SB 1454: AZ House views legislator misconduct as “another day at the office”

In response to today’s Arizona Republic article, More bills on HOAs expected next year, by Caitlin McGlade I posted the following comment —

The real issue here is the ethical conduct of a legislator who violated the constitution to get a  special interest bill put into law, her 3rd try.  “I have a responsibility to the stakeholders” Ugenti told the Senate GOV committee (‘stakeholders’ are the spcial interests and does not include homeowners). And, the subsequent “no harm, no foul” attitude of the House of Representatives to treat Ugenti’s conduct as just another day at work.  WRONG!  See details at

“Ethics” deals with right and wrong, and the House is saying this was not wrong by not pursuing disciplinary action per House Rule 1, because it happens all the time.  Is the Legislature saying it is above the law, above the Constitution? That it can do as it pleases?  Recall the anger that erupted regarding the former State Senator Bundgaard highway incident where disciplinary action was sought. He resigned instead of testifying before the Ethics  Committee.  But, not here with a direct violation of the Arizona Constitution.

To clarify the article, I was following Ugenti’s failed forerunner bill, HB 2371, that was incorporated into SB 1454 thereby making it unconstitutional.  It was done on the last day of the session in the wee hours of the morning (the session ended at 12:59 AM). By hiding the “HOAS” subject from the title it prevented  the public from reacting to the bill.  And there was time to write Gov. Brewer before she signed it.

Many believe that there was some good and some bad in the bill, but sadly its invalidation was the result of a direct violation of the law.  The end does not justify the means.

With its failure to discipline Ugenti, the Legislature cannot claim to be a legitimate government.  Political scientists and philosophers maintain that the legitimacy of a government rests in fair and just laws, and not in the illusion of justice. 

In his analysis of Machiavelli’s The Prince, Hadley Arkes wrote,

“The founders understood that the principal mission of government was to secure people in their natural rights — to protect them against the lawless private thugs as well as of ill-intentioned legislators.”

Published in: on September 30, 2013 at 8:00 am  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Democracy is based on the Majority Rule, the Stakeholders are not the majority they are the money motivated minority who don’t care about the little guy as they say…

    Since the only answer that comes to mind when a politician is only interested in the minority, questions the morality and corruption of the system, and proves that the system of Democracy is breaking down as when a politician acts with sneaky tactics and is caught with his/her hand in the cookie jar and nobody is interested in disciplining the wrong doer… It is thereby broken.

    Most do not want to rock the boat, as they themselves are taking a sneaky dip in to the cookie jar.

    We must act with eagle eyes to save our rights from being ripped away behind closed doors – in the name of profit. [my emphasis]

  2. When representatives fail to represent the people that should, tha’ts the time to see if they were elected or appointed. Then, use your vote or notify whoever appointed them

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