- Title X Funding: Last year, Governor Ducey signed into law a CAP-supported bill that requires the state to apply for federal Title X funding. The Trump Administration has opened the grant process thus enabling the state to make the application. If the state is awarded the funding, it will divert these family planning funds away from abortion providers in Arizona.
- NIFLA v. Becerra: Can the state of California force pro-life pregnancy centers to advertise for abortions? The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments for NIFLA v. Becerra on March 20, 2018. The court will decide whether the state’s requirement that pregnancy centers “post notices that encourage women to contact the State to receive information on free or low cost abortions” violates the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment. Center for Arizona Policy joined forty other family policy organizations in an amici curiae brief drafted by David French in support of the pregnancy centers.
- Masterpiece Cakeshop: The U.S. Supreme Court will rule on Masterpiece Cakeshop, one of the most important religious freedom cases in our generation. The court will decide whether Colorado’s public accommodation law that compels a cake artist to create expression that violates his sincerely held religious beliefs about marriage violates the Free Speech of Free Exercise Clauses of the First Amendment. We expect the court’s ruling by June.
- Brush & Nib: Two Christian artists are appealing the ruling by a Maricopa County Superior Court judge that a City of Phoenix ordinance that compels them to create wedding invitations for same-sex weddings does not violate their rights. The Arizona Court of Appeals has scheduled a hearing for April. The U.S. Supreme Court decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop could greatly affect the outcome of the case, depending on the timing of both cases.
- ESA Referendum and School Choice: Last year Governor Ducey signed into law the expansion of the Empowerment Scholarship Account program. However, opponents of the ESA expansion gathered enough signatures to put a hold on the law and place it on the 2018 ballot. ESA proponents have since challenged the signatures gathered. The case will likely end up at the Arizona Supreme Court, where the court will decide whether the referendum will go to the ballot in November.
- U.S. Senate Race in Arizona: Politico ranks Arizona’s U.S. Senate race as one of the top 10 Senate races to watch in 2018. With Senator Jeff Flake not seeking reelection, Republicans U.S. Rep. Martha McSally, former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, and former state senator Kelli Ward, as well as Democrat U.S. Rep. Kyrsten Sinema are all vying for the seat. According to The Cook Political Report, it is a “toss up” whether the seat will remain Republican or turn Democrat.
- CD 8 Special Election: With Congressman Trent Franks’ resignation, fourteen candidates are seeking his congressional seat. The primary special election will take place on February 27 and the general special election on April 24. CAP’s website, azvoterguide.com, will post information on the candidates by the start of early voting next week.
- Statewide Elections, Congressional seats, and State Legislature: All of Arizona’s executive officers, all nine seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, and all seats in the state legislature are up for election in 2018.
- Gambling Compacts: Word on the street is that Governor Ducey is renegotiating the compacts with the tribes to expand gambling on reservations and to increase state revenue dedicated to education.
- Justice Kennedy’s Retirement? Rumors swirled in 2017 that Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy was considering retirement. It will be interesting to see if the rumors come true in 2018, giving President Trump another Supreme Court appointment.