Turnover at the Legislature
Anti-LGBTQ+ bills put on hold while lawmakers go on recess
4/11/23 — 4/16/23
Tuesday: SB 1005, which would have barred courts from awarding damages to a government entity when sued for a violation of the parental bill of rights, was vetoed by Governor Hobbs on April 11. Her veto was accompanied by the following statement: “This bill does not protect parents’ rights but merely encourages litigation — no matter how frivolous — without consequence.”
Wednesday: Following an ethics complaint and subsequent investigation, the House of Representatives voted on April 12 to expel Liz Harris (R, Chandler). Given the slim majorities held by the Republicans in both chambers, without Harris’s vote the caucus will be unable to advance any partisan priorities, and a recess has been called until April 25. SB 1026, SB 1028, and SB 1030, three drag bans, and SB 1040, an anti-trans bathroom ban, were scheduled for final floor votes in the house on April 12, but have been put on hold.
Thursday: On April 13, former Senate Minority Leader Raquel Terán (D, Phoenix) announced that she would resign from the Senate to focus on her campaign for U.S. Congressional District 3.
Saturday: After a nature walk for Queer People Fit, the Equality Arizona team headed to downtown Phoenix to take part in a queer and BIPOC healing workshop hosted by a few of our partner organizations.
Sunday: Rounding out the week, we met up with local drag performers and political organizers to promote voter registration at Boycott Bar.
LGBT Lobby Day
9:30 am - 2:00 pm May 2, 2023 | register
With the turbulence at the legislature, we’ve decided to postpone our lobby day with NARAL until May 2. We’ll have a picnic on the lawn and opportunities to speak with legislators about bodily autonomy and LGBTQ+ rights. If you want an inside look at how the legislature works, you should come out and join us at the Capitol!
Location: 1700 W Washington Street, Phoenix
With two high-profile vacancies in the legislature, it’s a good moment to talk about how those are filled. Each state sets its own rules, and in half of the country, they hold a special election to fill the seat, while other states simply allow their Governor to appoint a replacement. In Arizona, our process highlights the importance of the precinct committeeperson, hyperlocal elected officials who form the backbone of our political parties. To replace a legislator, PC’s (as they’re usually called) from the same party and legislative district will vote to nominate three candidates, one of whom will be selected by the local county board of supervisors to fill the seat for the remainder of the term. In Legislative District 13, three candidates have been nominated to replace Liz Harris — Steven Steele, Julie Willoughby, and… Liz Harris.
Media & Events
Civic Advocacy Jam
12:30 pm - 2:00 pm April 22, 2023 | register
Join us on April 22 for another Civic Advocacy Jam! Queer voices deserve a place in the policy-making process that goes beyond the debate over our basic rights, which is why we’ve designed this ongoing series to give you the tools to craft legislation, draft viable bills, and engage in the policy-making process as an active contributor. Can’t be there in person? Join through our Discord livestream instead!
Location: Tempe Public Library
Ask Smart People Smart Questions: School Governance
6:30 pm - 7:30 pm April 26, 2023 | register
With each installment of Ask Smart People Smart Questions, Equality Arizona convenes a panel of experts to talk about the bigger picture of the big issues that affect the LGBTQ+ community in Arizona. With LGBTQ inclusion and support becoming an increasingly incendiary topic in school board meetings across the state, it’s important not to let those debates happen in a vacuum. Over the course of an hour, we’ll cover four big questions about school boards with the goal of adding important context to the conversation.
Location: Tempe Library