SCOOP: Jay Lawrence: ‘I don’t want refugees settled here… Call me a bigot’

By Laura Gómez | Arizona Mirror

Jay Lawrence at a rally with Donald Trump, Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle at the West Valley GOP Office in Sun City in November 2018.
/Photo by Gage Skidmore / Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

At a Jan. 16 political event, Republican state Rep. Jay Lawrence said that refugees “take from us” and generally make life worse in Arizona, a view he admitted makes him bigoted.

“I don’t want refugees settled here,” Lawrence said at a forum hosted by the Fountain Hills AZ Tea Party. “They will take from us, they will make for lower wages for us, they will make for more expense in our schools, more expense in our emergency rooms.

“I will do all I can, as a legislator, to not accept a refugee population in the state of Arizona,” the third-term Republican from Scottsdale said. “Call me a bigot, whatever you want, I just think it’s best for the state of Arizona.”

Arizona Mirror obtained audio of Lawrence’s comments from American Bridge 21st Century, a liberal super PAC that sets out to “find what Republicans are hiding and make sure voters hear about it,” according to its website. 

Lawrence’s comments about refugees pit him against Republican Gov. Doug Ducey, who in December told the federal government that Arizona would accept refugees. 


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