|Arizona House of Representatives District 23|
|January 5, 2015|
|Years in position||7|
|Per diem||$35/day for the first 120 days of regular session and for special sessions and $10/day thereafter.|
|Elections and appointments|
|First elected||November 6, 2012|
|Next general||November 4, 2014|
|Term limits||Four consecutive terms|
|Bachelor's||New York University|
|Master's||Saint John's University|
- 1 Biography
- 2 Committee assignments
- 3 Issues
- 4 Elections
- 5 Campaign donors
- 6 Personal
- 7 Controversies
- 8 Recent news
- 9 External links
- 10 References
Kavanagh's professional experience includes working as a Professor of Criminal Justice at Scottsdale Community College, and serving as Director for the Administration of Justice Studies and Forensic Science Program.
At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Kavanagh served on the following committees:
|Arizona Committee Assignments, 2013|
|• Appropriations, Chair|
|• Budget, Chair|
|• Capital Review, 2013 Vice Chair|
|• Residual Contamination of Drug Properties|
In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Kavanagh served on these committees:
|Arizona Committee Assignments, 2011|
|• Appropriations, Chair|
|• Employment and Regulatory Affairs|
|• Capital Review, Vice Chair|
In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Kavanagh served on these committees:
|Arizona Committee Assignments, 2009|
|• Appropriations, Chair|
Kavanagh's sponsored bills include:
- HB 2026 - peace officers; firearms; school grounds
- HB 2031 - schools; contractors; fingerprint clearance cards
- HB 2400 - partial-birth abortions; definition
- HB 2439 - concealed weapons permit; safety course
For a full listed of sponsored bills see the House website.
Kavanagh's campaign website highlighted the following campaign themes:
- No Tax Increases
- Excerpt: "Representative Kavanagh opposes tax increases. In these difficult economic times government must allow the people to keep as much of their money as possible. Taking money from the private sector to unreasonably grow government will only slow down the recovery."
- Jobs Creation
- Excerpt: "Representative Kavanagh helped write and supported individual and business tax cuts and other incentives to stimulate the economy and create more jobs. These policies have made Arizona's economic comeback amoung the fastest in the nation."
- Fiscal Conservative
- Excerpt: "Representative Kavanagh is a strong fiscal conservative. As chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, he crafted budgets that cut over $3 billion in government spending and has opposed tax increases."
- Stop Illegal Immigration
- Excerpt: "Representative Kavanagh co-sponsored and helped write SB1070, Arizona's tough anti-illegal immigration law. Kavanagh also wrote the law requiring that all levels of government check for proof of legal presence before issuing anyone a license of any type"
- Quality Education
- Excerpt: "Representative Kavanagh believes that educationis the foundation of our future and should be properly funded with accountability and enforced standards. Whed education funding needed to be reduced due to the recession, Kavanagh kept most cuts out of the classroom."
The Goldwater Institute releases its "Legislative Report Card" annually for all Arizona legislators. This report card tracks how legislators voted on key votes and assigns them a letter grade based on how closely their votes agree with the Institute's positions. The primary values emphasized in the ratings are whether votes expand or restrict liberty.
Kavanagh received a score of 70 out of 100 in the 2012 report card for a grade of A- according to the Goldwater Institute’s grading scale. This score was 5 lower than his score on the 2011 report card. Kavanagh’s 70 in 2012 was tied for the 4th highest grade among all 60 Arizona State Representatives.
Medicaid expansion lawsuit
John Kavanagh 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.
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. 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.
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," 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.
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, hope to have expansion shut down before it officially goes live Jan. 1, 2014, with eligible residents beginning to enroll as early as Oct. 1.
Kavanagh won re-election in the 2012 election for Arizona House of Representatives District 23. He and incumbent Michelle Ugenti defeated Jennifer Petersen in the Republican primary on August 28, 2012. He won the general election on November 6, 2012.
|Arizona House of Representatives, District 23, General Election, 2012|
|Republican||John Kavanagh Incumbent||50.6%||68,527|
|Republican||Michele Ugenti Incumbent||49.4%||66,827|
|Arizona House of Representatives, District 23 Republican Primary, 2012|
|John Kavanagh Incumbent||41.3%||20,922|
|Michelle Ugenti Incumbent||35.7%||18,106|
Kavanagh won re-election to the 8th District seat in 2010. He and Michelle Ugenti won the August 24 primary election. They then defeated Democrat John Kriekard in the November 2 general election.
|Arizona House of Representatives, District 8 General Election (2010)|
|John Kavanagh (R)||42,867|
|Michelle Ugenti (R)||38,055|
|John Kriekard (D)||28,084|
|Arizona House of Representatives, District 8 Republican Primary (2010)|
|John Kavanagh (R)||17,256|
|Michelle Ugenti (R)||9,146|
|Michael Blaire (R)||5,680|
|Paula Pennypacker (R)||5,657|
|Ray Mahoubi (R)||2,582|
|Eric Ulis (R)||2,570|
Kavanagh raised $72,786 for the campaign, Reagan raised $82,856, and Rimmer raised $73,382.
|Arizona State House, District 8 (2008)|
|Michele Reagan (R)||54,780|
|John Kavanagh (R)||50,507|
|Stephanie Rimmer (D)||37,793|
Comprehensive donor information for Kavanagh is available dating back to 2006. Based on available campaign finance records, Kavanagh raised a total of $243,543 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 23, 2013.
|John Kavanagh's Campaign Contribution History|
|2012||Arizona State House, District 23||$45,693|
|2010||Arizona State House, District 8||$39,343|
|2008||Arizona State House, District 8||$72,786|
|2006||Arizona State House, District 8||$85,721|
|Grand Total Raised||$243,543|
2012Kavanagh won re-election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2012. During that election cycle, Kavanagh raised a total of $45,693.
|Arizona House of Representatives 2012 election - Campaign Contributions|
|Top contributors to John Kavanagh's campaign in 2012|
|Arizona Association of Realtors||$1,500|
|Salt River Project||$800|
|Arizona Chamber of Commerce & Industry||$500|
|Arizona Medical Association||$500|
|Total Raised in 2012||$45,693|
|Source:Follow the Money|
2010Kavanagh won re-election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2010. During that election cycle, Kavanagh raised a total of $39,343.
|Arizona House of Representatives 2010 election - Campaign Contributions|
|Top contributors to John Kavanagh's campaign in 2010|
|Barnes Jr, Stan O||$140|
|Hughes, Tracy V||$140|
|Total Raised in 2010||$39,343|
|Source:Follow the Money|
2008Kavanagh won re-election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2008. During that election cycle, Kavanagh raised a total of $72,786.
|Arizona House of Representatives 2008 election - Campaign Contributions|
|Top contributors to John Kavanagh's campaign in 2008|
|Flora, Royce T||$130|
|Barclay, Steven Calder||$130|
|Green, Michael Preston||$130|
|Boals, Richard L||$130|
|Total Raised in 2008||$72,786|
|Source:Follow the Money|
2006Kavanagh won election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2006. During that election cycle, Kavanagh raised a total of $85,721.
|Arizona House of Representatives 2006 election - Campaign Contributions|
|Top contributors to John Kavanagh's campaign in 2006|
|Dwyer, Robert R||$120|
|Total Raised in 2006||$85,721|
|Source:Follow the Money|
Kavanagh and his wife Linda have two children.
Kavanagh is a member of the American Legion, Civic Association, Community Center Volunteers, Fountain Hills Republican Club, Friends of the Chamber of Commerce, Historical Society, Scottsdale Republican Forum, and the Senior Services Board of Directors. 
The group Raise The Bar Arizona started a recall campaign against Kavanagh in March 2013 for allegedly breaking his campaign promises. Supporters of the recall were required to collect 16,920 signatures by July 22, 2013 in order to force a recall election. There were no reports of the outcome of the signature drive, however, and the campaign was assumed to have been abandoned.
This section displays the most recent stories in a google news search for the term "John + Kavanagh + Arizona + House" John Kavanagh News Feed
- Editorial: Kavanagh needs to learn there's more to research universities than ... - Arizona Daily Wildcat
- Scottsdale councilman to run for state House - Arizona Daily Star
- Legislator John Kavanagh Could Teach Panhandlers a Few Tricks, Like How to ... - Phoenix New Times
- John Kavanagh Defends His Trips to Commie China and Azerbaijan - Phoenix New Times
- Republican seeks to allow cuts in public pensions - Arizona Daily Sun
- Scottsdale Councilman Littlefield to run for state House - Arizona Republic
- Appropriations chair: AZ spending too much on unneeded college educations - Arizona Capitol Times
- State representative makes controversial comments on college - Arizona Daily Wildcat
- Our View: Paying for shortsighted decisions - Sierra Vista Herald
- Arizona Public Schools Want $330 Million in State Aid Restored - KNAU Arizona Public Radio
- John Kavanagh's campaign website
- Arizona House of Representatives - Representative John Kavanagh
- Project Vote Smart legislative profile
- Project Vote Smart profile
- Campaign Contributions: 2012, 2010, 2008, 2006
- Campaign website, Issues
- Mitt Romney for President, "Mitt Romney Announces Support of Additional Arizona Elected Officials," February 2, 2012
- Goldwater Institute "2012 Legislative Report Card for Arizona's 50th Legislature, First Regular Session," August 15, 2012
- Arizona Republic, "Goldwater Institute sues over Arizona Medicaid law," September 12, 2013
- Office of the Arizona Governor, "State of the State Addresss," January 14, 2013
- AZ Family.com, "Group files referendum to block Medicaid expansion," June 19, 2013
- Arizona Legislature, "Arizona Constitution - Article 3, Section 22," accessed September 15, 2013
- Arizona Secretary of State, "2010 Primary candidate list," accessed December 20, 2013
- Arizona Secretary of State, Official 2012 Primary Results
- Arizona Secretary of State, "2010 Primary results," accessed December 20, 2013
- Arizona Secretary of State, "General election results," accessed December 13, 2013
- 2008 general election results, Arizona
- Arizona House spending, 2008
- followthemoney.org, "Kavanagh, John," accessed May 23, 2013
- Project Vote Smart - Rep. Kavanagh
- azcentral.com, "Recall effort launched against Rep. John Kavanagh," March 25, 2013