignore School Board Elections

This Past Year Proves We Cannot Ignore School Board Elections

For a long time, school board elections have been one of the easiest to ignore. Maybe it’s because the names on the ballot don’t stand out as much as the candidates for President, Governor, or U.S. Senate. Maybe it’s because people are too busy to research the candidates. Or maybe it’s because voters who don’t have kids—or whose kids are not in public school—don’t see how school board elections can affect them.

But if 2021 has taught us anything, it’s that even the smallest election has consequences. And nowhere has that been more obvious than with the leftist agendas that have taken over Arizona’s school districts this past year.

By now, you’ve probably already heard about attempts from various school districts throughout the state to adopt Marxist Critical Race Theory programs in their schools. But this effort to indoctrinate our children by teaching them that their moral character is determined by their race is only one of the many issues.

In Scottsdale Unified School District (SUSD), students are allowed and even encouraged to replace their “deadname”—the birth name that individuals reject upon transitioning genders—with their preferred name on their school ID. Behind this effort to sexualize children is a group named the Gender & Sexualities Alliance. And parents are right to be alarmed. But when they raised their concerns about such clubs being on campuses as young as middle school, SUSD Superintendent Dr. Scott Menzel labeled their criticism as “targeted attacks” and bullying.

And yes, this is the same school district where the now-former Governing Board President Jann-Michael Greenburg was connected to a secret dossier on parents and other political opposition.

But Scottsdale isn’t the only school district that appears to be ok with sexualizing children. In Paradise Valley Unified School District (PVUSD), two English teachers assigned a book containing porn and sexually explicit material as part of an AP 11th grade summer reading list. And the book was also available for any student to read in the school’s library.

Then, there’s Chandler Unified School District (CUSD) where some teachers have been pushing for a program called “Windows, Mirrors, and Sliding Glass Doors.” This curriculum is just a rebranded version of social-emotional learning, which is just a guise for other controversial curriculums like Critical Race Theory and Comprehensive Sex Education.

It’s amazing—but not surprising—to see the efforts they’ll go through to hide this stuff.

But this isn’t the only controversy CUSD has faced this year. The school district also appeared to coordinate with police to spy on and arrest unmasked parents.

Sadly, we’re still not done. Back in July, Higley Unified School District’s former superintendent Dr. Denise Birdwell was indicted on 18 felony counts related to procurement fraud, misuse of public monies, fraudulent schemes and practices, and more.

And finally let’s not forget about all the hypocrisy surrounding COVID. In September, Arizona School Boards Association (ASBA) members were seen maskless at a conference while suing for K-12 mask mandates. And they followed that up with another conference earlier this month where multiple attendees did not wear masks despite the conference having a mask mandate.

This is just a small sampling of what’s been going on in our school district’s this past year. Are you tired of it yet?

Thankfully, there is hope. More and more parents have been speaking up, despite being labeled as “domestic terrorists.” And some school districts are starting to respond.

CUSD voted to leave the National School Boards Association back in October, and Dysart Unified School District voted to leave the ASBA earlier this month.

Perhaps most telling was this past November’s elections. Most of the bonds and overrides affecting Arizona school districts in suburban areas failed. (In many cases, they weren’t even close.) And in Virginia, Republican candidate Glenn Youngkin won the race for Governor with many believing that education was the central issue.

We can’t allow this momentum to subside.

With the close of this year just days away, we’re about to head into 2022 where there will be plenty of contentious elections across our state. And while we should focus on the important races for Governor, U.S. Senate, and more, we can’t afford to ignore what’s happening in our schools.

Start doing your research as soon as possible to see who’s running for school boards in your area—and what they stand for. Students and parents need school board members who will put them first. And remember, whether or not you have kids, what happens in our schools not only affects our state today, but it can impact your future.

Help Protect Freedom in Arizona by Joining Our Grassroots Network

Arizona needs to have a unified voice promoting economic freedom and prosperity, and the Free Enterprise Club is committed to making that happen. But we can’t do it alone. We need YOU!

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The Evidence Shows That Arizona Is Funding Education at Historic Levels

The Evidence Shows That Arizona Is Funding Education at Historic Levels

If you have been listening to the left and their friends in the media over the last several years, you might be under the impression that conservatives in the legislature have chronically underfunded K-12 education. But this couldn’t be further from the truth, and the truly historic levels of education funding actually threatens their soak the rich tax hike (Prop 208).

The reason we know K-12 is funded at historic levels is because there is a constitutional expenditure limit. Next year, we’re on track to blast above it. By billions.

Their pivot has been to attack the expenditure limit, as opposed to acknowledging how much the state is spending. But taxpayers should be thankful for this constitutional protection. It isn’t outdated, and it isn’t holding our schools back.

In 1980, Arizona voters approved the limit. It isn’t some subjective cap that legislators can manipulate to cover up how much or how little is being spent. It’s an objective formula that bean counters at the Department of Revenue use to calculate the limit every year. Funding levels are calculated annually to include student population, plus inflation, plus an additional 10% is added on top. For this year, that amounts to just over $6 billion. 

Oh, and did we mention that this funding cap doesn’t include certain revenue streams, as many sources of funding are exempt from the K-12 spending limitation? For example, all of the Covid $$ received from the federal government is exempt from the constitutional cap. The result is that the actual amount spent on K-12 in FY 2022 is $16.2 billion, or $3.4 billion more than the entire state budget.

10-year per pupil spending chart

Even adjusted for inflation, this amounts to the highest per pupil spending in state history.

The constitutional spending cap does allow for a one-time override, but that requires a vote of two thirds of the members of the legislature. That means we can expect early next year to see the education spending lobby, democrats, and the media beating the same K-12 drum that $14,326 per student is not enough.

They will tell the public that conservatives have chronically underfunded education and that they must override the expenditure limit or schools will be broke. But conservative lawmakers should stand firm, push back on the misinformation, and tell voters that the only reason we are having this debate is because the legislature has continued to pump record amounts of money into schools.

The expenditure limit ensures K-12 funding grows at a contained and reasonable rate, provides an objective measure on how much we spend, and, importantly, protects the pockets of taxpayers from being robbed to flood schools with cash. Arizona taxpayers should be grateful that this constitutional protection exists and should tell lawmakers to say no to any reckless expenditure override.

Help Protect Freedom in Arizona by Joining Our Grassroots Network

Arizona needs to have a unified voice promoting economic freedom and prosperity, and the Free Enterprise Club is committed to making that happen. But we can’t do it alone. We need YOU!

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Democrats Are Using the ‘Latino Coalition’ to Manipulate Redistricting Maps

Democrats Are Using the ‘Latino Coalition’ to Manipulate Redistricting Maps

The final push on Arizona’s redistricting maps is upon us. And for the most part, things are getting better. The maps are reflecting the community input that the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission has received over the past three months, and that’s important. After all, this process only takes place every 10 years, so whatever maps are drawn will determine your district for the next decade.

On top of that, the maps are also close to fitting the criteria that the commission must follow in the Arizona Constitution. This is good. And this is the direction the maps should be headed.

So, naturally, the Democrats are trying everything they can to game the system. And this time they are doing it through a group called the Arizona Latino Coalition for Fair Redistricting.

At first glance, that name sounds harmless enough, right? Fair redistricting is certainly something we all want. But let’s take a quick look at some of the leaders and advisors that make up this group that’s so concerned with fairness:

    • Martin Quezada, Democrat State Senator
    • Pete Rios, retired Democrat State Senator and County Supervisor
    • DJ Quinlan, past Chairman of the State Democrat Party
    • Adelita Grijalva, Democrat County Supervisor and daughter of Democrat Congressman Raul Grijalva
    • Mary Rose Wilcox, retired Democrat County Supervisor
    • Steve Gallardo, Democrat County Supervisor

Did you notice a common theme? They’re all Democrats! How’s that for fairness?

DJ Quinlan, who worked closely with the commission’s Democratic members in 2011, appears to be giving strategic advice to the Latino Coalition while Steve Gallardo and Adelita Grijalva serve as the group’s statewide co-chairs. In addition, the group’s five regional co-chairs are…you guessed it…Democrats!

If the goal of the Latino Coalition were to represent the greater Latino community, you would think that this group would reach across the political and ideological spectrum. After all, last time we checked, not every Latino was a Democrat.

But that’s not the goal of the Latino Coalition. Instead, they are 100% focused on protecting their party’s interests, and in particular, that includes manipulating the redistricting maps.

Just look at what happened early on in the process. The Latino Coalition had initially advocated for creating an eighth legislative district with a population made up of mainly Hispanics. And yet they dropped the proposal—mostly because they feared that spreading Hispanic population centers among eight districts would have benefited conservative candidates.

And then there’s the group’s involvement in the Congressional district maps. Under the Voting Rights Act, these maps must have at least two majority Latino districts.

Some of the maps submitted to the commission were able to do this while splitting up some predominantly Hispanic population centers or aligning smaller Hispanic communities with areas that were in closer proximity and traditionally Republican.

But it didn’t take long before those maps were discarded. Why? Because the Democrats didn’t want to end up in a more competitive race.

As the redistricting commission heads into the final stretch of determining our state’s Congressional and Legislative maps for the next 10 years, they must put aside partisan politics. And they must not only keep in mind the interests all Latinos, but they must keep in mind what’s best for our entire state.

That’s the kind of fairness the people of Arizona deserve, and if the Latino Coalition were true to its name, that’s the kind of fairness they would be standing for.

Help Protect Freedom in Arizona by Joining Our Grassroots Network

Arizona needs to have a unified voice promoting economic freedom and prosperity, and the Free Enterprise Club is committed to making that happen. But we can’t do it alone. We need YOU!

Join our FREE Grassroots Action List to stay up to date on the latest battles against big government and how YOU can help influence crucial bills at the Arizona State Legislature.