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Governor: Terry Goddard
Name: Terry Goddard
Hometown: Tucson, Arizona
Office running for: Governor
Political experience: I began in politics as a kid, helping my father run for governor. As a young attorney, I became concerned about the way city council people were elected in Phoenix -- they all ran at large -- and led a successful petition drive/election effort to create a district system. I was elected mayor four times (ironically, the one remaining at-large role). Eight years ago, Arizonans elected me as their attorney general.
Family: Wife, Monica Lee Goddard; son, 11 years old
Please describe your platform: As governor, my number one priority will be finding ways to recover lost jobs to get Arizonans working again. Job attraction and development should always be Job One. Instead we see political follies at the capitol that drive jobs away -- closing highway rest areas, shutting down state parks, attempting to abolish health care for low-income children, arguing about how long traffic lights should stay yellow. These games don't build Arizona or attract new investment. Arizona is on the wrong track.
As an Arizona native who has spent much of my adult life working to improve our state, I am angry to see the current leadership mortgaging our children’s future by irresponsible financial management, squandering our resources, increasing the deficit, and dealing with our long-term problems with short-term attempted fixes. They haven’t balanced the budget or improved schools. Our current “leaders” just waste time and make Arizona look silly. It’s time for Arizona leaders to act like adults.
After almost two years under Jan Brewer, our state has no plan to restore the over 365,000 jobs that Arizona men and women have lost. We get Arizona working again by diversifying Arizona’s economy. For too long we have relied on sheer growth for economic development. That’s not economic development - that is a migration pattern.
To diversify our economy, we need to establish a private sector organization run by professionals to promote Arizona and help grow Arizona jobs and attract new jobs from out of state. That’s what I did as Mayor of Phoenix and it worked.
We must not abandon our mainstay industries in Arizona. Tourism, health care, border trade and agriculture have been neglected for too long. Their budgets have been cut and programs ignored; we need to reenergize these economic development engines.
We must reinvest in Science Foundation Arizona. SFA, and other cutting edge business development organizations, have a proven track record in leveraging state, federal and private dollars for research and development here in Arizona. We must attract science-based, research driven industries, and help industries that export products grow here.
We must focus on what matters to Arizonans: A good job to support a family, a great education system to prepare our children for the future, open space to enjoy the beauty of Arizona.
Governor Terry Goddard will provide the leadership to get Arizonans working again.
If elected, what is your first priority?
There are three top priorities, all of them equally crucial:
1. Restoring lost jobs – For the next governor, attracting new jobs and building our economy must be the highest priority. (Please go to my website, www.terrygoddard.com/issues/jobs for a detailed description of how I believe we can put Arizonans back to work.)
2. Eliminate the State Budget Deficit – The next governor must tell Arizonans the truth about the budget and put all the options on the table for discussion and decision. Important decisions about what we spend and what we cut cannot be made behind closed doors. We must work together, across party lines, to eliminate the structural deficit, pay off the education funding gimmicks, and support the priorities of Arizonans - education, public safety, health care, clean air, clean water and open spaces. At the same time, our tax burden must become competitive with other states.
3. Fix our Schools – Quality public schools are the foundation for economic success. Our children are our most important resource. Public schools are drivers of local economies all across our state. They help us attract employers and retain quality employees. They train the workforce Arizona businesses need to be competitive. I will never be satisfied with schools ranked at the bottom nationally and will work tirelessly to bring Arizona schools into the top 10 in educational achievement. As the parents of a public school student, my wife Monica and I have seen firsthand the effects of almost a billion dollars of cuts to K-12 education.
Who do you think is your biggest challenger and why?
- I believe that we can do it while honoring and protecting our country's constitution.
What do you think sets you apart from your opponent(s)?
I am extremely proud of my role in reducing crime in Arizona. Violent crime has dropped over 20 percent statewide during my time as attorney general. I have fought human smugglers by seizing tens of millions of their illicit proceeds. My fight with Western Union over wire transfers to human smuggling organizations resulted in a $94 million settlement, most of which I am putting into grants to help law enforcement throughout the Southwest border area fight border crime. My efforts were recently recognized by Attorneys General from both parties and from all over the United States, when they honored me this year as the nation's most outstanding Attorney General. My work has also been commended by the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
What would you do to achieve more transparency in government, and should government officials be in charge of managing those efforts?
Throughout my life, I have been an advocate for more transparency in government, and I have put those beliefs into action. When I first entered politics in Phoenix, the entire city council was elected at large. I led a voter challenge that created a district system to give voters more of a voice in city government. We literally took the locks off the doors to the mayor’s office so people could have easier access, and we conducted city business in open forums and council meetings. As Attorney General, I have enforced Arizona’s open meetings laws and pushed to assure that governmental bodies all over this state make decisions in public. It’s ironic that one of the most important governmental bodies in the state, the Arizona Legislature, has hidden much of its decision-making from public scrutiny.
Public notices are regarded as one important way for the public to find out what is really happening in government. Newspapers currently not only print public notices but also operate a free, consolidated, online, searchable database. Some people advocate that public notices should be available only on government websites. Do you agree that the Legislature should change the current law to mandate that public notices be available only on government websites?
I do not believe that public notices should be available only on government websites, and I do not favor changing the law.
What do you think is the biggest challenge right now facing Yumans, and Arizonans?
I believe the loss of jobs and the struggling economy is our biggest challenge. It is worse because of the failure of state leadership, lack of advocacy for Arizona business, non-competitive taxes and insufficient educational resources. Jobs, the state budget and our struggling educational system are intertwined. Our state leadership doesn’t even understand that there is a difference between cutting fat in state government and cutting income-producing services such as tourism and parks.
What would you do, if elected, to help change that?
There is much that Arizona can do to attract new industries that provide more and better jobs. I will encourage job creation and capital investment by providing a stable, predictable and rational budgeting process – one that eliminates gimmicks and game-playing. I will create an education system that has stable funding, trains a quality workforce and provides the employees that businesses need. I will work with the business community to create a positive business climate. Additionally, I will work with our tourism industry to create a positive image of Arizona.
What is one of your strengths? Weaknesses (something you’d like to improve upon)?
I care about Arizona and have dedicated much of my life to public service. At the same time, I am committed to my family. Those two strengths are not necessarily at odds -- I want my son to grow up in an Arizona that has the same strong values and quality of life as the Arizona of the past. I am committed to our state and believe in its unique promise.
OK, weaknesses, well, my wife could do a better job of answering this question! Truth is, I’m a collector. I never want to throw anything away. On the other hand, we recently were struck by a serious garage fire, and most of what I lost was not all that critical. I’ve always believed that the minute you throw something away will be the minute before you need it!
What is one thing that you want voters to know?
I went out of state to college and three years in the Navy, but I always wanted to come home to Arizona. I want my son --and all the children growing up in Arizona today -- to have the same opportunities I have enjoyed. I hope they will raise their families here.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
As Attorney General, I:
• Targeted wire transfers of cartel profits (resulting in permanent disruption of the cartels’ main method of doing business in Arizona).
• Seized tens of millions in cartel assets and the use of this money to fund future cartel investigations.
• Prosecuted major human- and drug-smuggling rings, leading to more than 372 arrests, 580 indictments, 37,000 pounds of drugs seized and 530 vehicles seized since 2007.
• Trained over 400 Mexican prosecutors (using federal funds made available under the Merida initiative) to improve prosecutions of cartel members in Mexico.
• Created the Southwest Border Alliance to better coordinate efforts of local, state and federal law enforcement along the Southwest border, using money from this year’s $94 million settlement with Western Union.
• Established the Border Crime Prosecution Team to investigate and prosecute criminal activity by the cartels, again using money from my settlement with Western Union.
Additional actions that Arizona should take now:
- Increase funding to the Southwest Border Alliance to better coordinate efforts of local, state and federal law enforcement along the Southwest border.
- Enhance the Attorney General’s Border Crime Prosecution Team that today is investigating and prosecuting criminal activity by the drug cartels.
- Demand that the Congress and President pass immigration reform that:
Improves border security,
Requires employers to hire workers from the legal worker pool,
Requires those here illegally to register, pay a fine, pay any back taxes, and learn English before gaining legal work status,
Requires those who want to earn US Citizenship to go to the back of the line behind those who played by the rules,
Imposes tougher sentences (felonies) for illegal crossers and those who employ them,
Provides more resources for enforcement and deportations, and
Allows for timely issuance of work visas that match legal immigration flows to the nation's employment needs.