As Arizona's cities are laying off and furloughing workers because of cratering revenues as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, their Republican senator is telling them to toughen up. She isn't going to help them by voting for any financial support for state local government, citing that "blue state bailout" bullshit.
"I'm just going to be frank with you guys, okay," she said in a virtual town meeting in Arizona. "This is not the time for states and cities—unlike Arizona, unlike Surprise—who have mismanaged their budgets over the course of many decades, for them to use this as an opportunity to see you, as a taxpayer in Arizona, as a cash cow for them in whatever city you want to talk about, whether it's Chicago or New York or whatever." Or Tempe, or Mesa, or Kingman, or Page, or Prescott, Arizona. Or Phoenix, which is a projecting a $26 million shortfall. Is she lumping all those towns in with the "cities that have nothing to do with coronavirus" but failed at budgeting and managing debt, and thus need to be bailed out? "This is not the time for us in Arizona and you in Surprise to be paying for mismanagement in Chicago," McSally continued. "That's what, actually, the left is advocating for right now. What we're advocating for is we provide specific relief."
McSally might have heard from some of those cities, because her office immediately issued a statement saying that those remarks that she made on a recorded public meeting "were not intended to be made public." Oh. Okay. Her office also said that "she was working hard to make sure towns and cities have the money and support they need during the pandemic." Uh-huh. Sure she is. If she can keep that funding from going to any of the states and communities hardest hit by the pandemic, so far.
In case you're wondering, Arizona was ranked in the top 10 most federally dependent states in 2019 by Wallethub. In fact, it was number 6 overall, rated at number 4 for the state government's dependency on the feds, and number 11 for state residents' dependency. "Arizona ranked sixth in terms of one of the most federally dependent states because right now its residents are receiving more money than they are paying to the government, which if you're a resident is more bang for your buck—it's not necessarily a bad thing," Wallethub analyst Jill Gonzalez explained.
For every $1 paid in federal taxes by residents as of last year, Arizona got back $1.72. Which would make them moochers, were Democratic officials as inclined to write off whole states as Republicans. There was a warning from Gonalez a year ago. "But essentially if anything were to happen with federal government, another recession, etc., Arizona would probably be in hot water." Just like New York or Illinois or California or Washington.
Posted with permission from Daily Kos.