AUGUST 8, 2012
Speaker Tobin rebuffs partisan attacks by the Arizona Republic
Only the Arizona Republic would allow one of their employees to disrespect public servants, attempt to justify that abuse and arrogantly announce they must be right if they angered people on both sides of some conservative index. To top it off, when the House Director of Communications asked their editor why the sole recipients of the attacks were Republican legislators, he responded, “She (Laurie Roberts) only focused on Republicans because Democrats are not in power and are irrelevant at the Capitol.” I contend that if Democrat legislators are so irrelevant, why is the Republic giving them editorial space or endorsing any of them?
Although Ms. Roberts may not care for many lawmakers, she certainly feels that at least 10 Republicans earned their places on her attack list. I would like to point out to her that most of the legislators that made her list supported additional funding for K-3 education, State Universities, Child Protective Services, the seriously mentally ill, TANF (Temporary Assist for needy families), Tourism, UofA Medical School (Phoenix Campus) and DPS.
They can also take credit for three years of balanced budgets, paying down state debt, improving Arizona’s credit rating, creating a rainy day fund and making Arizona the number one state in America for business startups. The Republican led legislature contributed to the growth of 54,000 non-farm jobs in last 12 months, operated under budget projections for this year by over $300 million, developed tort reform, pension reform, created the Arizona Commerce Authority and can be credited with many other worthwhile and significant achievements.
Ms. Roberts should be ashamed of her rancor, vitriol and overtly left leaning partisanship. She seems to have forgotten that in this session alone, two House Democrats resigned for ethics issues, one is currently under FBI investigation and no Democrats voted to support any of the above achievements I mentioned. That’s not “kooky”, that’s just incompetent.
Honestly, the only group of “Kooks” worth mentioning this session is the management team of the Arizona Republic. They should be maligned for allowing and encouraging this unfettered verbal abuse of elected public servants who are simply serving the people whom elected them. I accept the fact that we don’t all agree on every piece of legislation and that some members have constituents who would like to have their issues heard above others. However, I do not accept legislators being attacked by “journalists” who enjoy the blessing of their management to abuse and disregard their duty to properly inform the public.
Andy Tobin, Speaker
Arizona House of Representatives