Arizona voters have long said education is a top issue. Here’s why GOP candidates see new opportunity

By Stacey Barchenger | Arizona Republic

Outside a high school where the Scottsdale Unified School District’s board metTuesday, some parents waved signs in support of the district and its staff. Just feet away, others collected signatures to recall three of the school board members.

And farther down the street, standing in the back of a pickup truck, two Republican candidates for statewide office in Arizona lent their support to another crowd of frustrated parents calling for the resignation of one board member.

Jim Lamon, a Republican solar power executive hoping to win the party’s nomination to challenge U.S. Sen. Mark Kelly in 2022, pledged his support, including financial backing if the parents wanted to sue the district.

“These people in that school board meeting about to kick off here, they work for you,” Lamon said, as parents said “that’s right” in response.

“They work for the parents and the kids, not for themselves. And we don’t work for them. … We’re a peaceful group, we’re great parents here, and we’ll stand tall. And I got your back.”


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December 2021