Women dominated the Kingman Republican Men's Club luncheon on Monday.
Candidates for the Arizona House of Representatives are incumbent Nancy McLain of Bullhead City, incumbent Trish Groe of Lake Havasu City and newcomer to the political scene, Doris Goodale of Kingman. Each spoke for five minutes on the reasons they believe they are best qualified to represent their respective legislative districts.
Groe said she spends most of her time "killing ridiculously bad proposals that could make it into law."
She said 15 proposed new laws came up last year, and she voted against all of them.
"We don't need 15 new laws each year," she said. "For example, there was a universal health care bill that would have covered all Arizonans. But coupled with the temporary-worker bill, that would have been a disaster. It would have created greater problems."
She said she favors lowering the income requirements for families who truly need help, rather than raising those guidelines and including families that could afford to obtain health insurance by other means.
"There's too much 'go along to get along' attitude in the state capitol," Groe said. "Your elected officials' loyalties should be to the people who elected them, not to their friends and political allies."
Groe described herself as "a thorn in the side of my colleagues," but said those same legislators have come to respect her for her stance.
McLain said she has fought to keep Arizona's water for Arizonans and will continue to do so. "Nevada wants our water desperately," she said. "I will continue to fight to keep it for our citizens and for the growth our state is experiencing now and will continue to see in the future."
Among her other accomplishments are public restrooms in the tiny tourist town of Oatman.
"I'm really proud that I was able to help Oatman get public restrooms," she said. "Oatman sees about 400,000 tourists each year. I supported a 2-percent sales tax increase for Oatman that was defeated. It seemed to me the best way to pay for public restrooms was to have the tourists who benefit the most pay for them. But then Oatman was able to obtain a Legacy Foundation grant because not having public restrooms was a public safety issue. A matching grant from the Department of Commerce completed the project."
McLain also addressed the political attacks launched against her by the local Minutemen. "They say I'm soft on illegal immigration," she said. "They cite the fact that I voted against the trespass bill. I voted against it because I felt it was unconstitutional and unenforceable. We need to pass bills that are effective, not just pass legislation that shows we are making an effort."
She also is endorsed by the National Rifle Association for her pro-2nd Amendment stance, and refers to herself as "adamantly pro-life."
"I have a 100-percent voting record on those issues," she said.
She also has received state Rep. Russell Pearce's endorsement based on her efforts to stop the flood of illegal aliens, stop reckless spending, standing up for traditional American values and for being a "friend of the taxpayer."
Goodale is making her first foray into the political world. She was a probation officer for 34 years and said she believes the state "needs legislators who will roll up their sleeves and say 'let's get to work.'"
She said her financial knowledge is one of her strong suits, along with her personal code of ethics. "I've prepared state and county budgets and grant programs," she said. "I'm a conservative and I'm principled. I live by the strictest code of conduct. I will be your legislator.
"I have tremendous social capital throughout the state. We'll become a team. I'll hear your complaints at the state level and do all I can to communicate them to my future colleagues."
She said illegal immigration is a public safety issue. "We must close our borders," she said. "Illegal aliens have been leaving our state because of the stance we already have taken. We must support our border patrol and we must build walls and supply the security to make them effective barriers to illegal immigration."
She cited increasing numbers of violent incidents along the Mexican border, and the tide of methamphetamine and heroin. "I have fought the drug war for 35 years," she said, including her experience as an officer in anti-drug organizations.
She also is a proponent for local drug rehabilitation facilities.