PHOENIX, AZ (3TV/CBS 5)– Arizona Republican lawmakers were heard Thursday evening threatening retaliation against two of their colleagues, who are pushing legislation to protect victims of childhood sexual assault.
The threats were caught on an open microphone during, what was supposed to be, a closed-door meeting of Arizona House Republicans.
Rep. Ben Toma, a Republican from Peoria, demanded repercussions for Sen. Paul Boyer and Sen. Heather Carter, who are refusing to support the budget.
Boyer and Carter have frustrated their fellow Republicans this year. They are demanding, before they vote for any budget, that lawmakers pass of a bill that extends the statute of limitations for victims of childhood sexual assault to sue in civil court.
“You’ve got another session coming, and there will be Carter and Boyer bills in that upcoming session. There will also be asks of them in that upcoming session, as well. I guarantee you, I am in no mood to hear a Carter bill,” Toma said. “Once you give in and there are no repercussions, you’ve encouraged all kinds of … there has to be repercussions of some kind.”
Toward the end of the recording, Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers talks after he realizes that the audio was captured on an open mic.
“OK gang, somebody’s got an open mic on in the room. There’s a mic on,” Bowers said.
During that meeting, another lawmaker talked about filing an ethics complaint.
Another lawmaker at the meeting told Arizona’s Family that they believe Boyer and Carter violated legislative ethics rules.
Arizona’s Family has asked Bowers for a comment but has not heard back.