Opinion by Charles "Hos" Hoskins, Maricopa County Treasurer
I agree with John MacDonald's quote in Kathleen Ingley's column that "lobbyists have way too much influence at the state Capitol" ("Ending the freebies," Viewpoints, Sunday).
Special-interest influence is the worst I have seen in my 35-plus years of being associated with state government. It started on this path with the passage of legislative term limits and won't change until those limits are repealed. By the time a legislator figures out that most things lobbyists ask for will put taxpayer money in their pockets, they are termed out.
Another article on Monday by Republic reporter Alia Beard Rau gives insight as to how lobbyists maintain their influence: They give legislators money, meals and gifts.
To paraphrase, what we have is governing of the people by the lobbyist and for the special interest. This will not change until we can keep some legislators around long enough to develop their institutional memory and pay them enough so they can get off the lobbyist dole.
-- Charles "Hos" Hoskins, Peoria
The original article can be viewed here.