Arizona Senate, District 13

Arizona's 30 state senators each represent a unique district of voters. Republicans have held the majority in recent years, although most recently by only a handful of votes.The job pays $24,000 a year, plus mileage and per-diem during session.

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  • Candidate picture

    Michelle Harris
    (Dem)

  • Sine Kerr
    (Rep)

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Biographical Information

Why are you the best person for the job?

Do you support the teacher pay-raise plan passed by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Doug Ducey? Why or why not?

State funding for Arizona schools remains below pre-recession levels. How should the state address funding for its schools in next year’s budget? How would you pay for any increases?

Does Arizona do enough to require accountability and transparency for charter schools?

Would you support stricter gun laws, including raising the minimum age to 21 for all gun purchases, banning bump stocks and universal background checks on gun sales between private parties?

What should Arizona do to prevent mass shootings in schools?

As a legislator, would you be inclined to support additional tax cuts for individuals or businesses? If so, which taxes would you like to see reduced?

Should recreational marijuana use be legalized in Arizona? Why or why not?

Has Arizona taken the right approach by increasing restrictions on abortion providers and clinics? Why or why not?

What should Arizona be doing to prepare for a potential water-shortage declaration on the Colorado River?

Would you support a statewide law that bans discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in public accommodations, such as restaurants and other businesses? Why or why not?

Would you support a statewide law to allow business owners and others to deny services to customers based on religious beliefs? Why or why not?

In terms of the economy, how can the Legislature best encourage sustainable growth that benefits people of all income levels?

Do you support further expanding the Empowerment Scholarship Account program, which provides state funding for private-school education?

What is your position on Proposition 305, the ballot measure that would repeal the Legislature’s 2017 expansion of the voucher program?

What role should Arizona play in helping the federal government secure the border with Mexico?

Has the Legislature done enough to address concerns about sexual harassment among its membership?

Is there an issue not mentioned about that you feel hasn’t received enough attention at the Capitol? How would you address it?

What is the greatest threat to Arizona’s future, and how would you address it?

Last spring, lawmakers – at the direction of the governor’s office – opted to not authorize the state’s expenditure of $56 million in federal aid for child-care costs for the working poor. Should the state accept the $56 million? Why or why not?

Family members who take in their relative’s children when the kids are removed from their parents’ home get a sliver of the money paid to foster parents, about $45 a month, compared to $650. What responsibility, if any, does the state have to these family members? Should they be paid the same as foster parents?

Age 48
Family Michael Harris, Husband Together we have 4 children and 5 grandchildren. My parents live in Sun City and 4 generations of my family live in the West Valley.
Facebook http://mh4az
Twitter @mh4azsenate
Campaign Phone (480) 749-3256
I’ve devoted my life to service. I served my country, I served my community, and now I hope to serve the people of my district. Throughout my military career, I’ve faced some of the biggest and most complex problems in different areas of the world, working alongside people from all walks of life. I learned that, to solve problems, you have to work together be able to develop an informed point of view on a wide array of issues, often very quickly. But, most of all, you have to care more about the people you are serving than any benefit you might derive from your position. That’s the leadership Arizona deserves. That’s why I’m the right person for this job.
I’m glad the RedForEd movement was able to drive the Legislature to deliver something. But let’s not kid ourselves: this legislation is full of holes. The raise only applies to a specific set of teachers, it comes at a cost to State Troopers and Corrections Officers, who had their long-overdue pay raises “swept” away, and there’s no guarantee that the budget projections will hold up over the next few years to support it. It’s a start, but it’s a half-measure at best.
We have to increase revenue coming into the state budget. The revenue has to come from multiple avenues in order to lessen any future recession impact. My suggestion is to close some corporate tax loopholes and cap private & parochial school contribution tax credits. I would also like to have discussions about implementing an energy excise tax. There is no silver bullet and we have to consider all options.

No. And this should be simple. Any institution that receives public funds to perform a public service should be subject to the same standards of ethics, transparency, and performance as if the state were performing the function itself. The government are stewards of taxpayer dollars; they are accountable for ensuring the money is being spent responsibly.
The 2nd Amendment is the law of the land. I’ve sworn an oath to uphold the Constitution five times in my military career. Still, we have the highest levels of gun violence in the modern world. We can respect the Constitution and still look for fact-based, data-driven solutions to make our population safer and prevent violence. Universal background checks are the single best method for reducing the flow of weapons to criminals and prohibited possessors. I also support legislation that would outlaw any modifications to weapons that effectively emulated full-automatic fire, including bump stocks. As for age restrictions, I haven’t seen any data that suggests this would make any meaningful difference, and having served with many well-armed 18 year olds in the military, it seems arbitrary.
Prevention is the operative word here. I’ve spoken to police officers about this at length. We are at a huge deficit of school counselors, currently one per 900 students in Arizona. And we are just as limited in mental health care coverage and facilities across our communities. Preventing violence starts with dramatically increasing investment in these programs. Second, students are most likely to get a weapon from home. I’d like to see a program that strongly promoted safe storage, up to and including giving trigger locks, free of charge, to anybody that asks for one (or ten). A secured weapon can’t be used to inflict violence. I do not support arming teachers; that just adds even more variables for a tactically horrible situation when police respond.
In order for a state to function, it has to have the revenue available to do the business of the voters it supports. We don’t have enough. We already have to sweep funds year after year to cover shortfalls. We can’t cut any more.
I am not opposed to legalizing marijuana however I need to see specifics on how it would be implemented in our state. This specific issue has not been brought up yet in my district when I've been out knocking on doors and meeting with people. I'd also like to get more input from the people in my area about their concerns on this subject.
No. The Supreme Court has ruled repeatedly that a woman’s right to seek and receive reproductive health care is protected. The endless stream of rhetoric and attacks that politicians level on providers that also provide abortion services is in contradiction to those rulings. No other medical decision is the subject of such public shaming and outright manipulation.
We need to prepare for an imminent water shortage. Immediate planning must include a drought contingency plan and legislative priorities to enable implementation of the drought contingency plan. The state has to push residential conservation efforts. The population of Maricopa County is expanding. We have to educate both residents and developers about the many ways to conserve water consumption from low water usage fixtures in your home to home and common area landscaping. We also need to look at changing building codes and utilizing smart water meters to notify people when they have a possible leak.
Yes. Every person in Arizona deserves equal dignity, opportunity, and justice as they are welcomed and able to participate fully in every aspect of civil society.
Citizenship in the US should afford every person the right to vote in the selection of our leaders and the right to participate fully in society. Nobody should be able to deny anybody else the right to participate in and enjoy the same benefits of society that are afforded everyone else. The free practice of religion shall not be infringed, right up until the point it interferes with another’s ability to exist and participate in society.
An economy that grows consistently and is recession-proof isn’t all that different from a 401k. It needs three things: —It must be diverse enough to withstand the fluctuations that naturally occur, as well as 2007-like crashes. Right now, over 90% of AZ GDP is pinned to the service sector and real estate. That’s dangerously lop-sided. —It needs continuous steady investment. Relentless tax cuts, automatically escalating tax gifts, and playing favorites with certain corporate players have stripped the state budget to the bone. We have no flexibility to invest in new growth, should the opportunity present itself. —It needs smart and informed participants. Our gross neglect of public education makes us an unlikely choice for a fortune 500 company to invest and find a sustainable work force. What’s more, we need to show that Arizona has a policy toward people that’s at least as accepting as your average HR department, and we’ve fallen well short of that mark.
No.
I collected petition signatures to get Prop 305 on the ballot and I will be voting NO on Prop 305 to repeal the legislation passed in 2017.

As a veteran, I have a clear appreciation of the different roles between federal and state assets. Immigration enforcement is a federal issue and should remain in the hands of those organizations that are charged, trained, and resourced for that work. Local and state law enforcement agencies have a different job: to maintain safe communities through the prevention and resolution of crime. Mixing the two comes with a whole host of issues, not the least of which is funding. What percentage of a local city cop’s time is spent on federal immigration issues and who pays for that? What is the reimbursement mechanism from the federal government? It doesn’t exist.
Absolutely not. This needs to be a two-pronged and sustained effort. First, oversight committees need to be empowered to investigate and hold accountable those who are accused of misconduct, with clear penalties outlined for unacceptable conduct and clear protections for any and all people who have business at the Capitol (not just legislators). The second prong is cultural and will take longer. The more women are represented and placed in positions of leadership, the more progress we will be able to make. But the tone needs to be set from the top and repeated consistently to send the message of a zero tolerance policy.
I have heard from many residents in Yuma about the lack of funding for roads from the state that was supposed to come from HURF (Highway User Revenue Funds). The poor roads are affecting the local economy. HURF revenue has been “swept” for many years because of a lack of state revenue due to tax cuts. We have to increase state revenue and guarantee HURF revenue goes to rural areas.
In a word: water. We are growing rapidly without any regard to our most limited resource. If we continue in this direction, it could destroy Arizona’s economy and the well-being of 7 million Arizonans with it. We need to face some tough decisions in the immediate future, and we will need courageous leadership to do it. We must develop and implement a comprehensive water management plan that addresses new development and existing, maximizes use of effluent, gray water, and low-water technology across public and private life. That plan must preserve water flows to agriculture, while continuously working with farmers to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of irrigation practices. And finally, we must modernize utility ratemaking policy in a way that truly incentivizes conservation and doesn’t rely solely on consumption for utility company revenue. Even after all of that, individual Arizonans will have to join a culture of conservation, and that will require leadership too.
I am at a loss as to why we would not use this federal money to help offset child-care costs. Yes, the state should accept this money and DES should come up with a plan to utilize the funds. These are federal funds specifically allocated to state to be used for this purpose. These funds could be used to help keep families working and lifting them up out of poverty.
The state should be reimbursing these families the same amount of money they would pay to have them in foster care. All the research shows children adjust better when living with family members. We should be encouraging kinship foster care every way we can. These children have already gone through a traumatic event and we should be doing everything possible to mitigate the impact of being removed from their home.
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