Author

Jim Small

Jim Small

Jim Small is a native Arizonan and has covered state government, policy and politics since 2004, with a focus on investigative and in-depth policy reporting, first as a reporter for the Arizona Capitol Times, then as editor of the paper and its prestigious sister publications, the Yellow Sheet Report and Arizona Legislative Report. Under his guidance, the Capitol Times won numerous state, regional and national awards for its accountability journalism and probing investigations into state government operations.

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: The Senate is using COVID to bar reporters

By: - February 3, 2021

Under the guise of COVID restrictions, the Arizona Senate has reneged on its promise that it would keep the building open to the media, so the press could have access to staff and senator as it did its job of reporting on the chamber’s work and kept the public informed. But this week, the Senate deactivated all […]

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: What’s up with the Senate audit?

By: - February 2, 2021

Something strange is afoot with the state Senate’s planned audit of the Maricopa County election. I know, I know — it’s shocking that a politically motivated, quixotic quest to uncover imagined rampant fraud that didn’t benefit any Democrats outside of Joe Biden and Mark Kelly wouldn’t be on the up-and-up. But hear me out. For […]

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: The most un-democratic bill I’ve ever seen

By: - February 1, 2021

Republicans in the legislature are kicking off 2021 with a host of proposals that seek to change how our elections are conducted. While some proposals, like Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita’s measure to take the “permanent” out of the Permanent Early Voter List, are retreads from prior years, a good many of this year’s bills are a […]

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: Get ready for a break-neck redistricting schedule

By: - January 28, 2021

Yesterday’s news that state-level Census data won’t be available until the end of July — and possibly later — complicates things for the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. A decade ago, that data was available in the spring, so when the commission hired a mapping consulting firm in June, that company was able to hit the […]

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: This is who Kyrsten Sinema is

By: - January 27, 2021

This week is a stark reminder that U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema is loyal first and foremost to her political career, and not to her party, as she has reportedly pledged to Republican leader Mitch McConnell that she won’t join with her Democratic colleagues to eliminate the Senate’s filibuster rule. That rule effectively means that any proposal […]

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: This is hardly the time for this discussion

By: - January 26, 2021

Winter in Arizona should have shattered any sense of complacency we had about COVID: Cases, hospitalizations and deaths quickly accelerated in November, far surpassed the earlier summer peak in December and continued unabated into January. But none of that seems to make a damn bit of difference for many of our Republican leaders, who seem […]

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: No, we can’t ‘vaccinate our way out’ of this

By: - January 25, 2021

For weeks, the state’s stop public health official, Dr. Cara Christ, had been saying that Arizona couldn’t simply wait for 5 million people (or so) to get vaccinated, and we needed to remain vigilant and practice simple safety measures like staying home, wearing masks and physically distancing. Then Gov. Ducey blew that out of the water on Jan. […]

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: Republicans will keep moving the election audit goalposts

By: - January 22, 2021

Wednesday was a messaging tug-of-war between the state Senate and the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors over those legislative subpoenas aimed to auditing the county’s November election, but a couple things seem clear to me. Talks are ongoing between the Senate and the county’s attorneys, and I suspect a deal is likely imminent that would see […]

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: Biden is president

By: - January 21, 2021

In the weeks leading up to yesterday’s inauguration of Joseph R. Biden as the 46th president of the United States, my inbox would routinely be filled with messages from self-styled “patriots” who demanded I retract my lies that Biden won and would become president. There was no chance, they insisted, that could happen — and […]

A GOP senator marshalled her supporters to back a gun store owner to lead the redistricting panel

By: - January 20, 2021

A bombastic pro-Trump state senator from Flagstaff is supporting Robert Wilson to be the fifth and final member of the Arizona Independent Redistricting Committee, and residents of her legislative district have flooded the panel with comments urging his selection as chairman.

Senate announces election audit agreement, but Maricopa County says there isn’t one

By: - January 20, 2021

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors on Wednesday agreed to drop its legal fight challenging sweeping subpoenas for voting machines, ballots and other election materials that the Arizona Senate issued and will instead turn over the requested items so lawmakers can conduct an audit of Joe Biden’s win in the November election.

COMMENTARY

Editor’s Thought Bubble: The path forward begins today

By: - January 20, 2021

Today is Inauguration Day, and it will be one like none other in American history. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be sworn in two weeks to the day after a violent mob supporting Donald Trump swarmed the Capitol, in a failed coup attempt that sought to stop Congress from doing its constitutional duty to […]