Andy Biggs defeats Joan Greene
U.S. Rep. Andy Biggs, a Republican who has established himself as one of the more conservative voices in Washington in his first term, easily defeated Democrat Joan Greene on Tuesday, according to the Associated Press.
Unofficial results showed Greene and her party made scant progress in Arizona’s 5th Congressional District, where Biggs coasted to a second term by as comfortable a margin as he did in 2016.
Biggs was the only member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus to vote against the GOP-led health-care overhaul that passed that chamber only to fail in the Senate with Arizona Sen. John McCain’s dramatic thumbs down.
Biggs did so because he viewed the GOP plans as doing too little to bring down costs to consumers and to repeal the Affordable Care Act, former President Barack Obama’s signature legislative achievement.
Biggs has supported funding President Donald Trump’s border wall and was among the Trump loyalists who supported impeaching Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who oversees the special counsel’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and possible obstruction of justice afterward.
He has been an active voice on conservative causes finding support with Trump.
Biggs pushed “right to try” legislation crafted in large part by the Goldwater Institute that allows use of some experimental prescription drugs for those with terminal illness. Trump signed a version similar to Biggs’ into law earlier this year.
Biggs also pushed for “Grant’s Law,” an effort to provide greater punishment to people who re-enter the U.S. after being deported. A bill similar to Biggs’ failed in the Senate, despite Trump’s support.
The legislation grew out of the 2015 shooting death of Mesa resident Grant Ronnebeck. Police say he was killed by an immigrant in the U.S. illegally who was already convicted of felony burglary.
Ronnebeck’s death attracted national attention, including from Trump, who cited it during his campaign as a symptom of a broken immigration system.
By contrast, Greene, a businesswoman and advocate for rescue animals, emphasized changes in the health-care system. Greene wants a single-payer system, declaring health care to be a right.
Greene also pitched debt-free college and more robust K-12 education in areas like science, technology, engineering and math. She didn’t mention immigration issues on her campaign website.
The district covers the East Valley from south of Loop 202 down through Mesa to Sun Lakes and Queen Creek.
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