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Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund Endorses 13 Candidates for Arizona State House and Senate

August 13, 2020

Candidates Endorsed Today are Proven Gun Sense Champions Who Will Fight for Common-Sense Gun Safety Measures in Arizona

NEW YORK – Today, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund endorsed a slate of gun sense champions who will fight for gun safety in the Arizona state legislature. Each of these candidates received the Moms Demand Action Gun Sense Candidate Distinction, a prerequisite for being considered for endorsement. 

“Republicans in the Arizona statehouse have done absolutely nothing to disarm domestic abusers, which is both bad policy and bad politics in a state where 89% of voters want stronger gun laws,” said John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety. “In the runup to November, Everytown is going all-out to help voters flip the legislature and send a gun sense majority to Phoenix.”

“Arizona lawmakers who’ve blocked gun safety legislation will be voted out of office come November,” said Kara Waite volunteer leader with the Arizona chapter of Moms Demand Action. “The gun sense champions endorsed today have made a commitment to stand with the overwhelming majority of Arizonans who want stronger gun laws. We know they will vote to keep our families and our communities safe, and we are excited to support them all the way to the ballot box.” 

The Arizona state house and senate endorsements come after a legislative session in which both chambers refused to take up legislation to disarm domestic abusers, for the second year in a row. Instead, lawmakers in the legislature once again prioritized and tried to push through risky legislation that would jeopardize the safety of Arizonans, such as a policy to arm teachers and other school employees and a bill that would have created new liability for public entities that choose to prohibit firearms — both of which were ultimately defeated. 

State House endorsements include:

  • State Representative. Charlene Fernandez, LD-04
  • State Representative. Randall Friese, LD-09
  • State Representative. Jennifer Pawlik, LD-17
  • Coral Evans, LD-06
  • Sharon Girard, LD-08
  • Felipe Perez, LD-11
  • Judy Schwiebert, LD-20
  • Kathy Knecht, LD-21
  • Eric Kurland, LD-23

 State Senate endorsements include: 

  • State Senator. Victoria Steele, LD-09
  • Felicia French, LD-06
  • JoAnna Mendoza, LD-11
  • AJ Kurdoglu, LD-17
  • Douglas Ervin, LD-20

Everytown for Gun Safety Action previously endorsed Moms Demand Action volunteers Brian Whitman for Senate in LD-21 and Kathleen Honne for State House in LD-22 and endorsed gun violence survivors and incumbent State Representatives Daniel Hernandez for State House in LD-02 and Jennifer Longdon for State House in LD-24.  

In May, Everytown announced “Gun Sense Majority: Arizona” — a significant financial and grassroots effort dedicated to electing gun sense candidates up and down the ballot. In April, Students Demand Action also launched Arizona’s new Students Demand Action Virtual Field Office, an office focused on registering young voters virtually across the state.   

In February, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund conducted polling in Arizona, which found that Arizonans overwhelmingly support stronger gun violence prevention laws and rate gun safety as a top priority for the 2020 elections. In fact, opposing background checks on all gun sales is one of the most toxic positions a candidate for office can take in the eyes of Arizona voters. National polling released in June found that the intensity of Americans’ support for common-sense gun safety measures had surged during the coronavirus pandemic, with a significant majority of Americans viewing background checks on all gun sales and disarming domestic abusers “more important” now than before the pandemic began.  

Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund and Victory Fund plan to spend $60 million on the 2020 elections — double what they spent during the 2018 elections, and more than any gun safety opponent, including the NRA, reported spending on the 2016 elections.

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