Journalists’ Roundtable: 3-19-21: Election audit, voucher expansion

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This week the Journalists’ Roundtable discussed the state senate’s efforts to audit Maricopa County votes from the last election and more. Our guests are Luige del Puerto from the Arizona Capitol Times and Steve Goldstein of KJZZ.

This weeks Journalists’ Roundtable covered:

  • AZ Senate vs. Maricopa County
  • Voucher Expansion
  • Lopez Announces for Governor
  • Biggs Opposed Capitol PD Honor

AZ Senate VS. Maricopa County 

Luige del Puerto: “Well, that’s the plan all along according to Senate president Karen Fans so uh, what she has envisioned or what she wants to do is a hand count of all 2.1 million ballots uh in her mind, it would take 100 volunteers to do this um and it would take about three weeks to hand count all of these ballots. Um we did not previously know about this plan although the president insisted that this is one of the things she’s been envisioning for in this ongoing this Multi months saga now between the feud if you will between the Maricopa county and the state senate.”

Steve Goldstein: “Well, and Ted there is a lot to it, if I may just veer off slightly one thing that I found so interesting about this is of course Luige referenced this is this fight between the senate and the supervisors as to first of all where the ballots are even going to be, are the 2.1 million ballots going to stay in county hands or are they going to move over to the Senate and there hasn’t been a plan over that. Interesting I hate to mention Twitter on your show Ted but really interesting comments by Senator Paul Boyer on Twitter to former senator Eddie Farnsworth Who of course was one of the real zellets in making this happen and it was something along the lines like how’s that recount going now interesting to have a sitting senator who was the one senator who didn’t vote to possibly hold the supervisors in contempt making comments like this. So it seems, it seems a little convoluted at this point.”

Voucher Expansion 
Steve Goldstein: “Yeah Ted, and voters rejected this soundly with the whole save our schools grassroots movement there um again sort of odd situation not a surprise when it comes to certain aspects the legislature because Republicans certainly in the legislature at least it may not apply to the voting public at large, large fans of the ESA voucher expansion they want to do more and this latest addition it’s very likely to get to the governors desk and it would expand the um type of title I schools the eligibility for students in title I schools which would then put the eligibility, we’re talking about over a million students were talking about at least tripling the number of who would be eligible for the ESA expansion and that has of course has folks on the other side saying wait a second we’re not funding public schools adequately so now we’re going to give even more money for ESA expansion, so again we’re seeing those same dividing lines between the left and the right on this issue.”
Luige del Puerto: “Yeah it’s quite interesting because you mentioned Paul Boyer at the very start here and there was some question to whether his proposal because he introduced it, would even go further as you know Paul Boyer voted against his part interest in some of the high profile proposals in the state legislature and there was a point there where the Senate wanted to recall this bill from the house after already having passed it and send it over to the other chamber. This bill is moving as Steve mentioned um couple of things here just to know would get rid of provisioning the original bill that would have made any student attending a low income school eligible. So now it’s limited to students receiving free or reduced price lunches and the children of military veterans as well. It’s current inclination if you will would mean that it would be made available to 55% of Arizona students.”

Luige del Puerto, Arizona Capitol Times
Steve Goldstein, KJZZ

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