Government Accountability

Back-room deals and closed doors are not the stuff of free governments. Our work is making governments more transparent and accountable to citizens.

<p>Back-room deals and closed doors are not the stuff of free governments. Our work is making governments more transparent and accountable to citizens.</p>

Phoenix--The City of Phoenix has paid more than $100,000 to attorneys from the law firm of Fennemore Craig to defend the City in a legal challenge filed by the Goldwater Institute. This taxpayer-funded legal counsel is above and beyond the City of Phoenix's Law Department of 250 full-time attorneys and support staff.

Darcy Olsen, president and CEO of the Goldwater Institute, criticized Phoenix's cavalier use of taxpayer resources, saying "Even Marie Antoinette would find this spending excessive."

An official from India, explaining his country's long embrace of socialism but more recent move toward free-market capitalism, provided a rather frank explanation for the change of heart: The fact is that one of the lessons you learn from history is that history sometimes teaches you the wrong lessons. 


PHOENIX - The Goldwater Institute released its fourth annual Legislative Report Card today. As Arizona's most comprehensive analysis of legislative votes, the Legislative Report Card measures each legislator's votes against the yardstick of the Arizona Constitution.

A new national report card skewers Arizona's economy despite the state's high employment growth and population gains in recent years.

Arizona earned D grades on the economic report card published by the Corporation for Enterprise Development in all three key areas: economic performance, business vitality and development capacity for the future. Those are the same grades Arizona earned from the group last year.

PHOENIX-In an important victory for consumers and free enterprise, the U.S. Supreme Court today struck down laws in New York and Michigan that make it a crime to buy wine directly from vineyards in other states, calling such laws discriminatory and anti-competitive. The decision may render similar Arizona laws unconstitutional.

The Goldwater Institute filed an amicus brief in Granholm v. Heald, now before the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing that wine distribution laws in states such as Arizona and Michigan violate the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

PDF attached.


Arizona wine consumers are getting the short end of the stick when it comes to buying wines they enjoy. A bizarre set of laws makes purchasing many wines impossible, despite the fact that such wines are widely available on the Internet.

In a November 2003 Goldwater Institute policy report, Mark Brnovich made the case for removing restrictions on the purchase and shipment of wine.  As a follow-up to that report, this policy brief demonstrates how practical application of existing laws impedes consumer choice and hampers the free market.

PHOENIX - The Goldwater Institute received today a generous grant of $25,000 to establish the Ronald Reagan Fellows Program. The gift will allow the Goldwater Institute to provide internships to nine Reagan Fellows annually. Mr. Dean Riesen, sponsor of the new program, stated, "I am honored to present the Goldwater Institute with this gift. It is a tribute to President Reagan's faith in future generations and will help those generations carry on the great work he began."

PHOENIX-In a policy report released today, Goldwater Institute constitutional studies director Mark Brnovich urges Arizona to lift its ban prohibiting direct shipment of out-of-state wine to Arizona consumers. In his report, Trading Grapes: The Case for Direct Wine Shipments in Arizona, Brnovich explains how Arizona's ban violates the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution, raises prices, and hurts Arizona's domestic wine industry.