Arizona’s governor Doug Ducey joined em this morning:
HH: I’m joined by Arizona’s great governor, Doug Ducey. Good morning, Governor, how are you?
DD: Really good, Hugh. How are you?
HH: I am terrific. I’ll be you’re relieved we have a resolution on the border and we can go back to both enforcement and economic growth as opposed to the separation of families.
DD: I really am. It’s the right thing to keep these families together, but we do want to have border security. We know it’s national security, and this is an issue we’ve been dealing with in Arizona for over a decade.
HH: Now a lot of people saw you when you were on with me on MSNBC a couple weeks ago talking about STOP orders, the Severe Threat Orders of Protection. And I believe you got a lot of converts. Have you got coverts in the legislature, Governor Ducey?
DD: We’re getting converts in the legislature. You know, Hugh, for a leading conservative like you to come out and talk about what a good idea this is, that this is a tool that as conservatives and people that believe in law and order, we should be proactive in protecting people. We should be proactive in public safety. And when we have somebody like a Nicholas Cruz who’s been visited by law enforcement and social services 39 times, identified to the FBI by name, and he posts personally on YouTube that he wants to be known as a school shooter, that we should not allow this individual to have the same rights that you and I enjoy. So yes, we’re getting converts. I think it’s just something where when you demonstrate leadership and actually be proactive rather than reactive to these tragedies that are happening inside our country, and that are preventable.
HH: Now I also want to stress, the National Rifle Association supports your bill. And I made that point on MSNBC, and I want people to understand Severe Threat Orders of Protection, other GVRO versions, are not routinely endorsed or opposed by the NRA. They look at the small print. They look at the law. They like yours.
DD: They do like ours. They don’t see it as a slippery slope at all. They think there’s due process, because there is due process there. It’s temporary. It’s something that requires clear and convincing evidence. And it’s a tool for law enforcement. It’s a tool for people that are specialists in mental health when they can identify somebody like people, you know, they knew about Dylan Roof or Nicholas Cruz. The entire community at school was scared of this individual, and they were basically telling people and telegraphing what they were going to do. And it’s very rare. This is a very rare situation. It doesn’t mean we don’t have a lot of youth that emotionally and socially disconnected because of things that are going on in social media and their own life, and you know, with all kinds of issues like depression. But that’s not what we’re talking about with this STOP order. We’re talking about people that are going to shoot up a school, and giving off every indication that they’re going to do that.
HH: When we come back from break, Governor Ducey’s going to stick around with me. We’re going to talk about the economy in Arizona, because it represents what’s going on in the economy in the United States. It’s taking off. It’s booming. What is going on in Arizona that ought to be going on all across the United States? We’ll tell you about it when we come back from break.
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HH: Governor, I always have to interrupt when the President tweeted, and the President has tweeted. Henry McMaster has done a great job as governor or South Carolina, writes the President two minutes ago. The state is booming with jobs and new industries, setting records. He’s tough on crime and strong on borders, health care, the military and our great vets. Henry has my full and complete endorsement. #MAGA. You know Henry McMaster, Governor Ducey. That’s a great way for a governor to wake up, isn’t it?
DD: Oh, it sure is. It sure it. And Governor McMaster is doing a great job out in South Carolina. I was actually able to sit with him at a dinner with President Trump at the White House a few weeks ago, and we were talking about the different things that we were doing in our states not only around the economy, but of course in Arizona, we talked about border security. And Governor McMaster has got his national guard in Arizona helping support our border agents.
HH: Well, the President also tweeted last night Minnesota was incredible, what a crowd. That was incredible, and a lot of this comes back to the economy, Doug Ducey. And I don’t want to get sidetracked. Arizona’s economy, I don’t know what your unemployment is. It’s below 4%, right?
DD: Our state is booming right now. The last time unemployment was this low in the state of Arizona, Hugh, people were renting their movies from Blockbuster. The iPhone hadn’t even been introduced. We’ve had 160,000 new private sector jobs. We’ve had 300 companies relocate to the state of Arizona. It’s been so good I had to say in my state of the state that I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank my partner in growing Arizona’s economy, and that’s been California Governor Jerry Brown. When Governor Brown comes to visit the state of Arizona, our citizens chant four more years. I mean, he’s doing everything wrong. He’s raising taxes, increasing regulation, and he’s pushing people and producers outside of that state. Many of them are coming to Arizona just like Americans from all across the country. We’ve got 132 people are moving to the state of Arizona on a daily basis.
HH: You know, one of my best friends and a guest host has moved over to Prescott, not to Prescott, but to north of Phoenix. I’ll think of it in just a second and near the Biltmore. And as a result, I’m thinking to myself all of the talent in California is draining away. But you will, he’s a Republican, his wife’s a Republican, but are you going to get Democrats as well coming over there and then change the political composition of Arizona that makes it a successful state, Governor Ducey?
DD: Well, we want, people love Arizona. So they come here for our quality of life, for our economic attractiveness, for just the quality of our people. It’s a real wide open, welcoming and inviting state where someone like me can build a business and become a governor, somebody who’s not from a political family or background at all. But we do want people that are coming over from California to remember that they left California for a reason. So we don’t want to see things like tax increases here or increasing regulations. So we do a lot to help people understand what makes for the quality of life here, and the ability to climb the economic ladder. And we work very hard to keep bad policy from moving forward. We have a lot of things coming to the ballot this year, things like tax increases that would literally double our income tax in the state of Arizona. So we’ll be out communicating that that would be the surest way to kill our economy and not grow out general fund.
HH: Let me ask you about the education. There is a narrative that Republicans are anti-education. No, we are not. There is a narrative that Republicans are anti-teacher. No, we are not. What is your initiative here, because I keep seeing you tweeting about it?
DD: Well, one, we are pro-education. I want to see outcomes and results inside the classroom. And the people that make that happen are our teachers. We did something in the state of Arizona. We had a raise to our teachers. They had earned this raise. They deserved this raise. The great recession was tough on Arizona, but I talked about how our economy was booming, the companies that are coming to the state of Arizona. That’s allowed us to grow our general fund. That’s allowed us to make a commitment to our teachers that we’re going to be able to increase their pay. And on average, it’ll be 20% by the year 2020. But I don’t want the measure of success in K-12 education to be spending. I want it to be outcomes and results inside the classroom. School choice has been a real positive to the state of Arizona. We’ve got 500 public charter schools in the state. Nearly 200,000 kids are going to those schools along with our district public schools. We’ve seen, Arizona’s got the fastest growing improvement in the country in math and reading. So we’re doing a lot of things right. We passed the American Civics Act, the first state in the country to pass that. So when an Arizona kid graduates high school, they’re able to pass the same test that a new American can pass. For some reason, that wasn’t happening anywhere I the country. Arizona was the first state to pass it. Now it’s happened in 26 states. Everyone should talk to their governor and to their state legislatures in their state to get the American Civics Act passed so we can get back to our kids’ understanding what makes our country so special, different, and unique. But we want to stay focused on the spending being an investment in outcomes and results, and not just a battle of national averages and those types of things that only hike up spending and don’t result in better consequences for our kids.
HH: Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, great to have you. And when you come back, we’ll talk about your judicial appointments, which was good, and Donald Trump’s freedom loving judges from top to bottom in the Arizona judiciary as well. Thank you, Governor Ducey.
End of interview.