Barton Needs To Respect The Constitution And Electorate



Last week, speaking to the Payson Tea Party, State Representative Brenda Barton announced her position on two policies that critically affect all of us in Arizona.

The first had to do with Child Protective Services, which the Legislature has severely understaffed and underfunded for years. The Legislature’s abandonment of constitutional responsibility to protect children resulted in 6,500 children being left unprotected from possible abuse or neglect.

As a member of the Legislature, Barton has to acknowledge that she had a hand in that. Likewise Bob Thorpe and Chester Crandell who represent our area.

Now as public outcries are forcing her and the other legislators to correct their dereliction of duty, the debate is over sufficient funding for professional staff at CPS. Barton said that she wants the money to be taken from other children’s programs that were specifically dedicated by referendum to early childhood education.

That’s like trying to trim the cost of running a railroad by transferring funds for the care and maintenance of engines to embellishing cabooses. What kind of solution is that? By referendum the people of Arizona dedicated the “First Things First” funds exclusively for early and other levels of children’s education.

Barton needs to respect the Constitution and the mandates of the electorate and stop playing roulette with the welfare of children.

Barton justified her position by saying essentially, “I read an article once which said that among third-graders there was no difference in the education achievement of students who had attended pre-school from those who had not done so.”

This preposterous statement reveals a deep level of ignorance regarding the overwhelming documentation that early childhood education is the single most important factor in determining the future educational and later economic success of children.

To make things worse, two members of the Tea Party who were present also serve on the Payson School Board: Shirley Dye and Barbara Underwood.

Neither one of them spoke up to indicate how wildly misinformed Barton is about educational policies. What were they thinking? Or are these school board members themselves not willing to go to bat for children?

The second position announced by Barton is that she favors electing U.S. senators by politicians instead of by the people at large. She said that being accountable to the Legislature rather than directly to the citizens would better represent the interests of the state. Right! Take the vote away from the people, give it to the politicians, and we will get better government in Washington!

These radical positions advocated by Tea Party proponents like Barton are based on ignorance and a willingness to override the will of the citizens.

Come on, people, let’s get somebody in government who is intelligent, who works for real solutions, and who listens to the voices of the people. We don’t need officials who are so radical in believing that violating the Constitution and ignoring the will of the voters is good for all of us.

Raymond Spatti

Editor’s note: Barbara Underwood and Shirley Dye both asked questions indicating their support for restoring funding for education, including all-day kindergarten. During the Tea Party speech, Rep. Barton supported a measure that would enable the state Legislature to put on the ballot a candidate for U.S. senator, who would still need to get elected statewide — perhaps in competition with candidates nominated by the political parties.


Ronald Hamric 2 years, 12 months ago

Mr. Spatti,

As you appear so well informed, then you must be aware that the "Founders" ( you know, those really ignorant guys)actually wrote into the Constitution that Senators were to be appointed by State Legislators. That was changed via the 17th Amendment in 1913. The main impetus for the Amendment came via William Jennings Bryan, the consummate Progressive. Surprise!


Donald Cline 2 years, 12 months ago

I see the word "Constitution" or a derivative of it three times in your letter, Mr. Spatti: I'm not sure your use of the word means what you think it means. Could you tell me, please, in what Article, Section, and Clause the Arizona Constitution imposes an obligation on the Arizona government to "protect the children," and in the process, deprive the parents of their rights over the children without a court ruling? Can you tell me in what way Rep. Barton is not "respecting the Constitution"? What Article, Section, and Clause is she not respecting? And in what way is Rep. Barton "violating" the Constitution by advocating the United States Constitution be respected in the manner of the choosing of U.S. Senators? Perhaps you are not aware of it, as Mr. Hamric points out above, but Article I Section 3 of the U.S. Constitution requires that U.S. Senators be chosen by the States, not by the people: The people already had representation in the House. Contrary to the impressions of some, the 17th Amendment was not ratified: Such an Amendment, depriving States of their suffrage in the Senate, is specifically prohibited by Article V of the Constitution unless every State Consents -- Utah and Delaware withheld their Consent voting to reject the 17th, and eight other States withheld their Consent by taking no action at all on the 17th. Thus we have not had a Constitutional Senate since 1913, and thus not one single federal law, treaty, cabinet or judicial appointment has been passed or ratified pursuant to the U.S. Constitution for a century. Can you say "Rogue Occupation Government and criminal regime"? I can.


Anita Christy 2 years, 12 months ago

Thank you Mr. Cline for stating accurately why senators were supposed to be selected by the State legislatures. It was because those senators were supposed to represent the interests of their respective states. They exemplified the "sovereignty of the states." It worked that way for 124 years. After the 17th Amendment, the senators spent less time conferring with the elected state officials, and more time with Washington lobbyists, campaign funders, national advocacy groups.


don evans 2 years, 12 months ago

"Come on, people, let’s get somebody in government who is intelligent, who works for real solutions, and who listens to the voices of the people. We don’t need officials who are so radical in believing that violating the Constitution and ignoring the will of the voters is good for all of us." So does that mean you will actively work against the intrusive nanny state government policies of Obama and his un-elected czars?


Anita Christy 2 years, 12 months ago

There is one Truth about Obama that cannot be called a "myth," and that is that without a doubt, the record shows that Barack Obama is the most pro abortion president in U.S. History. He celebrates Roe v Wade. He supports late-term abortion. His bill signings, speeches, appointments and other actions have promoted abortion before and during his presidency. His focus is on the voting woman who wants abortion on demand. The unborn child means literally nothing,a throwaway, a mistake. He supports stopping a beating heart (6-8 weeks). He supports abortions which are known to cause horrific tortuous pain to the unborn child as he or she is cut away piece by piece (20 weeks). Those screams are silent, and that’s all the better for Obama. Since Roe v Wade was made law in 1973, 56 million abortions have been performed. Planned Parenthood performed nearly 360,000 of them in fiscal year 2012. PP adores Obama, and he adores PP.

Is he ignorant of all of this murder? He’d have to be a moron to be that ignorant. No, he’s just plain evil.


John Wiechmann 2 years, 12 months ago

I think god has a fairly good handle on his plan here. I doubt any of us sinners can be of any real help. Abortions and gays are as much a part of gods plan as baseball and apple pie. I for one am content to let him handle it as he sees fit.


Anita Christy 2 years, 12 months ago

“First Things First” maintains a surplus of hundreds of millions of dollars. It is far above and beyond its average annual operating expenses. This is taxpayer money doing nothing. Is it unreasonable to ask “First Things First” to open its enormous coffers and help the children of Arizona who are in harm’s way by partially funding some of the reforms needed by CPS? Or is $45 million not worth their safety in Mr. Spatti's view?


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