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House panel backs ballot measure on bias

A House committee has endorsed new legislation to have Arizona voters decide whether to amend the state Constitution to generally prohibit discrimination and favorable treatment by state and local government based on sex, race, ethnicity, color and national origin.

The Government Committee’s 6-3 vote on June 10 sends the resolution calling for the ballot measure proposed for the 2010 general election ballot to the full House following a legal review.

The measure is a retooled version of an initiative proposal that failed to qualify for the 2008 ballot. It is championed by former California educator Ward Connerly.

That proposed amendment to the Arizona Constitution was described as being intended to dismantle state and local government preferential programs for women and minorities.

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