Measure To Block Arizona School Voucher Program Qualifies For Ballot

Published: Wednesday, September 6, 2017 - 4:31pm
Updated: Wednesday, September 6, 2017 - 4:35pm
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Voters will have the last word on the Legislature’s expansion of the state’s school voucher program. That is, depending on what the courts or lawmakers themselves do going forward.

The Maricopa County Recorder’s Office has found 86.6 percent of the signatures it reviewed were valid, leading Secretary of State Michele Reagan to say it’s a "mathematical guarantee" the measure would make the ballot.

But, there’s still a legal challenge. Kim Martinez with the American Federation for Children says the signature validation rate is irrelevant to that effort.

"Of course we knew from the beginning that this was going to be decided through the court case by a judge," Martinez said.

Martinez says her group has evidence of falsified petitions, and other issues that she believes should lead a judge to throw the measure off the ballot.

But Dawn Penich-Thacker with the group Save Our Schools, which spearheaded the drive to put the issue to voters, disputes that.

"We never heard reports like that. Anecdotally, when we presented this to voters, talked to them about it, the vast majority knew what it was. They know why they oppose it. And they understand the issue," Penich-Thacker said.

And joining me now to help us better understand the issue, and what comes next is Howie Fischer of Capitol Media Services.

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