In the latest AZ-09 Democratic congressional debate, which aired on this morning's KPNX-12 Sunday Square Off, former legislator Kyrsten Sinema repeatedly made false assertions about her record in the state legislature.
SINEMA DENIAL: Sinema denied that she voted to give Joe Arpaio the authority to enforce immigration laws.
FACT: Sinema voted in favor of a pre-cursor to SB 1070, which gave Sheriff Joe Arpaio greater authority to enforce federal immigration laws. [Source: Vote on HB 2807, Forty-Eighth Legislative Session, March 30, 2008]
Sinema later explained that her vote was a mistake, and that she didn't know what was included in the bill. "Legislators don't read bills," she said. The bill, HB 2807, was straight-forward: only 214 words long and entitled, "immigration; local enforcement." [Source: Phoenix New Times, Apr. 27, 2008; HB 2807, Forty-Eighth Legislative Session, 2008]
SINEMA DENIAL: Sinema denied that she took more than one "junket" during her time in the Legislature.
FACT: Last year alone, Sinema took 8 junkets -- more than any other state senator. Sinema's 8 out-of-town trips at the expense of outside groups stood far ahead of others, many of whom took zero. Sen. Al Melvin of Tucson was next on the list with 6 junkets. [Source: Sinema's State Financial Disclosure, 2011]
SINEMA DENIAL: Sinema denied that she voted to support Governor Brewer's plan to remove 280,000 Arizonans from the Medicaid rolls last year.
FACT: According to various news outlets, Sinema voted "to ask the federal government for a waiver that would remove 280,000 people from Medicaid." [Source: "Kyrsten Sinema: 'I Didn't Mistakenly Vote for S@#%!', Phoenix New Times, Jan. 21, 2011]
Sinema had been in the legislature for more than six years when she "mistakenly" voted for the measure. [Source: "Two Dem lawmakers mistakenly vote to move Medicaid cuts forward," Arizona Daily Star, Jan. 20, 2011]
SINEMA DENIAL: Sinema denied that she did not support the recall against former Senate President Russell Pearce because Pearce was her "boss."
FACT: Various media reports refute Sinema's denial. At a meeting of the Progressive Democrats of America, Sinema was asked why she refused to support the recall against Pearce. According to report, she said, "He's my boss. I have to work with him."
When asked to clarify her comments, Sinema dug in further, explaining, "It's like Russell Pearce is my boss. He can stop my bills. He can stop me from getting a hearing in committee if he wants to." [Source: "Can Kyrsten Sinema Win in Congressional District 9?," Phoenix New Times, Jan. 12, 2012]
State Sen. Steve Gallardo said that Sinema "would protect Russell Pearce while we were working hard to get him recalled." [Source: "Krysten Sinema, Arizona Congressional Candidate, Accused Of Supporting Russell Pearce," Huffington Post, July 12, 2012]