Here and Now Archive

Chuck Coughlin, advisor to Governor Jan Brewer, discussed why Medicaid expansion in Arizona makes sense economically and morally.

Coughlin also talked about Brewer's governing style and why the world of politics often gets dirty.

State budget talks, at least publicly, seemed to be stuck in a rut. That changed earlier this week when Senate leaders introduced a series of budget bills.Jim Small of The Arizona Capitol Times explained why Senate President Andy Biggs is allowing the budget bills to move forward and how impactful Governor Jan Brewer's proposed Medicaid expansion has been on the legislative session.

This week marks 50 years since Arizona won the U.S. Supreme Court case, Arizona v. California, that helped federal legislation in creating the Central Arizona Project.Historian Jack August, author of "Dividing Western Waters," discussed the case and the effect it had on dramatically increasing Arizona's population.

The latest edition of The New Yorker magazine has led to a lot of debate about same sex marriage and childhood icons. It features Bert and Ernie of Sesame Street cuddling on the couch watching the Supreme Court on television, a reference to the high court overturning the Defense of Marriage Act.

"Mister Magazine" Samir Husni, who directs the Magazine Innovation Center at the University of Mississippi's School of Journalism, and Phoenix Magazine Editor-in-Chief Keridwen Cornelius, talked about the impact of magazine covers in generating buzz and sales.

Tuesday's announcement that the U.S. Department of Justice and several attorneys general including Arizona's Tom Horne were suing to block the proposed merger between American Airlines and Tempe-based US Airways was a huge surprise to most observers. American was on the cusp of emerging from bankruptcy, and the two airlines had hoped to complete their partnership sometime next month.

Whenever we have questions about the airline industry and US Airways' position in that industry, we turn to Holly Hegeman, the founder of PlaneBusiness Banter. You can follow her on Twitter at @PlaneBusiness.

So how does the DOJ lawsuit potentially affect consumers? Will travelers’ costs remain predictable?

Charlie Leocha is director of the washington DC-based Consumer Travel Alliance.

The so-called Gang of Eight bipartisan senators have released their proposed immigration reform legislation. Clint Bolick, co-author of "Immigration Wars: Forging an American Solution" with former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, said the proposal sounds fair and effective in making modifications to how legal and undocumented immigration is handled.

Arnie Bermudez, former "Tucson Citizen" editorial cartoonist and contributor to FoxNewsLatino.com, also gave his perspective. Bermudez grew up in Yuma before moving to Tucson.

Arizona's public schools continue trying to climb back from deep cuts to their budgets over the past several years. Their planning for the next fiscal year has not been helped by delayed state budget talks at the Capitol.

Chuck Essigs, Director of Governmental Relations for the Arizona Association of School Business Officials, explained the challenges districts are facing.

Dr. David Peterson, Superintendent of the Scottsdale Unified School District, discussed the nearly $10 million in cuts his district is going to have to make.

The Valley's rapid growth likely wouldn't have been possible without water from the Colorado River via the Central Arizona Project. But the Southwest's ongoing drought has some concerned about whether Arizona will have enough water for the future.

Kathryn Sorensen, Water Resources Director for the City of Mesa, and Robert Glennon, Professor of Law and Public Policy at the U of A and author of " Unquenchable: America's Water Crisis and What to Do About It," discuss the important planning steps Arizona has taken, and whether the public, through conservation, could be doing more to help.

The anticipated merger of American Airlines and Tempe-based U.S. Airways has many in the Valley worried about the effect on the economy, considering the combined airline is going to be headquartered in Dallas, but analyst Holly Hegeman said Phoenix may be used as a hub to the West Coast, a significant benefit to the Valley.

Governor Jan Brewer continues her efforts to expand Medicaid in Arizona, but many conservatives are critical — saying the Governor is selling out principles in exchange for federal money. Steve Goldstein gets different perspectives on the proposed expansion from Mary K. Reinhart of the Arizona Republic, Maricopa County GOP Chair A.J. LaFaro, and Suzanne Pfister of Dignity Health Arizona.

David Neiwert explores the Minuteman movement, how it was covered by the media and whether it impacted U.S. border security.

Neiwert's new book is called "And Hell Followed with Her: Crossing the Dark Side of the American Border."

The latest proposed owner of the Phoenix Coyotes was quickly rejected by the National Hockey League, leaving the organization with another uncertain offseason. Paul Giblin of The Arizona Republic gave an update on the city of Glendale's involvement in the ownership of the Coyotes and the management of Jobing.com Arena.

Ken Campbell of The Hockey News talked about the NHL's views on the Valley as a locale for hockey. In Campbell's words, it's been an "unequivocal failure."

There is a short list of qualifications to be a justice of the peace in Arizona. You must be a registered voter in the state. You must reside in the justice court precinct. You must understand the English language.

Some people think justices of the peace should also be required to have law degrees. Doris Marie Provine, ASU Professor Emerita, has done extensive research on the subject and said the law degree will no't make someone a good justice of the peace.

Arizona Republic columnist Bob Robb said the law degree should be a requirement. He also believes the process of electing JPs is too political.

The Glendale City Council has approved an agreement for the management of Jobing.com Arena, freeing up the National Hockey League to approve a new Phoenix Coyotes ownership group.One of the Coyotes' new owners, Anthony LeBlanc, discussed why he thinks the Valley will be a successful market for professional hockey. Also, longtime Coyotes' broadcaster Todd Walsh said he expects the settled ownership situation to help the team excel on the ice.

Former Surgeon General Richard Carmona says he won't be running for Governor in Arizona, even after a competitive Senate campaign last November.

Democratic strategist Barry Dill tells Steve Goldstein why Carmona won't be a candidate and why other ambitious Democrats may be breathing a sigh of relief.

Scottsdale's plans for the Desert Discovery Center calls for the project to have informative and artistic exhibits on the Sonoran Desert. There are many supporters, but funding and location continue to be challenges.

Melinda Gulick of the Desert Discovery Center Task Force and Scottsdale Councilman Guy Phillips discuss the goals of the center and whether it should be in north Scottsdale's McDowell Sonoran Preserve or at Reata Pass/Greasewood Flats.

Arizona's economic recovery continues to be slow, but Dennis Hoffman of Arizona State University's W.P. Carey School of Business says there are a number of positive signs.Hoffman says increasing consumer confidence should improve the state's condition.

Phoenix native Jon Talton was an Arizona Republic columnist for seven years. He has since moved to the Pacific Northwest, where he writes for The Seattle Times and blogs often about Phoenix at RogueColumnist.com.Talton talked with Steve Goldstein about ways for Phoenix to improve its economy and strengthen its efforts to deal with climate change. Talton also discussed writing fiction, which continues with his latest Arizona-based mystery "The Night Detectives."

Summer won't officially arrive for another week, but the Valley is already facing excessive heat warnings.Meteorologist and Channel 12 storm chaser Matthew Pace said we will have our typically hot summer days, and he is predicting an average monsoon season of blowing dust and thunderstorms.

Scientists who study the Southwest drought said the extremely dry conditions will likely increase the danger of catastrophic wildfires. University of Arizona Climate Science Professor Gregg Garfin talked about whether the conditions are expected to get worse and how government planning should take that into account.

Grand Canyon University is investing a lot of money and energy into moving its athletic programs into Division I, the highest level of competition in the NCAA.

Brad Wolverton of The Chronicle of Higher Education talks to Steve Goldstein about the challenges GCU will face— and whether its for-profit status will impact how it's viewed by the NCAA.

A new poll from the Phoenix-based Behavior Research Center shows Senator John McCain's job approval ratings in Arizona are at their lowest level in more than two decades.Behavior Research Center President and CEO Jim Haynes interprets the numbers in a conversation with Steve Goldstein.

Arizona has been attracting more attention from Wall Street recently. Last month, two companies based in the state had Initial Public Offerings or IPOs. S. Trevis Certo of Arizona State University's W.P. Carey School of Business explained what makes for a successful IPO and how connected IPOs are to current economic conditions.

Recently retired Sen. Jon Kyl, who was one of the leaders in the push for immigration reform in 2007, says the bipartisan "Gang of Eight" is in a much better position to pass reform this year.Kyl said climate for reform is much friendlier. He also said the Gang of Eight's process has been much more open.

Dr. Michael Desmond, Harvard University Sociology Professor and former wildland firefighter in Northern Arizona, considers the vital role firefighters play in protecting the land. He also reflects on the inherent danger in the job and his sadness at the loss of 19 lives in the Yarnell Hill Fire.

Housing prices in the Valley are up and foreclosures are down. How long will it be until the area sees a stable housing market?The Arizona Republic's Catherine Reagor, realtor John Wake and attorney Robert Nagle discuss what they're looking for in the recovering market and what buyers and sellers should be wary of.

The Arizona Cardinals head into Thursday's National Football League draft with new Head Coach Bruce Arians and first-time General Manager Steve Keim.

Darren Urban of AZCardinals.com tells Steve Goldstein how the organization has changed and how the draft can help the team improve.

The Phoenix-based Beatitudes Campus has a different approach to caring for residents who have advanced dementia. The New Yorker magazine featured its methods in the May 20 issue.The Director of Education and Research for the Beatitudes Campus, Tena Alonzo, explained what inspired her and the campus to focus on the quality of life of its residents.

Governor Jan Brewer's decision to call lawmakers into a special session to finish the state budget and approve Medicaid expansion has deepened the divide within the Republican party. It has also brightened the line that separates supporters and opponents of the expansion.Steve Goldstein got updates on the special session from Jim Small of The Arizona Capitol Times and House Minority Leader Chad Campbell.

Former House Speaker Kirk Adams said the governor should have consulted with Senate President Andy Biggs and House Speaker Andy Tobin before calling for the special session. Adams called it a "political power play."

Former Majority Whip Chris Herstam said the governor was wise to use her power to move the session along at a time when some Democratic supporters were ready to leave the state on pre-planned trips and vacations.

When the word “art” is brought up with the discussions in Washington over immigration reform, it is usually included in phrases like the “art of compromise” or the “art of politics," but a new arrangement of six murals unveiled last week as part of Phoenix’s First Friday aims to connect visual art with the economic impact of immigration reform.

mural The artist for this mural is Lalo Cota. (Photo courtesy of Torres Marquez Communications)

Tania Marquez is president and CEO of Torres Marquez Communications, The firm commissioned the murals.

One of the mural artists commissioned by Torres Marquez is Pablo Luna. He is responsible for two of the murals. The other artists commissioned were Lalo Cota and Tato Caraveo.
 

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