Brimhall To Battle For Re-Election

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Amendments have been proposed, debates have been voiced and "the warrior," Rep. Debra Brimhall (R-Dist. 4), has decided to continue her legislative battle and run for re-election.

"I want to continue the work that I've begun and continue educating," Brimhall said. "Old dogs don't want to learn new tricks, but I bring new ideas in because the old (ones) don't work.

"We are still solving the same problems that we were 60 years ago because issues don't go away."

At presstime, it was unclear whether Brimhall would be running unopposed in the election.

Brimhall, who is rounding out a four-year term as a state representative, said she wants to build on the progress she's made on health-care and insurance issues during a second term, rather than conquering new reforms.

For example, she said, she is fighting the proposed Graham-Leach-Bliley Act which would establish a national registry and a new federal bureaucracy for all insurance.

"We don't want this," Brimhall said.

Instead, she said she is working on an amendment at state and national levels that would make the United States a player in the global insurance market.

In addition, she said, she's struggling with health-care and insurance-disparity issues closer to home.

"Rural Arizona teachers receive less pay than teachers in Maricopa County for the same work," Brimhall said. "They teach from the same books, to the same number of students, the same number of days; yet when they retire from the same system, their health care and retirement benefits are not. The same also holds true for other state employees."

With about 70 percent of the votes centralized in the Maricopa County area, rural Arizona is sometimes left without a voice, Brimhall said.

"I am a warrior for the people," she said. "I give everything that I've got to stand up and give a voice against the bureaucratic monsters and money power dragons. I take my sword and fight against political powers."

Characterizing herself as a battling politician armed with "knowledge and assured confidence," Brimhall said she is "grateful for this opportunity and hopes to continue.

"To leave this state without the knowledge of our present issues or a voice in the debate would be a tragedy," she said.

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