Debbie Lesko

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Debbie Lesko
Debbie Lesko.gif
Arizona House of Representatives District 21
Incumbent
In office
2009-Present
Term ends
January 5, 2015
Years in position 5
PartyRepublican
Leadership
Majority Whip, Arizona State House of Representatives
2010-2012
Compensation
Base salary$24,000/year
Per diem$35/day for the first 120 days of regular session and for special sessions and $10/day thereafter.
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 4, 2014
First electedNovember 6, 2012
Term limitsFour consecutive terms
Personal
ProfessionHearing Officer, North Valley Justice Court
Websites
Office website
Campaign website
CandidateVerification
Debbie Lesko is a Republican member of the Arizona House of Representatives, representing District 21. She was first elected to the chamber in 2008. She served as State House Majority Whip. She is Arizona state chairman for ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council).[1]

Lesko was a 2014 Republican candidate for District 21 of the Arizona State Senate.

Biography

Lesko's professional experience includes working as a Hearing Officer with the North Valley Justice Court, a member of the Arizona Citizens' Defense League, 1st Vice President of the Arrowhead Republican Women's Club and Voter Registration Chairman with the Maricopa County Republican Party.[2]

Committee assignments

2013-2014

At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Lesko served on the following committees:

Arizona Committee Assignments, 2013
Federalism and Fiscal Responsibility
Reform and Human Services
Ways and Means, Chair
Budget

2011-2012

In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Lesko served on these committees:

2009-2010

In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Lesko served on these committees:

Issues

Lesko's sponsored bills include:

  • HB 2102 - financial institution records; disclosure; notice
  • HB 2127 - legislators; voting required; salary loss
  • HB 2130 - campaign finance reports; penalty
  • HB 2400 - partial-birth abortions; definition

For a full listed of sponsored bills see the House website.

Medicaid expansion lawsuit

See also: Can Arizona conservatives beat the clock to block Medicaid expansion from taking effect Jan. 1?

Debbie Lesko is one of the 36 Republican members of the state legislature who signed onto a lawsuit in September 2013 against Arizona Governor Jan Brewer with the conservative Goldwater Institute over the Arizona Medicaid Expansion.[3]

Following the U.S. Supreme Court ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act in June 2012, Brewer, a Republican who had long fought for its repeal, ultimately broke ranks with her party on the issue of Medicaid.[4] She first publicly embraced Arizona's participation in the federally controlled Medicaid expansion during her 2013 State of the State address. In addition to conceding the futility of continued opposition to Obamacare in the wake of the Supreme Court decision and Obama's re-election victory, Brewer discussed the considerable popular support for expanding patient eligibility: residents had already voted twice to make the state government provide free care for everyone up to the federal poverty line.

By June, a Medicaid expansion law had obtained passage in Arizona, despite a reluctant Republican-led state legislature. The United Republican Alliance of Principled Conservatives responded by filing a referendum to block the Medicaid Expansion law from taking effect, but the referendum failed to collect the required 86,405 valid signatures to land on the November 2014 ballot before the September 11, 2013, deadline.[5]

The referendum option off the table, expansion opponents decided a lawsuit was the best available alternative. The suit was filed on the grounds that because the expansion would require participating hospitals to pay a set fee to the state to help compensate for future reductions in the federal subsidy, the law contains a tax and therefore its implementation under the control of the executive branch would violate the state law enforcing separation of powers. While the imposition of such a fee is an authority given to state agencies "over 80 times in the past five years,"[3] according to a Brewer spokesperson, critics insist that the fee's resemblance to a tax is too close for constitutional comfort, per Article 3, Section 22, the distribution of powers.[6]

The state's conservative interests, plus the 36 Republican members of the legislature who voted against Arizona's involvement in the federal government-controlled Medicaid reform, hoped to have expansion shut down before it officially went live Jan. 1, 2014, with eligible residents beginning to enroll as early as Oct. 1.

Elections

2014

See also: Arizona State Senate elections, 2014

Elections for the office of Arizona State Senate took place in 2014. A primary election took place on August 26, 2014. The general election was held on November 4, 2014. The signature-filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in this election was May 28, 2014. Carolyn Vasko was unopposed in the Democratic primary. Representative Debbie Lesko was unopposed in the Republican primary. Lesko defeated Vasko in the general election.[7][8][9]

Arizona State Senate District 21, General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngDebbie Lesko 63.2% 32,119
     Democratic Carolyn Vasko 36.8% 18,687
Total Votes 50,806

2012

See also: Arizona House of Representatives elections, 2012

Lesko won re-election in the 2012 election for Arizona House of Representatives District 21. She and incumbent Rick Gray ran unopposed in the Republican primary on August 28, 2012. She won the general election on November 6, 2012.[10][11]

Arizona House of Representatives, District 20, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngDebbie Lesko Incumbent 30.1% 41,023
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngRick Gray Incumbent 29.2% 39,791
     Democratic Carol Lokare 21.1% 28,715
     Democratic Sheri Van Horsen 19.7% 26,790
     Libertarian Helmuth Hack (Write-in) 0% 4
Total Votes 136,323

2010

See also: Arizona House of Representatives elections, 2010

Lesko won re-election to the 9th District seat in 2010. She and Rick Gray won the August 24 primary election They then defeated Democrat Shirley McAlister in the November 2 general election.[12][13]

Arizona House of Representatives, District 9 General Election (2010)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Debbie Lesko (R) 32,423
Green check mark transparent.png Rick Gray (R) 28,459
Shirley McAlister (D) 20,249
Arizona House of Representatives, District 9 Republican Primary (2010)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Debbie Lesko (R) 13,638
Green check mark transparent.png Rick Gray (R) 8,558
Diane M. Douglas (R) 7,763

2008

See also: Arizona House of Representatives elections, 2008

On November 4, 2008, Lesko and Rick Murphy were elected to the 9th District Seat in the Arizona House of Representatives, defeating opponents Sheri Van Horsen (D) and Shawn Hutchinson (D).[14]

Lesko raised $74,042 for the campaign, Murphy raised $21,810, Van Horsen raised $73,107, and Hutchinson raised $36,543.[15]

Arizona State House, District 9 (2008)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Debbie Lesko (R) 37,762
Green check mark transparent.png Rick Murphy (R) 35,912
Sheri Van Horsen (D) 28,683
Shawn Hutchinson (D) 28,425

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Lesko is available dating back to 2008. Based on available campaign finance records, Lesko raised a total of $160,918 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 23, 2013.[16]

Debbie Lesko's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Arizona State House, District 21 Won $47,679
2010 Arizona State House, District 9 Won $39,197
2008 Arizona State House, District 9 Won $74,042
Grand Total Raised $160,918

2012

Lesko won election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2012. During that election cycle, Lesko raised a total of $47,679.
Arizona House of Representatives 2012 election - Campaign Contributions
Top contributors to Debbie Lesko's campaign in 2012
Pinnacle West$1,736
Arizona Chamber Of Commerce & Industry$500
Cox Communications$500
Salt River Project$500
Arizona Association Of Realtors$500
Total Raised in 2012$47,679
Source:Follow the Money

2010

Lesko won re-election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2010. During that election cycle, Lesko raised a total of $39,197.

2008

Lesko won election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2008. During that election cycle, Lesko raised a total of $74,042.

Scorecards

See also: State legislative scorecards and State legislative scorecards in Arizona

Legislative scorecards are used to evaluate elected public officials based on voting record. Some scorecards are created by political advocacy groups with a focus on specific issues, while others are developed by newspapers and are broad in scope. Scorecards are meant to be used as a tool for voters to have a quick picture of whether their views align with a particular legislator's record.

Because scorecards can be specific to particular issues or general to a state’s legislative term, for example, each report should be considered on its own merits. Each entity that publishes these reports uses different methodologies and definitions for the terms used.

An overview for scorecards in all 50 states can be found on this page. To contribute to the list of Arizona scorecards, email suggestions to scorecards@ballotpedia.org.

Please see our writing guidelines if you would like to add results from an individual scorecard to this legislator's profile.

2014

In 2014, the 51st Arizona State Legislature was in session from January 13 to April 24.[17]

Legislators are scored on their stances on conservative fiscal policy.
Legislators are scored on their votes on ASBA's legislative priority bills.
Legislators are scored on their stances on animals and animal protection.
Legislators are scored on their stances on secular policy.
Legislators are scored on their votes on "anti-environmental" and "anti-democracy" bills.

2013

In 2013, the 51st Arizona State Legislature was in session from January 14 to June 14.[17]

Legislators are scored on their stances on conservative fiscal policy.
Legislators are scored on their votes on bills related to small business.
Legislators are scored on "their support of principles of limited constitutional government."
Legislators are scored on their stances on animals and animal protection.
Legislators are scored on their stances on secular policy.
Legislators are scored on their votes on "anti-environmental" and "anti-democracy" bills.

Endorsements

2014

In 2014, Lesko's endorsements included the following:[18]

  • Arizona Police Association
  • Arizona Chamber of Commerce & Industry
  • Arizona Association of Realtors
  • Arizona Nurses Association
  • Arizona Fraternal Order of Police

  • AZ Right to Life
  • Arizona State Contractors Coalition
  • Professional Firefighters of Arizona
  • Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce
  • Arizona Petroleum Marketers Association

Personal

Lesko is married and has three children.

Recent news

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See also

External links

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References