Understanding the Arizona Constitution: Second Edition / Edition 2

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Arizona became the nation's 48th state in 1912, and since that time the Arizona Constitution has served as the template by which the state is governed. Toni McClory's Understanding the Arizona Constitution has offered insight into the inner workings and interpretations of the document-and the government that it established-for almost a decade.

Since the book's first publication, significant constitutional changes have occurred, some even altering the very structure of state government itself. There have been dramatic veto battles, protracted budget wars, and other interbranch conflicts that have generated landmark constitutional rulings from the state courts. The new edition of this handy reference addresses many of the latest issues, including legislative term limits, Arizona's new redistricting system, educational issues like the controversial school voucher program, and the influence of special-interest money in the legislature. A total of 63 propositions have reached the ballot, spawning heated controversies over same-sex marriage, immigration, and other hot-button social issues.

This book is the definitive guide to Arizona government and serves as a solid introductory text for classes on the Arizona Constitution. Extensive endnotes make it a useful reference for professionals within the government. Finally, it serves as a tool for any engaged citizen looking for information about online government resources, administrative rules, and voter rights. Comprehensive and clearly written, this book belongs on every Arizonan's bookshelf.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Praise for the first edition—
“This witty, informative volume may be the best book of the year for Arizonans.” —Arizona Daily Star

“Marketed as ‘an authoritative guide to Arizona government—written in plain language,’ this fascinating book lives up to its billing. Every Arizonan should read it, and keep it handy for future reference.” —Journal of Arizona History

“I am compelled to recommend this useful primer to all Arizonans. I don’t know another book that does a better job of explaining Arizona government.” —Tucson Weekly, Best Reading of the Year

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780816529445
  • Publisher: University of Arizona Press
  • Publication date: 11/15/2010
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 204
  • Sales rank: 101,513
  • Product dimensions: 9.18 (w) x 11.70 (h) x 0.54 (d)

Meet the Author

Toni McClory teaches political science at Glendale Community College, before which she practiced law in Arizona for more than eighteen years. She was an assistant attorney general from 1976 to 1991, served a clerkship with the U.S. Court of Appeals, and was a judge pro tem for the Arizona Court of Appeals.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations ix

Preface to the First Edition xi

Preface to the Second Edition xv

1 The Arizona Constitution 1

The Importance of State Constitutions 1

The Hierarchy of Laws 3

The Many Sources of Arizona Law 3

Resolving Conflicts between Laws 4

Amending the Arizona Constitution 7

Online Resources 10

2 Origins of the Arizona Constitution 11

Arizona's First Governments 11

The Pre-territorial Period 11

The Territorial Period: 1863 to 1912 17

The Push for Statehood 20

Federal Opposition 20

The Enabling Act of 1910 22

The Framers of the Arizona Constitution 25

The Constitution of 1910 28

The Taft Veto and Its Aftermath 31

Online Resources 34

3 The Legislative Branch 35

Structure of the Legislature 35

Legislative Elections 36

Arizona's Citizen Legislature 44

Organization of the Legislature 52

Responsibilities of the Legislature 55

The Lawmaking Process 55

Fiscal Powers 68

Government Oversight Powers 75

Other Legislative Powers 78

Online Resources 79

4 Direct Democracy 80

The Theory of Direct Democracy 80

How the Procedures Work 82

The Initiative 82

The Referendum 90

Recall 100

Online Resources 103

5 The Executive Branch 104

Executive-Branch Structure 104

A "Plural" Executive Branch 104

Elected Officials 109

The Governor's Powers 117

Administrative Powers 117

Lawmaking Powers 121

Judicial Powers 125

Informal Powers 128

Other Elected Officials 128

The Secretary of State 129

The Attorney General 130

The State Treasurer 131

The Superintendent of Public Instruction 131

The State Mine Inspector 132

Arizona Corporation Commissioners 132

Online Resources 134

6 The Judicial Branch 135

The Power of the Judicial Branch 135

How Judges Make Law and Public Policy 136

Judicial Review 138

The Court System 140

Arizona's Major Courts 140

The Relationship between State and Federal Courts 145

How Judges Are Chosen, Retained, and Removed 146

Judicial Selection and Retention before Merit Selection 147

Removing Judges 152

Judicial Procedures 153

A Typical Felony Case 153

A Typical Tort Case 159

Online Resources 163

7 Local Government 164

Why We Have Local Governments 165

Counties 165

What Counties Do 168

How Counties Are Governed 170

The Problem of County Governance 171

Cities and Towns 175

What Cities and Towns Do 176

How Cities and Towns Are Governed 177

District Governments 184

School Districts 185

Community College Districts 190

Special Taxing Districts 190

Online Resources 192

Appendix: Taft's Veto of Arizona Statehood 193

Glossary 201

Notes 211

Figure Credits 261

Index 263

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