/ Modified dec 13, 2012 8:06 p.m.

New Legislators Learn Lawmaking Ropes

Big freshman class begins experiencing inner workings of the Capitol

Thirty-seven new Arizona legislators will take their seats at the state Capitol next month, representing the second-largest freshman class of lawmakers in a decade.

Newly elected representatives were at the Capitol in Phoenix last week and senators were there this week for meet-and-greet and orientation sessions.

T.J. Shope, a Republican representative from Coolidge elected from District 8, said he was looking forward to working with members of both parties and felt that all were getting along at orientation sessions, without regard for political stands.

Shope and others are learning the rules, regulations and what can be the vagaries of the legislative process.

Lisa Otondo, a freshman Democratic representative from Yuma, in District 4, said she has followed the Legislature closely and knows that Democrats will have a tough time of it, being on the short end of a 36-24 Republican-to-Democratic count in the House.

Shope and Otondo are among six House freshmen who spoke to Arizona Public Media for reports this week on what they are learning and what the key issues of the new legislative session will be.

Shope said he will push economic development and offer a perspective from one of Arizona's smaller communities, the mostly rural and suburban District 8.

Otondo said she thinks the legislative session will be difficult for Democrats because Republicans still retain control of both houses, although they lost their supermajorities in last month's general election.

By posting comments, you agree to our
AZPM encourages comments, but comments that contain profanity, unrelated information, threats, libel, defamatory statements, obscenities, pornography or that violate the law are not allowed. Comments that promote commercial products or services are not allowed. Comments in violation of this policy will be removed. Continued posting of comments that violate this policy will result in the commenter being banned from the site.

By submitting your comments, you hereby give AZPM the right to post your comments and potentially use them in any other form of media operated by this institution.
AZPM is a service of the University of Arizona and our broadcast stations are licensed to the Arizona Board of Regents who hold the trademarks for Arizona Public Media and AZPM. We respectfully acknowledge the University of Arizona is on the land and territories of Indigenous peoples.
The University of Arizona