Political signs lining the streets declare the names and goals of candidates for several offices in the state of Arizona but across the East Valley and Ahwatukee Foothills, there are also signs calling some incumbent Republican legislators “liberal.”
The group behind those signs, Arizona Free Enterprise Club, says the attacks are necessary to educate voters.
“The club believes voters have a right to know where their representatives stand on the issues,” said Scot Mussi, president of Arizona Free Enterprise Club. “The Free Enterprise Club has a long track record of supporting principled free market conservatives for office, and when necessary, opposing big government establishment politicians like Bob Robson.”
Mussi said that in the last two years, state Rep. Robson has voted against pension reform, supported Common Core standards and voted to expand “Obamacare” in Arizona.
Robson said none of those accusations are accurate. He’s in favor of pension reform, voted for Senate Bill 1609 in 2011, which was the basis for several major pension reforms, much of which ended up in court. He also presided over the largest overhaul of the state personnel system in the history of the state and did it without any protests, he said.
The District 18 incumbent said he never backed the Affordable Care Act but did support Gov. Jan Brewer in expanding funding for AHCCCS, the state’s Medicaid program, because it was dictated by the voters. He said he supports standards for schools set at the local level so kids are prepared for graduation.
“People can throw anything against the wall, but people have elected me over and over,” Robson said. “They know me. They know I care. I care about people. We have an obligation. These attacks — people will see right through them.”
Robson said when he looks at any bill, he tries to decide who it will help, who it hurts and who it affects.
The Arizona Free Enterprise Club is also opposing state Sen. Bob Worsley in Mesa and several other incumbents. The club is endorsing Jill Norgaard and John King in Legislative District 18. Robson is endorsed by the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, the Tempe Chamber of Commerce and the Chandler Chamber of Commerce among other groups.
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