Constitutional Rights

Government can be freedom’s best friend when it protects citizens’ constitutional rights. Here’s how the Goldwater Institute is ensuring your rights are protected.

<p>Government can be freedom’s best friend when it protects citizens’ constitutional rights. Here’s how the Goldwater Institute is ensuring your rights are protected. </p>

In front of more than 300 members of the Tucson community yesterday, Clint Bolick leaned in to his microphone and told the partisan crowd what most of them did not want to hear.

"I'm going to focus my comments on the practical side of what has come to be known as affirmative action," he said. "But what I refer to as preferential treatment."

A criminal case against Phoenix New Times fell apart Friday amid a crush of public outrage and admissions that a special county prosecutor made serious mistakes.

Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas dismissed all charges against the free weekly newspaper less than 24 hours after two New Times owners were arrested for publishing details of a grand-jury subpoena that demanded the Internet records of any person who had visited the newspaper's Web site since 2004.

Normally the Arizona Federation of Taxpayers comments on the policy positions of Arizona legislators, not federal judges.

But through his judicial decisions in recent years, U.S. District Judge Raner Collins has effectively appointed himself to the Arizona Legislature.

Indeed, Judge Collins has become a very powerful legislator, able to single-handedly mandate an appropriation of $150 million - more than 1 percent of the state's General Fund budget - in additional spending on English-language learner (ELL) programs.

Darcy A. Olsen
Title: President and CEO
Organization: Goldwater Institute

The Republican Party continues to abandon small-government conservatism at its peril

A forum on direct wine shipping Tuesday at the Goldwater Institute in Phoenix was anything but a dry recitation of policy.

After a panel discussion, several supporters of direct shipment delivered animated comments and grievances to panelist Karen Gravois of the Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America, the only speaker not in favor of direct shipping.

"How do you justify the economic discrimination between what's available in state and what's available out of state?" asked Larry Winer of the Arizona State University law school.

Researchers Offering Tips to Aid Voters

How do some of Arizona's leading think tanks judge political candidates? What do they think are the Top 10 qualities or characteristics that politicians should carry in their resume?

The Supreme Court has had a working conservative majority for over a quarter-century, cemented by the appointments of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito. In that time, we've witnessed evolution, not revolution, with few precedents overturned.

Indeed, the Court under Chief Justice William Rehnquist strengthened the jurisprudential foundation of Roe v. Wade, even as it expanded the permissible scope of abortion restrictions. And it re-affirmed the Miranda decision, a prime example of Warren-era judicial legislation.

Judicial activism has become a universal pejorative, a rare point of agreement between red and blue America. Conservatives and liberals alike condemn courts for overturning policy decisions they support. Both sides would reduce the judiciary's constitutional scrutiny of the actions of other branches of government -- a role it exercises not too much but far too little.

Proposition 200 would bribe people uninterested in voting to vote anyway by giving them a chance in a $1 million lottery. The actual value of the ticket would be about 50 cents, hardly enough to attract many new voters. But for gamblers who dream of taking home the big jackpot, this may do the trick.

Dr. Mark Osterloh, the author of Prop. 200, thinks Arizonans need a financial inducement to vote. What could be a greater insult to our American values and liberties?