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Arizona Dems have, at times, bucked leadership (access required)

As Democratic leaders in the House scramble to corral the votes necessary to pass health care legislation, the party may not be able to rely on three Democrats from Arizona. That's because Reps. Harry Mitchell, Gabrielle Giffords and Ann Kirkpatrick have all showed independent streaks during their first several hundred votes in office, according to a review of their voting records.

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Gray, Barto file motion to intervene in federal abortion suit (access required)

Two lawmakers, along with several conservative groups, filed a motion Sept. 22 to intervene as defendants in a federal lawsuit that was filed to challenge a new state law to restrict abortions. Sen. Linda Gray, a Republican from Glendale and Rep. Nancy Barto, a Republican from Phoenix, argued that they have a right to intervene because the lawsuit could invalidate their votes.

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Ariz. health aide says docs decide on vaccinations

Young children and other specific populations will be identified as top priorities when Arizona starts distributing swine flu vaccine next month. But the state's health director said Sept. 15 it will be up to physicians and other front-line providers to make choices on who gets the shots and sprays first.

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Affordable universal health coverage achievable

We all want the same thing: protection from catastrophic illness and the security of affordable health coverage in the future. To their credit, Americans have read the bills working their way through Congress and are objecting to the health care rationing and control over their health care quality and decisions.

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Arizona delegation responds to Obama health care speech

President Obama on Sept. 9 offered what could be his administration's last direct attempt to convince Americans to rally around his health care plan, offering an outline Democrats found encouraging. But even as Democrats hope for a new wind on health care, Republicans were largely unswayed, with Arizona Rep. Trent Franks calling the address "divorced from reality completely."

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