Podcast November 9, 2020

Election 2020. What’s Next? Democratic Perspective contributors discuss what they expect to happen now that former Vice-President Joe Biden is president-elect of the United States. Klaus von Stutterheim begins by outlining the many initiatives and plans that will be priorities for the Biden administration. Gary LaMaster addresses some of the obstacles the new administration can expect, including Senate obstruction and a recalcitrant outgoing president. And Steve Williamson suggests some things Biden could do to restore norms and help bring the nation together.

Posted in Civic Renewal, Class Conflict, Climate Change, Democratic Governance, Economic Stimulus, Elections, Environmental Issues, Foreign Affairs, Global Warming, Government, Health Care Policy, Immigration, International Relations, Jobs and Employment, LIberals and Conservatives, National Politics, Political Polarization, Presidential Elections, Public Health Policy, Race and Class, Taxation | Tagged , | Comments Off on Podcast November 9, 2020

Taylor Interview – Podcast November 2, 2020

Anonymous No More. Democratic Perspective welcomes Miles Taylor who gained notoriety as “Anonymous” for his op-ed and book criticizing the Trump administration. Taylor is the former Chief of Staff to former Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjn Nielsen and Acting Secretary Chad Wolf. A lifelong Republican who spent 2-1/2 years in administration, he is now a Biden supporter.

Taylor first went into government service to help prevent another 9/11. His goal was to focus on the many serious threats facing our nation. Instead, under Trump, he found that the president had a very different priority. He explains it this way: “If you thought of Homeland Security as an apple pie, you have a decent slice that is border security and immigration, another slice is cyber security, another is keeping terrorists out of America, and another is emergency response to wildfires and hurricanes. When Donald Trump looked at that pie, he saw 95 percent of it as border security and just wanted to gobble it up…everything else fell off his list.

“I genuinely think that the country is less safe that it would have been,” Taylor says. “His daily tweets were like a weapon of mass disruption while we were trying to protect the country against weapons of mass destruction.”

Posted in Department of Homeland Security, Domestic Extremism, Elections, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, Government, Homeland Security, Human Rights, Immigration, International Relations, International Terrorism, Interviews, Morality, National Politics, National Security, Presidential Elections, Public Service | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Taylor Interview – Podcast November 2, 2020

Lutes Interview – Podcast October 26, 2020

Running Against Far-Right Extremism. Democratic Perspective welcomes John Lutes, the Democratic candidate for Yavapai County District 1 Supervisor. A moderate Democrat, Lutes is running against someone who supports the armed right-wing extremist group The Oathkeepers. “I would call them vigilantes,” says Lutes.

Although Republicans hold a near 2 to 1 advantage in the county and there hasn’t been Democratic representation on the Board for nearly 30 years, Lutes is a moderate who believes he has a good chance to win. “I support the county sheriff and the new Justice Center in the city. I think that gained me quite a bit of Republican support,” claims Lutes. “It’s a very important office. People know very little of what the Board of Supervisors is in charge of. It controls a substantial amount of your tax money and it’s important to the public safety in Yavapai County.”

Posted in Arizona Politics, Conservatives and Reactionaries, Domestic Extremism, Elections, Government, Interviews, Justice System, Law Enforcement, Local Politics, Political Candidacy, Political Clubs, Public Policy, Public Service, Taxation | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on Lutes Interview – Podcast October 26, 2020

Evans & Rutherford Interviews – Podcast October 19, 2020

Voting Down The Ballot (And On The Back Of The Ballot). In each election, some of the most important races are down ballot. Often these candidates and issues can affect lives more directly than those at the very top of the ballot. A great example is Coral Evans, candidate for Arizona State Representative, and Cathy Rutherford, president of Democrats of the Red Rocks.

Evans, who is currently Mayor of Flagstaff, is hoping to end the extreme partisanship in the state legislature. She says, “Too many legislators have not served at the local level. When someone calls me about a pothole, I don’t ask if they’re Republican, Democrat, Independent or Green. I ask for the address.” She continues, “The partisan world we’re living in does us all a disservice. It’s important that we pass policies that work for us all and move things forward.” Her priority issues are local control, education, small business, healthcare, rural broadband and more.

Rutherford notes that there are two important propositions on the back of the Arizona ballot, which would provide more funding for public education and legalize possession of small amounts of marijuana. She calls for everyone to make a plan to vote. “It needs to be a landslide for Biden,” she says. “We need to show everyone that we will not tolerate what has happened with this administration.”

Posted in Arizona Politics, Education, Education Funding, Elections, Entrepreneurship, Environmental Issues, Government, Health Care Policy, Infrastructure Investment, Interviews, LIberals and Conservatives, Local Politics, Pharmaceutical Pricing and Procurement, Political Candidacy, Political Clubs, Public Education, Public Service, Small Business, Taxation, Veterans' Issues | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on Evans & Rutherford Interviews – Podcast October 19, 2020

Mundell, Stanfield, Tovar Interview – Podcast October 12, 2020

Arizona’s Fourth Branch Of Government. Originally broadcast in March, Democratic Perspective revisits an interview with the three Democratic candidates for Arizona’s Corporation Commission. We replay the interview because we feel it important to remind listeners of the importance of looking beyond the presidential, senatorial and congressional races to vote “down ballot” for members of the Commission who have a direct impact on such important issues as utility rates and renewable energy.

Please listen as Anna Tovar, Shea Stanfield and Bill Mundell explain the importance of the offices they seek. And, if you live in Arizona, be sure to vote for all three!

Posted in Arizona Politics, Elections, Environment, Government, Industrial Policy, Interviews, Political Candidacy, Public Accountability, Public Policy, Regulatory Agencies, Renewable Energy | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Mundell, Stanfield, Tovar Interview – Podcast October 12, 2020

Kelly and Michaels Interviews – Podcast October 5, 2020

Turning Arizona Blue. Democratic Perspective welcomes former astronaut and US Senate candidate for Arizona, Mark Kelly. Kelly answers questions on a diverse range of topics, such as federal management of public lands, mining, climate science, solar energy, as well as the high cost of healthcare and pharmaceuticals. For example, he proposes giving older Americans, 50 and older, an opportunity to buy into Medicare at a premium, which he believes could also bring down private insurance costs.

Later, the show continues with Donna Michaels who is running to represent Arizona’s Verde Valley on the County Board of Supervisors. Michaels lives in the Verde Valley where she has served on many community organizations and boards. She responds to questions about the proposed Verde Connect highway and the proposed new jail in Prescott.  “Growth is inevitable,” she says. “It’s how we manage it. How do we collaborate across the Verde Valley on land management? Every community has a right to its own sense of space. And it’s our job as supervisors to protect them.”

Posted in Arizona Politics, Climate Change, Community, Community Activism, Development, Elections, Energy Policy, Environment, Environmental Issues, Federal Lands, Global Warming, Government, Health Care, Health Care Policy, Health Insurance, Interviews, Local Politics, Medicare, National Politics, Pharmaceutical Pricing and Procurement, Political Candidacy, Public Accountability, Public Health Policy, Public Lands, Public Service, Renewable Energy, Sustainable Development | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Kelly and Michaels Interviews – Podcast October 5, 2020

O’Halleran Interview – Podcast September 28, 2020

Demanding More Of Congress. Democratic Perspective welcomes Congressman Tom O’Halleran in a conversation that covers a wide range of issues, including the upcoming election, the pandemic, healthcare, broadband, public lands, climate change, and the needs of rural America. He begins by addressing the postal crisis and foreign election interference, saying, “Our state has not been hurt as hard by the postal crisis as East Coast state. But this never should have occurred. We, as individuals, must be sure that we get our votes in. And we should check in with the Secretary of State to make sure they receive those ballots.”

Noting the complexities of the many issues we face, he says we must demand more from Congress. “We can’t sit back and take all of August and part of September off and tell people we didn’t have time to get the budget done. We have to be involved on a day-to-day basis. We can’t be in session just 111 days a year.” To learn more O’Halleran’s vision for America and his positions on issues, visit https://www.tomohalleran.com/

Posted in Arizona Politics, Economic Policy, Economic Stimulus, Education, Elections, Energy Policy, Environment, Federal Lands, Global Warming, Government, Health Care, Interviews, Mine Safety, National Politics, Pandemic, Political Candidacy, Public Accountability, Public Education, Renewable Energy, Water Policy | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on O’Halleran Interview – Podcast September 28, 2020

Richtman Interview – Podcast September 21, 2020

Saving Social Security From Donald Trump And The GOP. Democratic Perspective welcomes back Max Richtman, President and CEO of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare. He begins by noting that, for the first time in its history, the board of his organization voted to endorse a candidate for president – Joe Biden. The reason, he explains, is because of the danger Donald Trump poses to Social Security. He has already proposed nearly a trillion dollars in cuts to Social Security and Medicare. And Richtman notes, Trump has promised to permanently eliminate the payroll tax and fund the program out of the general budget. That would almost certainly cause Social Security to run out of money in a couple of years. “He either doesn’t understand how Social Security is funded” says Richtman. “Or he doesn’t care. Or it’s both.”

Richtman goes on to say that a lot of people don’t understand that the payroll tax funds the Social Security program. “I think a better way to explain it,” he says, “is that the payroll tax really is an insurance payment.” He points out that FICA stands for Federal Insurance Contribution Act. As a result, he emphasizes, “Social Security is not an entitlement. It’s an earned benefit.”

Posted in Arizona Politics, Community Activism, Elections, Government, Interviews, Local Politics, Medicaid, Medicare, National Politics, Pandemic, Political Clubs, Presidential Elections, Privatization, Public Policy, Social Insurance, Social Security, Taxation | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on Richtman Interview – Podcast September 21, 2020

French Interview – Podcast September 14, 2020

Focus On Accountability. Democratic Perspective welcomes Felicia French, LD6 candidate for the Arizona State Senate. French is a veteran of the Army and the Arizona National Guard serving as a nurse and reaching the rank of full colonel. During her 32-year career, she served as a commander for seven years and earned the Legion of Merit, a Bronze Star, two Humanitarian Service Medals, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and the Expert Field Medical Badge.

Even after her retirement, French has continued to serve the public as a volunteer with the Civil Air Patrol, Tonto Rim Search and Rescue, Community Emergency Response Team, and Sierra Club. As a nurse, she has also volunteered with hospice military veterans, disaster relief efforts in the Bahamas, and most recently with the Navajo Nation.

It is in that same spirit of public service, French is running for public office. Her top issue is accountability, especially fiscal accountability. Other issues French considers priorities are making affordable quality healthcare available to all Arizonans, improving public education, protecting scarce water resources, and expanding the availability of broadband.

On the latter issue, she notes, “Twenty-two percent of Arizona does not have broadband.” She explains that expanding broadband could have a huge impact on education in the age of Covid-19, as well as making telemedicine more available, in addition to helping small businesses. “Expanding access throughout the state is a win, win, win,” she says.

Posted in Arizona Politics, Education, Education Funding, Elections, Environmental Issues, Government, Health Care, Health Care Delivery, Health Care Policy, Interviews, Jobs and Employment, Military, Native American Issues, Pandemic, Political Candidacy, Public Accountability, Public Education, Public Health Policy, Public Service, Renewable Energy, Tax and Investment Policy, Water Policy | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on French Interview – Podcast September 14, 2020

2020 Election – Podcast September 7, 2020

Previewing The Presidential Election. Three of the Democratic Perspective contributors analyze the upcoming election. Steve Williamson discusses the possibilities of Arizona turning blue in November. Klaus von Stutterheim discusses the various scenarios of what could happen if the election is close or the outcome is unclear, as well as what could happen if Trump narrowly loses but refuses to leave. And Gary LaMaster discusses the situation in Minnesota which has been targeted as a key swing state by the Trump campaign after losing the state by only 2 percentage points to Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Posted in Arizona Politics, Conspiracy Theories, Constitutional Issues, Disinformation, Elections, Government, National Politics, Political Candidacy, Polling, Presidential Elections | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on 2020 Election – Podcast September 7, 2020