Andrea Woodmansee

2008 Legislative Report Card for Arizona's Forty-eighth Legislature, Second Regular Session

Posted on November 26, 2008 | Type: Policy Report | Authors: Andrea Woodmansee, Satya Thallam
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Executive Summary

When they take office, Arizona legislators promise to uphold the U.S. and Arizona Constitutions. The question is whether legislators, individually and collectively, fulfill their duty once in office.

The reports broad scope and intuitive grading scale shine light into what are often dark recesses of a complex legislative process. Such transparency is essential to a free society that depends on a well-informed electorate. The sheer amount of legislation, more than 1,500 bills, memorials, and resolutions introduced this session, makes it difficult for citizens to know whether their representatives are serving the interests of liberty. This report objectively quantifies legislative action in that regard.

Scores for the Forty-eighth Arizona Legislature increased in 2008 to the 50 percent mark. From 2003 to 2005, average scores rose nine points in the House of Representatives and the Senate. From 2005 to 2007, the average House score fell 12 points and the average Senate score fell 13 points. This years increase brings the House within four points of its 2005 high mark, and the Senate within nine points of its high.

The highest-scoring senators were Ron Gould (R-3), Jack Harper (R-4), and Karen Johnson (R-18). The highest-scoring representatives were Andy Biggs (R-22), Russell Pearce (R-18), and Trish Groe (R-3).

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