Bernie and Buttigieg are leading. Biden’s fading. Bloomberg’s lurking.
With two contests in the bag, the Democratic presidential field is both thinning and taking shape. The men have been getting a lot of the early headlines, but Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren each remain formidable contenders.
Up next is the Nevada Caucuses on Feb. 22, followed by all-important Super Tuesday on March 3, when 15 states (representing 40% of the U.S. population) will divvy up delegates.
On March 17, Arizona hosts its own don’t-call-it-a-primary Presidential Preference Election. Remember: this is a Democrat-only affair; the Arizona GOP earlier canceled its PPE.
Arizona voters who want to participate in the PPE have until the end of Tuesday, Feb. 18, to file their Democratic registration.
Notably, the Democratic ballot will include 18 candidates – seven of whom have ended their campaigns. Ballots were printed before those candidates (Deval Patrick, Michael Bennet, Andrew Yang, John Delaney, Marianne Willamson, Cory Booker and Julian Castro) formally withdrew their candidacies.
Don’t worry, Henry Hewes fans – you’ll still have a chance to cast a ballot for him.
Veridus Clients in the news
Tampa, FL – AAA Scholarship Foundation today announced the launch of its first-generation Private School Navigator (www.privateschoolnavigator.org).
“We listened to our stakeholders who voiced a strong interest in making sure that families have the opportunity and information they need to make informed choices about the educational-settings that best fit their children’s learning needs. One way we knew we could meet their expectations was by creating a roadmap to help parents navigate the process of selecting and applying to schools,” said Kim Dyson, president and CEO of AAA Scholarship Foundation.
In order to make the Private School Navigator as effective as possible, AAA sought out subject-matter expert, Andrew Campanella, the author of the award-winning book, The School Choice Roadmap: 7 Steps to Finding the Right School for Your Child and president of National School Choice Week, to help develop the resources that will provide scholarship families with practical tools and information on evaluating schools that best meet the needs of their children. Andrew, a strong proponent of all types of school choice, is providing these efforts in his personal capacity and on a volunteer basis.
[…] “We hope everyone is as excited as we are about this progress and we look forward to continuing to help underserved families who are seeking quality educational options for their children,” Dyson said.
Arizona Public Media
Tohono O’odham Chairman Ned Norris Jr. has said he opposes the use of explosives to clear a path for new border wall in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.
The blasting project reportedly went through Monument Hill, an Indigenous burial site on ancestral Tohono O’odham land that’s now within the national monument. The construction work is in preparation for part of the 43-mile section of new bollard wall in Organ Pipe, according to the Arizona Daily Star.
“The Tohono O’odham Nation is adamantly opposed to the construction of the 30-foot, fortified border wall, which would irrevocably harm cultural sites, sacred sites and the environment,” Norris said.
U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva, D-Ariz., said in a video on Twitter Sunday, Feb. 10, Norris told him the O’odham buried Apache fighters on Monument Hill following a battle between the two tribes.
[…] Grijalva and U.S. Reps. Ann Kirkpatrick, D-Ariz., have criticized construction of the new border barriers in Arizona due to the destruction of O’odham sites and environmental damage.
ST. LOUIS, Feb. 11, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Cigna today announced the creation of two new leadership positions within its Health Services business.
Dave Queller, appointed to the role of President, Express Scripts, will lead pharmacy benefit management (PBM) services with additional oversight of supply chain and drug procurement. Queller has led Express Scripts sales and account management organization since he joined Express Scripts in 2014. Before joining Express Scripts, he was senior vice president of National Accounts for Aetna.
Brian Seiz, PharmD, has been named President, Pharmacy, and will lead pharmacy operations, including Express Scripts Home Delivery pharmacy, Accredo specialty pharmacy services, and CuraScript SD. Seiz has held leadership roles at Express Scripts over the past 15 years, and became President of Accredo in 2017. Before joining Express Scripts in 2004, he was an assistant professor of Pharmacy Practice at St. Louis College of Pharmacy.
[…] “Dave and Brian have both played an integral role in positioning Health Services as the partner of choice for health plans, employers, government, and other payers seeking the most value for their investments,” said Tim Wentworth, President, Health Services. “In their new roles they will work together with our talented Health Services leadership team as we deliver more affordability, predictability and simplicity to those we serve.”
Arizona legislators are proposing a new law to block airports across the state from raising fees on ride-sharing services, like Uber and Lyft.
Rep. Travis Grantham, R-Gilbert, says House Bill 2817 rolls back the fees on rides to and from airports to the same levels as at the end of 2017.
That would cut existing fees and block an increase that Phoenix Sky Harbor is planning for ride-sharing services, says Grantham, who is sponsoring the measure.
Phoenix already charges a fee of $2.66 for rideshare companies picking up passengers at the airport.
But the city had planned on a new fee of $4 for picking up passengers as well as $4 for dropping off passengers. The fee would then increase by 25 cents each year, reaching $5 each way in 2024.
Uber threatened to stop operating at Sky Harbor if Phoenix implemented the new fees, however.
Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said last month that the fee increase “very likely” violates a provision of the state Constitution approved by voters as Proposition 126 in 2018 that prohibits new or increased taxes on services.
The city has argued that the tax is actually a fee and that the increase is legal because it is a fee for accessing municipal property — in this case, the curb of the airport.
Lawyers for Phoenix have likened the charge to the sort of fees that other companies pay for operating buses or ground concessions.
The city has put the new fees on hold while that argument plays out in the state Supreme Court.
Grantham’s bill would seem to settle the matter.
[…] Legislators have already preempted the powers of city, towns and counties to regulate ride-sharing services. Grantham’s law would expand on existing law that limits how local governments can regulate the industry.
The bill already has bipartisan backing, with 31 co-sponsors in the House and eight in the Senate.
[…] If airports cannot change fees on transportation, airports may end up passing on operating costs to the customers of restaurants serving food inside terminals and the airlines operating at the gates, he warned.
[…] How you can get involved:
- Find legislation online at apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus
- Find your legislator at azleg.gov/findmylegislator
- Watch live proceedings of the Arizona Legislature at azleg.gov/actv
Veridus is proud to represent a true “who’s who” roster of premier members of the business community. The Veridus Weekly has proven to be an excellent opportunity to highlight key announcements, activities, etc. If you would like to feature something in an upcoming issue, reply to this email or send information to email@example.com.
In other news …
When Arizona voted to ratify the 19th Amendment, four female state lawmakers led the charge.
That’s because women in Arizona won the right to vote eight years before it was granted nationwide.
Wednesday marks 100 years since the Arizona Legislature unanimously voted to ratify the 19th Amendment in a special session on Feb. 12, 1920.
“ARIZONA RATIFIES SUFFRAGE AMENDMENT,” the Feb. 13, 1920, headline of the Arizona Republican read. “Record for rapid work is made by the Legislature in a one-day extra session.”
The resolution to ratify the amendment passed “amid cheers from the crowded gallery,” the article read.
The amendment ultimately was ratified on Aug. 18, 1920, ending a long, hard fight by suffragists to gain the right to vote. Tennessee was the 36th state to vote to ratify, and it passed by just one vote there, which gave the amendment the needed number of states to succeed.
Arizona wasn’t the first state to grant voting rights to women. That honor belongs to Wyoming, which approved women’s suffrage in 1869. Several other states allowed women to vote before the 19th Amendment passed, but the majority did not.
[…] Women in power since suffrage
Women have held positions of political power in Arizona earlier and more frequently than in many other states.
In 1998, five women — Gov. Jane Dee Hull, Secretary of State Betsey Bayless, Attorney General Janet Napolitano, Treasurer Carol Springer and Superintendent of Public Instruction Lisa Graham Keegan — won every major statewide executive office and became known as the “Fab Five.”
The Fab Five still represent the highest number of women to serve in a state’s highest elected offices at any given time, according to the state library.
In 2018, women won five of the seven major statewide contests. And Arizona got its first female United States senator in Kyrsten Sinema that year as well. Soon after, the state got its second when Martha McSally was appointed to the seat left open by the death of John McCain.
Overall, women were elected to 35 of 90 seats in the Legislature in 2018. That’s one less female legislator than the previous election cycle, but Arizona still has one of the highest ratios of female lawmakers in the country. The state currently ranks in the top 10, with Nevada ranking first. The upper chamber of the state Legislature is led by a woman, Senate President Karen Fann, R-Prescott.
The Arizona Capitol Museum will unveil a new exhibit tied to the centennial of women’s suffrage on Feb. 14, Arizona’s statehood day. An event is scheduled to start at 2 p.m., and a presentation on Frances Munds is set for 3 p.m.
Mohave Daily News
PHOENIX (AP) — A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that a 2016 Arizona law barring anyone but a family member or caregiver from returning another person’s early ballot will remain in effect while the state appeals to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The order from the 9th U.S. Court of Appeals means the law banning so-called “ballot harvesting” will remain in force through the March 17 presidential preference election. Only Democrats are voting in that election after the Republican Party chose to forego a primary.
The appeals court last month found the law and and a separate practice of throwing out ballots if a voter went to the wrong precinct have discriminatory effects on minority voters. The ruling also said the ballot harvesting ban was enacted with discriminatory intent.
State Attorney General Mark Brnovich plans to ask the high court to overturn the decision.
The Supreme Court in 2016 refused to block the ballot harvesting law, overturning the 9th Circuit. The case has since had a trial where a judge ruled the law was legal, and a three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit also found the law was properly enacted.
[…] The ballot harvesting law made it a felony to return someone else’s ballot to election officials in most cases. Republicans pushed the legislation through the Legislature over objections of Democrats, arguing that ballot harvesting can lead to election fraud. Republican Gov. Doug Ducey signed it, saying it would ensure a chain of custody between the voter and the ballot box. […]
The House passed legislation Thursday that would remove the deadline to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), a top priority for Democrats.
The measure, sponsored by Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), now heads to the Senate after a 232-183 vote. Five Republicans voted with Democrats in favor of the legislation.
Under the Equal Rights Amendment bill first passed by Congress in 1972, states were given a seven-year deadline to ratify the measure for it to become the 28th amendment to the Constitution. That deadline was later extended to 1982.
Only 35 states had ratified the ERA by 1982, short of the three-fourths needed.
But over the past two years, three more states have approved the amendment, with Virginia becoming the 38th state in January.
Proponents of the measure argue that ratifying the ERA is long overdue and necessary to protect women’s rights.
“Women want to be equal and we want it in the Constitution. I am equal on this House floor with all of my male colleagues, but when I walk out I have fewer rights and protections than them. I rise today because the women of America are done being second-class citizens,” Speier said on the floor ahead of the vote.
“We are done being paid less for our work, done being violated with impunity, done being discriminated against for our pregnancies, done being discriminated against simply because we are women. The ERA is about equality, the ERA is about sisterhood, motherhood, survival, dignity and respect,” she added.
[…] The bill faces an uphill battle in the Republican-controlled upper chamber, where Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has signaled he will not support the measure.