Arizona Civil Rights Initiative
The 2008 Super Tuesday for Equality Campaign Announces the
Arizona Civil Rights Initiative
[Thursday April 26, 2007] -- In a press conference in Phoenix
today advocates of race-blind and color-blind policies announced that Arizona is a target
for a ballot initiative to ban race and gender preferences in that state in the November
2008 general elections.
The press conference was held at 9:00 am today at the Capitol Rose Garden in Phoenix.
operative clause of the proposed Arizona ballot initiative reads as follows:
"The state shall not discriminate against or
grant preferential treatment to any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color,
ethnicity or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education or
Arizona Civil Rights Initiative CONTACT
Thomas, Maricopa County Attorney
Bolick, co-founder and former litigator for the Institute for Justice, and currently
Director of the Goldwater Institute for Constitutional Litigation
||http://arizonacri.org (under construction)
Gratz, Director of State and Local Initiatives
American Civil Rights Institute
P.O. Box 188350
Sacramento, CA 95815
Cell: (517) 281-6738
|Super Tuesday for Equal Rights Web Site:
information on all of the Super Tuesday 2008 ballot initiatives,
also be sure to visit the Super Tuesday for Equal Rights Web Site!
ARIZONA CIVIL RIGHTS
INITIATIVE COMING TO 2008 BALLOT
Plans for Anti-Preferences
Arizona] -- The Arizona Civil Rights Initiative is forging ahead with plans for a
November, 2008 ballot measure banning government-sponsored race and gender preferences in
the state. The Arizona Civil Rights Initiative will be part of a 'Super Tuesday for
Equal Rights' campaign that will offer citizens of several states the chance to end
such practices in public employment, public education, and public contracting. Similar
measures have already passed in three other states, all by overwhelming margins.
Clint Bolick, co-founder and former litigator for the Institute of Justice and currently
Director of the Goldwater Institute for Constitutional Litigation, said it's time for
Arizona to stop increasing the number of people who are given preferences because of their
race. "The courts have repeatedly struck down laws promoting racial preferences
for violating the Constitution," said Bolick, who has successfully litigated on
behalf of many minority clients hampered by unconstitutional government regulations.
continued: "We need to move beyond the ideological partisanship that has
extended racial preferences into the 21st century. Racial preferences don't work, and harm
the very people claimed to benefit from them." Bolick has agreed to be the Arizona
Andrew Thomas, Maricopa County Attorney, will serve as the honorary chair of the effort.
Thomas said, "I am pleased to join in this effort to bring about a colorblind society
and equality under law. This vision of civil rights is grounded in our Constitution and
informed by our experience as a nation."
Also attending the press conference will be Ward Connerly, chairman of the
Sacramento-based American Civil Rights Institute and longtime crusader for a colorblind
America, who has been invited by the Arizona Civil Rights Initiative to help with the
campaign. "Getting our nation to the point of applying a single standard to all
Americans is one of the most crucial issues of our time," says Connerly, who helped
lead the earlier successful anti-preferences campaigns in California, Washington state
and, most recently, Michigan.
"If events of the past couple of weeks have taught us anything at all, it is that
race will continue to divide our nation as long as we insist on treating people
differently based on ethnicity and gender. Both Don Imus, in his appalling comments on the
Rutgers women's basketball team, and those who rushed to judgment in the Duke lacrosse
case made the same mistake: they looked at individuals and saw only skin color."
Connerly continued, "We have to get past that kind of thinking and we must start by
getting our government out of the business of privileging some citizens over others. Real
lives are radically affected, and great social and economic is done when decisions are
made about individuals based on the color of their skin or the origin of their
The operative clause of the proposed ballot initiative reads as follows: "The state
shall not discriminate against or grant preferential treatment to any individual or group
on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin in the operation of public
employment, public education or public contracting." -30-
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