July 2019 Newsletter

Why We Need to Fight

The first Democratic debates have now aired, and we are getting our first glimpse at our presidential nominee. As we look at our diverse field of candidates, though, we must not lose sight of the highly consequential politics in our state.

What does it mean for us when there is a Republican majority legislature in Arizona? Of the 320 bills signed into law by Gov. Ducey during the 2019 legislative session:

  • Only eight Democratic-sponsored bills (2.5 percent) were signed
  • Yet Democrats hold 13 seats in the state senate (43 percent)
  • And 29 seats in the state house (48 percent)

This means that Democratic voters of Arizona continue to be disenfranchised as the narrow Republican majority hamstrings our elected representatives.

Republican-control means that bills like the Equal Rights Amendment did not get heard. And criminal justice reform bills supported by our party did not get a fair hearing. They were:

  • HB2270 which sought to address Arizona’s so-called truth-in- sentencing requirements 
  • HB2245 would have provided greater discretion to judges to reduce mandatory minimum sentences
  • HB2362 proposed to give judges discretion to seal defendants’ criminal records

Also, Sen. Juan Mendez’s (D-LD26) SB1201 sought to require schools to post the vaccination rate for their student body on the school’s website. This too received no formal consideration in our Republican-controlled legislature. 

Arizona Democrats must keep in mind that our fight has to include supporting and voting for our Legislative candidates in the 2020 election. Only when this happens will real change occur at home.

Highlights of Our June Meeting

Adrian Fontes, Maricopa County Recorder, gave us a breakdown of the many ways he is making voting in our state is as painless as possible while ensuring that legitimate ballots are verified and tabulated.

Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes

He spoke of how his office is making in-person voting faster by reducing voter check-in times by 75 percent. Adrian also addressed the controversy over the way his office continued to verify (“cure”) and count valid, timely  ballots after election day. 

The state Republican Party had sued him to stop the tabulation in hopes that they might salvage a Senate win for Martha McSally. The county recorders and the state GOP eventually reached a settlement in which they agreed that all counties would uniformly allow more time for signature verification as Maricopa had done. He noted his efforts to ensure our sacred right to have our votes counted will continue to be protected under his tenure.

Legislative Update

While the abysmal passage rate of Democrat-sponsored bills is a great reason to stay energized for turning the state blue, our own Rep. Jennifer Pawlik gave some encouraging words about Democratic accomplishments during the legislative session. 

For example, a bill she supported lengthening the statute of limitations on reporting child abuse did pass. Jennifer also worked very hard on the passage of the bill to get more counselors in Arizona classrooms. 

Yes, these laws just don’t impact those of us in Chandler, Sun Lakes and Gilbert but all of Arizona. This illustrates that when you support and elect Democrats from our district, the positive effects ripple throughout the entire state.

June Highlights

Great turnout for our canvass. Thank you volunteers!
U.S. Rep. Greg Stanton addresses LD17 Dems at the Purple-to-Blue fundraiser. And of course we always have a table to collects signatures and donations.
Two successful canvasses in June. Thank you volunteers!

LD17

Meetings begin at 7 p.m. the first Tuesday of each month. (Doors open at 6:30 p.m.) The meeting is held at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 769 Union Hall, 220 N. William Dillard Dr., Gilbert  85233. Next meeting is July 2

Speakers: Rachel Yanof, ED, Achieve 60; LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

Sun Lakes Dems:   

Meetings begin at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Sun Lakes Country Club (25601 E. Sun Lakes Blvd. N.), Navajo Room. Next meeting is July 8.Speakers: Out Law Dirty Money Initiative; Rachel Yanof, ED, Achieve 60; Jen Buck, ED of All Hands Arizona; 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

The Sun Lakes Democratic Club collects non-perishable food items and cash for Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank. Please bring your dollar-for- dollar, tax-deductible contributions to the Drop Off Area in the west parking lot from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Ask for a receipt. In May, 48 pounds of food and $90 in cash were donated, bringing this year’s totals, so far, to 502 pounds of food and $298 in cash.

We appreciate all you do. 

Upcoming Events

  • Canvassing Training Tuesday, July 2, 6pm – 7pm (prior to July’s LD meeting) IBEW, 220 N. William Dillard Dr., Gilbert  
  • PC Training Saturday, July 20, 10am – 12:30pm MCDP HQ, 2914 N. Central Avenue (NW Corner of Thomas)
  • Maricopa County Democratic Party Summer Convention, Saturday, July 27 12:30pm – 4pm, The Madison Center for the Arts, 5601 N 16th St, Phoenix

Saturday Canvasses — 10am, one Saturday a month thru Sept. 
Sunday Canvasses – 10am, one Sunday a month thru Sept.
Gather at Valley of the Sun Real Estate, 290 S Alma School Rd, Ste. 15, Chandler. Drivers and canvassers needed. 
Sign up for either Saturday or Sunday

School Supplies Needed Operation Back to School Chandler helps provide needed essentials for Chandler District school children that may not be able to start school without these supplies. Please bring items, which will be distributed in July, to our monthly meeting on July 2. Here’s what’s needed. 

Mark Your Calendar

  •  LD17 Dems meeting will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 6
  • The Sun Lakes meeting will be held on Monday, Aug. 12


June 2019 Newsletter

Arizona Budget Fails, Again,
To Adequately Fund Education

In the early hours last Tuesday morning, budget debates ended with Republicans rejecting every Democratic proposal and ending the Arizona legislative session for the year. Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman commented on the outcome:

“This year, the state made some movements in the right direction by funding several K-12 education initiatives, including giving schools more money to spend on new counselors, the next installment of the promised 20×2020 teacher raises, and increased funding to address our teacher shortage by training the next generation of educators. However, it is disheartening to see another tax cut of nearly $400 million when Arizona’s education spending remains among the lowest in the nation.”


On the Arizona House floor, our Rep. Jennifer Pawlik requested funds for items such as outdated text books and support staff raises, but Republicans said no. 

We thank Jennifer for her stamina and unwavering dedication in serving the interests of LD17 constituents, who for the first time had a Democrat and a woman representing them in Arizona Legislature.

Democrats Everywhere!

You have probably noticed a large number of Democrats are running for president. The number of candidates running, however, is not expected to impact our likelihood of winning. It will still require lots of volunteer effort to defeat Trump in the 2020 election. But while candidates are highlighting issues they are especially passionate about, this process will help us know the candidate’s values and how they align to the Democratic party and its values of:

  • Minority inclusion 
  • Expanding access to healthcare and education
  • Making sure that women maintain bodily and reproductive autonomy
  • Having humane, fact-based immigration policy
  • Leading in forward-thinking environmental and foreign policy

Election Meddling and Possible Impeachment

Arizona’s own U.S. Rep. Greg Stanton, who represents a portion of LD17 and is a member of the House Judiciary Committee, recently issued a statement of support for opening a House impeachment inquiry:

“The Special Counsel’s redacted report detailed Russia’s sweeping attack on America’s democracy. Yet the President has refused to defend our nation and leaves us vulnerable to further attack. In fact, to this day, the President curiously accepts Russian President Vladimir Putin’s denials of interference at face value. The Special Counsel also uncovered significant evidence that the President obstructed justice but was prohibited by Department of Justice policy from filing charges. If the evidence the Special Counsel discovered is accurate, I believe it surpasses the Constitutional threshold of high crimes and misdemeanors.”

Rep. Stanton is currently joined by 52 other House Democrats, and one Republican, in calling for such an inquiry.

LD17 Chair Takes Leave of Absence

Our Chair Jacob Schmitt is taking a three-month leave-of-absence from his leadership role in LD 17 for professional reasons. 
As a result, the Executive Board of the LD 17 Democrats will provide leadership during this time. So through Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019, please direct all concerns and questions to our district’s email: azld17democrats@gmail.com and they will assist you. Also, First Vice Chair Carol Maas will lead our monthly meetings.


May Highlights

Az Democratic Party Vice Chair Jevin Hodge (left) leads us in a cheer at the monthly meeting. He says LD17 will be key to winning Maricopa County in 2020. 
Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, who at our monthly meeting described her office as underfunded, later saw more cuts in services, including election security, when the legislature passed its budget. 

LD17

Meetings begin at 7 p.m. the first Tuesday of each month. (Doors open at 6:30 p.m.) The meeting is held at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 769 Union Hall, 220 N. William Dillard Dr., Gilbert  85233. Next meeting is June 4.

Speakers: Adrian Fontes, Maricopa County Recorder; and a wrap-up of the legislative session from LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

Sun Lakes Dems

Meetings begin at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Sun Lakes Country Club (25601 E. Sun Lakes Blvd. N.), Navajo Room. Next meeting is June 10.

Speakers: Jeanne Casteen, candidate for Maricopa County Superintendent of Public Instruction; and a wrap-up of the legislative session from LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

The Sun Lakes Democratic Club collects non-perishable food items and cash for Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank. Please bring your dollar-for- dollar, tax-deductible contributions to the Drop Off Area in the west parking lot from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Ask for a receipt. In April, 81 pounds of food and $43 in cash were donated, bringing this year’s totals, so far, to 454 pounds of food and $208 in cash.

Upcoming Events

  • Tuesday, June 4, 6-7 pm: Black Engagement Committee (BEC) — MCDP, 2914 N Central (NW Corner of Thomas Road)
  • Thursday, June 6 –  LD 17 Fundraiser – 6 to 8pm, Old Spaghetti Factory, Chandler Fashion Center. Featuring Congressman Greg Stanton and Rep. Jennifer Pawlik. Sign up on Facebook or Eventbrite
  • Wednesday, June 19, 6-8 pm: Deputy Registrar Training — IBEW  in Gilbert. Sign up here.
  • June 26/27 (Wed/Thr) 5pm:  Sun Lakes Democratic Club Presidential Debate Watch parties — Sun Lakes Country Club, Sun Lakes, in the Navajo Room. Doors open at 5 p.m. Tickets are $4 @ night and RSVP to Judi.
  • June 26/27 (Wed/Thr) Maricopa County Democratic Party will also be hosting Presidential Debate Watch Parties at Harkins Theater, Tempe Town Marketplace. Tickets are $13 @ night. RSVP at maricopadems.org

Saturday Canvasses

Saturday Canvasses — 10am, one Saturday a month thru Sept. 
Sunday Canvasses – 10am, one Sunday a month thru Sept.

Gather at Valley of the Sun Real Estate, 290 S Alma School Rd, Ste. 15, Chandler. Drivers and canvassers needed. 

Sign up for either Saturday or Sunday.

School Supplies Needed

Operation Back to School Chandler helps provide needed essentials for Chandler District school children that may not be able to start school without these supplies. Please bring items, which will be distributed in July, to either our monthly meeting on June 4 and/or our Fundraiser on June 6. Thank you!

Boxes of 24 CrayonsPackages of Washable Markers
Pink ErasersPencil Boxes/Pencil Pouches
Glue SticksRulers
Wide-Ruled Spiral NotebooksWide Ruled Paper
Twin Pocket FoldersNumber 2 Pencils
Blue or Black PensHighlighters
College Ruled Spiral NotebooksCollege Ruled Paper
Index CardsFlash Drives
Composition Books

Mark Your Calendar 

LD17 Dems meeting will be held on Tuesday, July 2
The Sun Lakes meeting will be held on Monday, July 8

May 2019 Newsletter

Arizona Government Let-Down!

The Red for Ed and Save Our Schools initiatives have done an outstanding job of highlighting the neglect and inequity of Arizona’s educational systems and financing. However, over the last 10 years we have also seen numerous examples of neglect and attempts to dismantle Arizona’s state agencies since the Republicans took control of the Arizona Governor’s Office.

This includes frequent examples of individuals placed in administrative leadership positions to oversee the state’s agencies and departments who lack experience and accountability. Those appointed by Gov. Doug Ducey have been especially concerning.

Here’s a walk down memory lane for those of you who may not recall the wholly unqualified administrators of the Ducey Administration:

  • Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections – Director Dona Markley was forced to resign after questionable termination practices of ADJC staff.
  • Arizona Department of Economic Security – Director Tim Jeffries was terminated after mass firings of employees and a statewide investigation also discovered that Jeffries had purchased significant amounts of guns and ammunition for the human service agency.
  • Arizona Lottery – Director Tony Bouie resigned when allegations he used his state vehicle for personal purposes. In addition, there were several complaints of sexual discrimination under his leadership.
  • Arizona Parks Department – Director Sue Black was finally terminated after evidence arose showing that she had approved developments in violation of laws that protected Native American sites and artifacts – despite guidance from staff advising otherwise. This was after she had repeatedly been accused of berating staff and interacting with staff while intoxicated.

Now we hear significant gross mismanagement and safety concerns at the Arizona Department of Corrections. It was discovered the Lewis Prison has had problems with doors failing to lock leading to staff and inmate injury. These concerns piggy-back the other issues Director Charles Ryan has had including a botched death penalty and a major lawsuit regarding lack of healthcare services for inmates.  

Continuing to appoint individuals who are driven by reducing regulation, oversight and funding for Arizona’s public institutions will result in more damage. I highlight these areas because we are easily distracted by the President and the ineptness of his administration; however, we have the very same mismanagement and disregard for ethics in Arizona.

One major way to impact Arizona’s government is to focus on electing a Democratic legislature. Please join me and the LD 17 Democrats. We know our district is key to turning Arizona blue and although we are still 19 months away from the election – the more we do now, the better shape we’ll be in by November 2020!

Sincerely –
Jacob Schmitt
Chair, LD 17 Democrats

April Highlights


Thanks to our state committee people who traveled to Tucson for the Az Democratic Party State Committee Meeting. Highlight of the event actually occurred during lunch when U.S. Senate candidate Mark Kelly and Gabby Giffords stopped by our LD17 table. Mark later spoke at the meeting.  

Calendar of Events

LD17: 

Meetings begin at 7 p.m. the first Tuesday of each month. (Doors open at 6:30 p.m.) The meeting is held at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 769 Union Hall, 220 N. William Dillard Dr., Gilbert  85233. Next meeting is May 7.

Speakers: Reps from March for Our Lives and Outlaw Dirty Money to discuss their initiatives; and a legislative update from LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

Sun Lakes Dems:   

Meetings begin at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Sun Lakes Country Club (25601 E. Sun Lakes Blvd. N.), Navajo Room. 

Next meeting is May 13.
Speakers: Steven Slugocki, MCDP Chair; and legislative update from LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

The Sun Lakes Democratic Club collects non-perishable food items for Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank. Please bring your tax-deductible contributions to the Drop-Off Area in the west parking lot from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Ask for a receipt. We appreciate all you do.

Upcoming Events

  • Saturday, May 18 – Mofford-Warner Dinner – Arizona Democratic Party- Phoenix Convention Center, 100 N 3rd St., 5pm- 8pm.
    • Featuring Democratic Presidential Candidate Julian Castro. PCs are eligible for a discount. To RSVP, either visit ADP Facebook or ADP webpage.

Sunday Canvasses – 10am-12:30pm, one Sunday a month June thru Sept. Gather at Valley of the Sun Real Estate, 290 S Alma School Rd, Ste. 15, Chandler. Drivers and canvassers needed. 

Canvassing 101 materials — street map, candidate information and LD 17 brochure. And thanks to Suzanne McCormick and Julie Ray for updating and giving a bold new look to our brochure.
Sign up on Facebook or contact.

Mark Your Calendar

  • LD 17 Dems will meet on Tuesday, June 4
  • Thursday, June 6 –  LD 17 Fundraiser – 6 to 8pm, Old Spaghetti Factory, Chandler Fashion Center. Featuring Congressman Greg Stanton and Rep. Jennifer Pawlik. (More information will be released soon via email and social media.)
  • The Sun Lakes meeting will be held on Monday, June 10

April 2019 Newsletter

Reaching Out to Our Communities

Over the weekend, I had the pleasure of attending the Precinct Committeeperson (PC) Training sponsored and led by the Maricopa County Democratic Party in our very own LD 17. Part of the training required that each of us understand and communicate what draws us to the Democratic Party.

Listening to the different reasons people are drawn to the party is inspiring and underscores the diversity and depth of experience we share in being Democrats. Taking those reasons and reaching out to our neighbors and communities is key to engaging additional voters in our district.

LD 17 is extremely fortunate that we are made up of such diverse, talented and invested individuals.

As we demonstrated leading up to the 2018 election, we must devote time and people to successfully represent and reflect the values of all of our diverse communities in LD 17. 
So, we’re pulling teams together now to help with:
voter registration
permanent early voter list enrollment
social media messaging
ways to engage and involve our neighbors

The more individuals we get involved, the easier it becomes to divide tasks and work with others to get our goals accomplished. I have met some of the most inspiring and fun individuals by working in our own, local Democratic Party.

Through your support, Arizona now is closer than ever to having Democratic majorities in the Legislature. LD 17 did the hard work to elect Rep. Jennifer Pawlik to the State House. Yet, despite our big wins, we still aren’t in the majority – and bad bills, such as those supporting voter suppression and ignoring citizen initiatives, continue to get heard and moved forward.

To learn more about how you can take an active role in LD17 and Arizona politics, please reach out to me below. Or – join us at our monthly meetings, which are held the first Tuesday of every month at the IBEW Union Hall (220 N. William Dillard Dr., Gilbert – North of Elliot Road between McQueen & Arizona Avenues). Meetings start at 7pm and the doors open at 6:30 for networking and outreach.

My Take on the Mueller Report

In other news, folks are disheartened and upset by the letter that Attorney General Barr issued on the Mueller Report. 

Here are my thoughts on it:

1 – Barr’s letter isn’t the actual report. So, much like I told people before the report was issued – be patient! It sounds like we’ll be able to see (at least parts of) the report in mid-April. All we know for certain is the Mueller has completed his report and that no further charges will come from the special counsel.

2 – Barr is already backtracking on the letter he issued by saying it shouldn’t be interpreted as a summary of the report. Again – we need to wait to see the actual report.

3 – Regardless of what comes from the report – additional investigations and hearings will have to occur in Congress. It’s unlikely hearings and then Congress reaching a conclusion will occur prior to the next election (which is only 18 months away). Instead, we must focus on selecting the best possible candidate to beat Trump in 2020. 

 4 – The Special Counsel’s investigation DID have an impact – there were 34 indictments of individuals and three companies, many with direct links or ties to Trump and/or his campaign. Not that there is much question about what historians will say about Trump, but this investigation isn’t helping his image or the impact his businesses, campaign and presidency is having on our country.

Help us by joining the fight – get involved! We are making a difference!
Sincerely -Jacob Schmitt
Chair, LD 17 Democrats

Calendar of Events

LD17: Meetings begin at 7 p.m. the first Tuesday of each month. (Doors open at 6:30 p.m.) 
The meeting is held at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 769 Union Hall, 220 N. William Dillard Dr., Gilbert  85233. 

Next meeting is April 2.
Speakers: Kathy Hoffman, State Superintendent of Public Instruction; Constables Karyn Lathan and Carolyn Lane; and a legislative update from LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

Sun Lakes Dems:   Meetings begin at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Sun Lakes Country Club (25601 E. Sun Lakes Blvd. N.), Navajo Room.
•  Next meeting is April 8.
•  Speakers: Anne Schneider, author of the Arizona Legistative Alert, a weekly update on bills and issues; and legislative update from LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

The Sun Lakes Democratic Club collects non-perishable food items for Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank. Please bring your tax-deductible contributions to the Drop-Off Area in the west parking lot from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Ask for a receipt. W e appreciate all you do. 

Upcoming Events

Sunday, April 7 – Canvass – 1pm – 3731 S. Arizona Ave., Chandler.
Meet at the parking lot.
Drivers and canvassers needed.

Saturday, April 13  – Arizona Democratic Party – State Committee Meeting
Rincon High School, 421 N. Arcadia Ave., Tucson.
Registration is from 8:45am to 1pm; Caucuses from 9am to Noon; Plenary begins at 1pm.

Wednesday, April 24 – LD 17 Democrats Spring PC Meeting – 6:30pm – IBEW Union Hall. All PCs and those interested in becoming a PC should attend. Register here.

Mark Your Calendar
LD 17 Dems will meet again on Tuesday, May 7
The Sun Lakes meeting will be held on Monday, May 13

March 2019 Newsletter

Remember, Together We Win!

Just like you, I am having a hard time keeping up with all of the people who are announcing their run for President in 2020. In some ways, it is exciting to see the investment of individuals hoping to achieve our country’s highest office. In other ways, it’s making me somewhat nervous – after all, look what has happened to the Republican Party when they had such a large influx of candidates in 2016. 

With the addition of so many candidates, I’m also hearing and seeing a lot more divisiveness among my fellow Democrats. People are being critical of each other and the candidates they are supporting. Fair vetting of candidates is a good thing; it helps further our party platform and inevitably our democracy. However, making negative attacks and personal comments about the candidates and each other is one sure way to guarantee another Trump win.

A few tips I would like to pass along to you as we rev up for the 2020 Presidential election season:

1 – Take the time to learn about each of the candidates. Check out their websites, listen to their interviews and if you have the opportunity, attend their in-person events. As a swing state we’re likely to see and hear from most, if not all, of the candidates.

2 – If you voice your opinion – keep it focused on why you support a candidate. Posting or stating negative things about the other candidates doesn’t do anything to further the discussion and often leads into other negative areas. Discussing the great qualities about your candidate is always the best advice!

3 – If all else fails, keep focused on local and state issues. We need to keep involved and up-to-date with happenings at Chandler City Council, Gilbert Town Council, Chandler and Gilbert School Boards, and the Arizona Legislature. Attending meetings and hearings, and keeping involved is key to helping ensure Democrats succeed.

4 – One of the best ways you can get information and to influence the party is to become a Precinct Committeeperson – or PC. A PC is the foundation of the Democratic Party. These individuals are the representatives of their local precincts and ensure that their unique perspectives and issues are being addressed. While PC elections are over, you could still be an appointed PC.

By becoming a PC you get:

  • Access to more information about issues and policy than is found in the mainstream media
  • Insight into what is really going on inside the Party and the government
  • Opportunities to hear and meet your elected officials and candidates on a personal basis
  • The chance to be heard more effectively than if you are a registered voter
  • Participation in the decision-making process in the Party
  • To belong to a social network at the precinct, LD, county and state levels with people who share your values and goals
  • To meet new, like-minded friends in your neighborhood – and become an integral, active part of it
  • Experience that prepares you for greater responsibility within the Party in the future.

For more information on becoming a PC – feel free to contact me as outlined below.  
Sincerely –Jacob SchmittChair, LD 17 Democrats

February Highlights


LD17 volunteers and our Rep. Jennifer Pawlik kickoff the first canvass of 2019. This is the best way to meet voters, now constituents, so please sign up for a future event. Both canvassers and drivers are needed.
County Recorder Adrian Fontes is greeted by co-club president Mary Bischoff Knape at the Feb. meeting of Sun Lakes Democratic Club.

Calendar of Events

LD17: Meetings begin at 7 p.m. the first Tuesday of each month. (Doors open at 6:30 p.m.) The meeting is held at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 769 Union Hall, 220 N. William Dillard Dr., Gilbert  85233. Next meeting is March 5.
Speakers: Heather Macre, CAWCD Board Member on Arizona’s water issues; Garrett Archer will be providing LD 17 specific data from the 2018 election; and a legislative update from LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik

Sun Lakes Dems:   
Meetings begin at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Sun Lakes Country Club (25601 E. Sun Lakes Blvd. N.), Navajo Room. Next meeting is March 11.Speakers: State Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman; and a legislative update from LD 17’s own, Rep. Jennifer Pawlik
The Sun Lakes Democratic Club collects non-perishable food items for Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank. Please bring your tax-deductible contributions to the Drop-Off Area in the west parking lot from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Ask for a receipt.  In January, we donated 128 pounds of food and raised $45 in cash for the food bank. We  appreciate all you do.  

Upcoming Events
Friday, March 8, 11am – 2pm – Arizona Women in Blue Event hosted by the Arizona Federation of Democratic Women. Celebrating the wins of Arizona Women, including LD 17’s Rep. Jennifer Pawlik. Held at because – Space for Life, 3419 E University Dr., Phoenix  85034.
Tickets are $20.
Register here

LD 17 Democrats are looking for volunteers to help set-up, staff and take-down our booth at the Annual Chandler Ostrich Festival. The event is at Tumbleweed Park in Chandler on March 8-10. Please sign up for shift. If you have any questions, contact myself or the following: Sarah Fanning (sgfanning@gmail.com) or Tom Griffith (tomgriffith947@gmail.com).

Mark Your Calendar

  • LD 17 Dems will meet on Tuesday, April 2.
  • Wednesday, April 3 – Maricopa County Democratic Party’s Diamond Event – more info to come 
  • The Sun Lakes Meeting will be held on Monday, April 8.

January 2019 Newsletter

Restarting the Clock

Welcome to 2019, a year in which Democrats in Arizona will influence policies and make a positive difference for all of us. Thanks to our groundwork over the last two years, some outstanding Democrats have been elected. And I am really looking forward to our newly elected officials taking the helm and working to implement the Democratic values we all fought so hard for this past election cycle.   

The next step is ensuring that we keep ourselves and our message visible – and to do that, we have to remain involved.  

Here are some ways you can remain involved this month:

1 – As of this writing, Arizona Legislature members have already dropped 48 bills ahead of the opening day session on Monday, Jan.14. (Typically, more than 1,000 bills are introduced each session.) To stay informed on these bills and share your thoughts with legislators, be sure to sign up for Request to Speak (RTS). The comments you share help your representatives make informed decisions when voting.  To use RTS, you have to create an account – however, it must be done at the Legislature. Once created, you can log in from anywhere to track and respond to all of the bills being debated this session. If you can’t make it to the Capitol, the Arizona Advocacy Network will assist by entering your information there. We’ll have the Network’s Morgan Dick at our January meeting to discuss this process. In the meantime, here’s more info.


LD17 Dems Chairman Jacob Schmitt with our newly elected Rep. Jennifer Pawlik and Rep. Mitzi Epstein, re-elected from LD18. 


2 – The Trump Administration has been dropping families seeking asylum off at churches in Phoenix without any resources or support. In partnership with the Maricopa County Democratic Party, groups are  collecting items to support these families. They are in need of warm, clean clothing, shoes, socks, underwear, baby diapers and wipes, feminine hygiene products, blankets, and backpacks. You can drop any items off at the MCDP offices, 2914 N. Central Ave., Phoenix.

A Phoenix church accepts asylum seekers (from ABC 15)

3 – For the third consecutive year, the LD 17 Democrats will be marching in the East Valley Martin Luther King, Jr., Day Parade in Mesa. The event is Monday, Jan. 21, from 10 a.m. until the parade ends. More information will be shared as we get the final details; however, if you are interested in participating, please contact First Vice Chair Carol Maas at: camaas@aol.com. We would love to have a great turnout for this event. Rep. Pawlik will be joining us in the parade!

4 – And finally, I encourage you to become a Precinct Committeeperson – or PC, the foundation of the Democratic Party. As representatives of their local precincts, PCs ensure that the perspectives and issues of their neighbors are being addressed. Elections for PCs are over, but if you are interested, you can now be appointed. This is the best entryway for involvement in the Democratic Party. By becoming a PC, you get:

  • Access to more information about issues and policy than is found in the mainstream media
  • Insight into what is really going on inside the Party and the government
  • Opportunities to hear and meet your elected officials and candidates on a personal basis
  • The chance to be heard more effectively than if you are a registered voter
  • Participation in the decision-making process in the Party
  • To belong to a social network at the precinct, LD, county and state levels with people who share your values and goals
  • To meet new, like-minded friends in your neighborhood – and take an active role
  • Experience that prepares you for greater responsibility within the Party in the future

For more information on becoming a PC – feel free to contact me. I hope you’ll join us!
Wishing you a safe and prosperous 2019!
Sincerely -Jacob Schmitt
Chair, LD 17 Democrats

Calendar of Events

  • The Arizona Democratic Party will host its Reorganization and Regularly Scheduled Meeting on Saturday, Jan. 26, at Carl Hayden High School, 3333 W. Roosevelt, Phoenix, 85009. Registration is from 8:45 am to 1pm, Caucus Meetings are from 9am to noon, and the Plenary Session begins at 1pm. Only elected State Committee Members can vote – but anyone can attend.

LD17: Meetings begin at 7 p.m. the first Tuesday of each month. (Doors open at 6:30 p.m.) The meeting is held at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 769 Union Hall, 220 N. William Dillard Dr., Gilbert  85233. Next meeting is Jan. 8.
Speakers: Az Rep. Jennifer Pawlik, LD 17; Az Rep. Mitzi Epstein, LD18; and Morgan Dick, Arizona Advocacy Network

Sun Lakes Dems:   Meetings begins at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Sun Lakes Country Club (25601 E. Sun Lakes Blvd. N.), Navajo Room. Next meeting is Jan. 14.Speakers: Az Rep. Jennifer Pawlik, LD 17; Morgan Dick, Arizona Advocacy Network; and Heather Macre, elected Director, Board of the Central Arizona Water Conservation District

The Sun Lakes Democratic Club collects non-perishable food items for Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank. Please bring your tax-deductible contributions to the Drop Off Area in the west parking lot from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Ask for a receipt. In November, 33 pounds of food and $30 in cash were received. The yearly totals, so far, are 942.50 pounds of food and $468 in cash. We appreciate all you do.  .Mark

Your Calendar

  • LD 17 Dems will meet on Tuesday, Feb. 5. 
  • The Sun Lakes Meeting will be held on Monday, Feb. 11. 

December 2018 Newsletter

Hard Work Pays Off!

The 2018 Election is definitely one for the record books. With hard-work, dedication and determination, LD17 has elected its first ever Democrat to the Arizona House and LD17’s first ever WOMAN in the Legislature!!! Congratulations to Rep.-elect Jennifer Pawlik for her first-place finish for the Arizona House of Representatives.

Jennifer collected 46,874 votes (354 votes over her second-place opponent). We are so proud of Jennifer and her success. She will do a fantastic job representing the LD17 constituents on both the Education and Judiciary committees. We also owe a great deal of thanks and support to LD17’s own Steve Weichert. While he came up short (by only 1,744 votes) – he ran a strong race and helped move our district forward. In fact, LD17 was key in helping Kyrsten Sinema win the U.S. Senate seat – by taking 28 of 40 precincts to become the first woman to represent Arizona in the Senate. In addition, Sen.-elect Sinema becomes the first bisexual to be elected to the U.S. Senate.

Other election results of which LD17 should be proud include:
  • The election of Greg Stanton for Congressional District 9 (winning all 13 of his precincts)
  • The election of Katie Hobbs as the Arizona Secretary of State (winning 26 LD17 precincts)
  • The election of Kathy Hoffman as the Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction (winning 28 of LD17 precincts)
  • The election of Sandra Kennedy to the Arizona Corporation Commission (winning 22 of LD17 precincts)
  • The election of Lindsay Love to the Chandler Unified School District Board
These wins show that LD17 Democrats – when we work together, can really have an impact at every level – locally, statewide and nationally! On behalf of the LD17 Democrats – thank you for all you did to help make these wins possible. Your willingness to donate your time, speak to others in the community and provide financial support, made this a very successful election cycle.
 
To celebrate, we hope you will join us at our Holiday Event this Tuesday, Dec. 4 at West Alley BBQ in Downtown Chandler (111 W. Boston St.). The event starts at 6:30 p.m. and the district will provide appetizers. You are welcome to order dinner (the food is great – you’ll want to enjoy)!!
 
Our LD17 Elections
Last month we also held our Reorganization Meeting and the following individuals were elected to a two-year term for LD17:
  • Jacob Schmitt – Chair
  • Carol Maas – 1st Vice Chair
  • Julie Reid – 2nd Vice Chair
  • Deborah Matayabas – Secretary
  • Ajlan Kurdoglu – Treasurer
  • Clifton Smith – Sergeant at Arms
  • Nicolas Garcia – Young Democrat Representative
  • Mary & Weldon Knape – Sun Lakes Representatives
 
I would like to thank the preceding board members for their time and commitment to the LD17 Democrats – Andrew Danilewicz (former 2nd Vice Chair), Kathie Neffenger (former Secretary), Zak Ghali (former Young Democrat Rep), and Tom Amrhein (former Sun Lakes Rep). THANK YOU!!!
 
In addition, the following individuals were elected to represent the LD17 Democrats at the Arizona Democratic State Committee (Not all are pictured):
 
Nelson “Craig” Campbell; Salauddin Choudhury; Monroe Copeland; Paula Feely; Richard Feely; Nicolas Garcia; Zak Ghali; Thomas Griffith; Richard Jones; Janet Kiefer; Mary Knape; Ajlan Kurdoglu;  Penni Lawson; Carol Maas; Deborah Matayabas; James “Chris” Matayabas; Suzanne McCormick; Julie Reid; Jacob Schmitt; Shaikh Shams; Clifton Smith; Roy Tatem, Jr.; Howard Ward; and Steven Weichert.
 
 
As you can see, even though the election is over, pieces are starting to fall into place as we prepare for the next election cycle. Enjoy your holiday season and rest up – because starting in January we will continue the momentum so we can hold onto our wins and add even more blue to LD17!!!
 
Happy Holidays to you and your family!
Sincerely –
Jacob Schmitt
Chair, LD17 Democrats
 
*  *  *
 
 

Calendar of Events

 
LD17: 
Holiday Event, Tuesday, Dec. 4 at West Alley BBQ in Downtown Chandler (111 W. Boston St.). The event starts at 6:30 p.m. and appetizers will be provided by the district.

 
Sun Lakes Dems:  
Meetings begins at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Sun Lakes Country Club (25601 E. Sun Lakes Blvd. N.), Navajo Room. Next meeting is Dec. 10 and will be a Holiday Event. 

Desserts will be served.
 
The Sun Lakes Democratic Club collects non-perishable food items for Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank. Please bring your tax-deductible contributions to the Drop Off Area in the west parking lot from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Ask for a receipt. 
 
In November, 33 pounds of food and $30 in cash were received. The yearly totals, so far, are 942.50 pounds of food and $468 in cash.
We appreciate all you do.  
 
Mark Your Calendar
  • The Maricopa County Democratic Party will hold its Reorganization Meeting on Saturday, Dec. 8 at Central High School, 4525 N Central Ave., Phoenix. Registration is from 11:45am – 1:45pm; meeting is from 2pm – 4:30pm. We will elect officers and review bylaws. Only elected PCs are eligible to run for office and vote. To vote, PCs must be registered before the 1:45pm deadline. To attend, please register here.
  • Due to the Jan. 1 holiday, the LD17 Dems will meet on Tuesday, Jan. 8.
  • The Sun Lakes Meeting will be held on Monday, Jan. 14.