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Action lacking despite opportunities to improve Arizona’s lobbyist reporting system

Action lacking despite opportunities to improve Arizona’s lobbyist reporting system

From lobbyists to lawmakers to advocacy groups, reactions to flaws in Arizona lobbying reports reflect an image of a system that needs to be improved.

Some proposals for how to improve the system have emerged, but any agreement on the solutions, not to mention the political will to enact them, still eludes lawmakers two years after the Fiesta Bowl lobbying scandal roped in dozens of politicians, top bowl officials and a handful of lobbyists.

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Definition of lobbyist hard to pin down

Definition of lobbyist hard to pin down

Even the question of who is a lobbyist is debatable, thanks to wide-ranging exemptions in the laws governing who is required to register as a lobbyist. Those exemptions cover everyone from John Q. Public to, arguably, one of the state’s most powerful public policy groups: The Goldwater Institute.

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Lobbying record analysis methodology

Lobbying record analysis methodology

The Arizona Capitol Times analysis of more than 9,000 lobbyist expenditure records that were filed in 2011 and 2012 included making decisions about what to count, what not to count and how to categorize expenditures. The goal was to evaluate different types of spending and to analyze records showing beneficiaries of the money.

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Pro-life dispute: Conflicting definitions further complicate Brewer’s Medicaid expansion proposal (access required)

Pro-life dispute: Conflicting definitions further complicate Brewer’s Medicaid expansion proposal <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Gov. Jan Brewer forcefully declared that her proposal to expand the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System to hundreds of thousands of new patients is a pro-life plan. As a pro-life governor, she said, she will not sit idly by while people suffer. Since then, opponents of her plan have taken up the pro-life mantle in the Legislature.

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