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Arizona Lawmakers Avoid Equal Rights For Women Once More

For the second year in a row, Democrats failed to convince Republican counterparts that Arizona women should have equal rights guaranteed.

Congress introduced the equality for men and women amendment back in 1972, but fell three states short of the necessary 38 states needed to pass it.

That left the responsibility for ratifying to each of the state's local legislators. Arizona remains among the last 14 states to do so.

Republican Rep. Eddie Farnsworth argued on Tuesday's House floor that passing such an amendment would be redundant.

"If you have people that are paying less money based on gender, they are already breaking the law," he told fellow lawmakers. "That's an enforcement issue, passing another law is not going to change enforcement."

The debate fell down party lines, with Tucson Democrat Pamela Powers Hannley invoking conservative former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's own words.

"The constitution does not require discrimination on the basis of sex," Hannley reminded the room, "the only issue is whether or not it prohibits it," and added, "It does not!"

Hannley introduced the idea to ratify the bill on national Equal Pay day, when a nationwide report found Arizona women still make 82 cents on the dollar compared to men.

Rather than ratify the amendment, Republicans voted to adjourn early for the day.

Holliday Moore is a native Arizonan and veteran journalist who joined KJZZ’s news team in January 2017.Moore graduated from Arizona State University after double majoring in mass communications and marketing/management. She spent her first two decades reporting for television news, beginning in small markets and working up to congressional correspondent in Washington, D.C., for a political news service.Family commitments in Arizona brought her back to the Southwest, where she covered legislative and court beats for Albuquerque’s KRQE-TV and the infamous Four Corner Manhunt as KREZ-TV’s managing editor.Back home in Phoenix, she developed ABC15’s “Democracy Project,” now instituted at all Scripps’ news stations nationwide. Her work garnered “Best Practices” recognition by the Poynter Institute and the prestigious Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism.Her television reports, from sports to cultural issues, earned her multiple Emmy and Associated Press nominations, including a Rocky Mountain Emmy for her Hopi Partition Land Act coverage.As she started a family, Moore started her own media production agency, producing magazine-style travel stories for the Emmy-winning Arizona Highways Television show while working part time for a Valley radio station. She is convinced radio is where visual, sound, and print are merging through deeper storytelling. In her relatively short time with radio network affiliates, she has won four Edward R. Murrow Awards and multiple nominations from other professional news societies.Moore now teaches advanced broadcast writing to the next generation of reporters at ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, where a high percentage have gone on to receive national awards for their work in her class. She enjoys being back home near childhood friends and sharing the beautiful Arizona desert with her husband and young son.