Home / 2013 Year in Review / 2013: A year of political quotes to remember

2013: A year of political quotes to remember


“Weigh the evidence and do the math.” — Gov. Jan Brewer on why expanding Medicaid would benefit the state’s economy.

“His house will be his prison.” — U.S. District Court Judge Frederick Martone after sentencing former Democratic lawmaker Ben Arredondo to probation and 18 months of house arrest.

“I don’t make decisions off of what my brother and my relationship is. If I’d done that, my mother would be down here running the state Legislature.’’ — House Speaker Andy Tobin, R-Paulden, on his brother Brian’s former position as president of the Professional Firefighters of Arizona.


“I think the concern is, which comes first, the duck or the egg.” — Gov. Jan Brewer, who asserted that border security needs to come before other immigration issues.

“I can’t say that we’ve had lions and tigers and bears, but we’ve had parrots and ferrets and squirrels, I kid you not. People coming in with birds on their shoulder, ferrets in little slings, squirrels in slings, dogs in purses, dogs in men’s briefcases.” — Roxane Nielsen, owner of Prescott Brewing Company, testifying on a bill that limits service animals to dogs and miniature horses.

“You could do that just as easily with livestock and citrus. You could get a bag of oranges and add a tangerine for sales tax.” — Sen. Steve Farley, D-Tucson, jokingly suggesting alternatives to a bill that would have made gold and silver legal tender in Arizona.


“Jesus had Judas. Republicans have Governor Brewer.” — Maricopa County Republican Party Chairman A.J. LaFaro, testifying about grassroots opposition to the governor’s Medicaid expansion plan.

“Big government is making its way into our bathroom stalls.” — Democratic Rep. Jonathan Larkin of Glendale, speaking against a bill to tie bathroom use in Arizona to birth gender.

“It takes years to develop these kinds of assessments. This is just a little late in the process to suddenly blow it up.” — Rep. Doris Goodale, R-Kingman, questioning opposition to the state’s new Common Core educational standards.

“The human cost of this tragedy can’t be calculated. The financial cost is something we’ve become all too familiar with.’’ — Gov. Jan Brewer, speaking of the financial burden Arizona families face from the costs of uncompensated care for the uninsured.


“It’s hard not to agree with ‘The Daily Show’ when they pointed out it might be safer to be a gun in this state than a child.” — Sen. David Bradley, D-Tucson, on a bill to ban cities from destroying firearms turned over to police.

“I want to scream out, ‘What the hell did I ever do to you, governor? What did Joey Strickland do?’” — Former lawmaker Terri Proud, saying Veterans Services Director Joey Strickland shouldn’t have lost his job over comments Proud made to the Arizona Daily Star.

“I am confident public surveys will show upon my filing that I am a leading candidate for governor.’’ — Disbarred former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas in an email announcing his plans to run for governor.


“It says in the Bible you’re supposed to help the needy, and I don’t see how any of them are trying to help out at all.” — Sen. Steve Pierce, R-Prescott, on opponents of Medicaid expansion who criticize him for his vote in favor of it.

“We have those five registered Republican senators ganging up with 13 Democrats in a historic, traitorous event on the floor of the Arizona Senate last week. It was a mugging.” — A.J. LaFaro, chairman of the Maricopa County Republican Committee, on the Senate’s vote in favor of Medicaid expansion.

“The national media doesn’t know Jan Brewer. They know the caricature. They know the picture on the tarmac. They know SB1070. But that’s about it.” — Matthew Benson, spokesman for Gov. Jan Brewer, saying many people outside of Arizona have a distorted view of the governor.


“People that have mental-health conditions are not predisposed to violence. They just happen to be the ones that kill a lot of people at one time.” — Tony Coulson, a consultant helping the state improve its reporting of weapons background checks.

“They said, ‘Look, you don’t have to take all the heat from the whole Legislature, just do what you got to do.’ So I did and I changed my vote.” — Sen. Steve Pierce, R-Precott, explaining how he cast the deciding vote for the state’s election reform bill.

“They wasted the people’s time. They did nothing, they kept us out of the process, they kept the governor out of the process and lied to us… This was pure obstruction.” — House Minority Whip Bruce Wheeler, D-Tucson, questioning the approach of Medicaid expansion opponents during the weeks leading up to the final vote.

“How you vote on this will define you for the rest of your political career, and perhaps longer.” — House Speaker Pro Tem J.D. Mesnard, R-Chandler, who voted against Medicaid expansion.


“There’s a large herd of sacred cows that roam the Capitol corridors, and if you butcher any one of them, a bill dies.” — Rep. John Kavanagh, R-Fountain Hills, on potential challenges facing an effort to pass a flat tax in Arizona.

“Instead of killing rooftop solar energy, I’m asking APS to be a leader in this state.’’ — Barry Goldwater Jr., urging the utility to change its approach to solar energy.

“In its glory days, it had marble floors.  Now it looks just like any old, beat-up aircraft sitting there.’’ — Marana Regional Airport manager Steve Miller on the presence at the airport of the original Air Force One.


“The rate of deportations and the way it has impacted families in Arizona is going to have repercussions for generations to come. We’re talking about over 15,000 children who have been put into CPS custody because of deportations.” — Juanita Molina, executive director of Border Action Network, on the increase in deportations under the Obama administration.

“Amateur hour is what they’re doing.” — Jaime Molera, Restoring Arizona spokesman, on the United Republican Alliance of Principled Conservatives’ referendum drive against Medicaid expansion.

“If they’re not worried, then why are they paying $350-an-hour lawyers to write letters to the secretary of state?” — URAPC chairwoman Christine Bauserman, responding to Restoring Arizona’s claim that her organization was unlikely to get the signatures it needs to refer Medicaid expansion to the 2014 ballot.

“(Napolitano) leaving, coupled with a pretty hostile Legislature and a new governor who was fairly amenable to the ideas coming out of the Legislature on environmental issues, has led to some really terrible laws getting passed in Arizona.” — Sandy Bahr, executive director of Sierra Club Grand Canyon Chapter on President Obama choosing Gov. Janet Napolitano to lead the Department of Homeland Security.


“Were a watchdog group. We can’t go after every single time that the Legislature breaks the law.’’ — Goldwater Institute attorney Christina Sandefur.  

“One thing we’ve seen with Tom Horne in these Republican primaries is he’s a street fighter and he will do whatever it takes to get the Republican base behind him. I think you still have to consider him the odds-on favorite in the primary.” — Democratic consultant Bill Scheel, on Mark Brnovich’s potential primary challenge to Attorney General Tom Horne.

“There is no way Tom Horne can win a general election as a Republican candidate for attorney general.” — Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery, who is supporting Horne’s possible primary challenger Mark Brnovich.


“She is a living definition of a profile in courage.’’ — former U.S. Attorney for Arizona Paul Charlton, praising Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk for a series of decisions on controversial, high-profile cases.

“I went to court and paid my dues like everyone else. It is a mistake that I very much regret and I am not proud of that night.” — Christine Jones, candidate for governor, on her 2004 DUI arrest.

“Whoever comes out will come out bloody and broke.” — Republican political consultant Kyle Moyer on the 2014 Republican primary for governor.


“This is the most arrogant, inconsiderate group of individuals I have been a part of and I will never set foot in that caucus room again.” — Sen. Leah Landrum Taylor after being ousted as Senate minority leader.  

“The story of the Democratic caucus breaking up at the very height of their political power is proof once again it’s art, not science. Politics doesn’t lend itself to rational behavior.’’ — Consultant Stan Barnes on leadership changes in the Senate.

“There’s 10 or 11 other states that can make their budgets work without an income tax, and I think Arizona needs to be one of them.” — Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate Ken Bennett on his proposal to end the income tax in Arizona.


“DES directors don’t run DES. It’s run by a cabal…of assistant directors.’’ — Liberal blogger Steve Meissner, saying Department of Economic Security Director Clarence Carter should not be fired over thousands of uninvestigated Child Protective Services cases.

“A fence would be helpful, but I don’t think we can do much with two hundred and whatever thousand dollars.” — Rep. J.D. Mesnard of Chandler, saying he has no ideas on how to spend $264,000 designated for a wall at Arizona’s southern border.

“No one should have been aghast.’’ — Department of Economic Security Director Clarence Carter, saying news of 6,554 uninvestigated cases at Child Protective Services should not have come as a surprise to top state officials.

One comment

  1. Let’s hope in the coming year that we get rid of Brewer and John McCain resigns

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