The Arizona primary election will be held on August 30, 2016. Reproductive health care access has been under attack, both nationally and statewide, but Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona has endorsed candidates who have shown strong commitment to reproductive justice. To acquaint you with our endorsed candidates, we are running a series called “Meet Our Candidates.” In order to vote in the primary election, you must register to vote by August 1 — and can even register online. Make your voice heard in 2016!
At 27, Matt Kopec became the Arizona Legislature’s youngest member when the Pima County Board of Supervisors appointed him to a vacated House seat in January 2016. Kopec, former Pima County Democratic Party treasurer and aide to Tucson Councilwoman Karin Uhlich, replaced Victoria Steele in Legislative District 9. If she wins her primary, Ms. Steele will face U.S. Rep. Martha McSally in November.
Kopec, a Tucson native, serves on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, and the Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Committee.
“Age-appropriate, medically accurate sex education … reduces unintended pregnancies and cases of sexually transmitted infections.”
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona recommend LD 9 voters cast their ballots for both Rep. Kopec and fellow incumbent Rep. Randall Friese. Rep. Kopec generously took the time to answer our questions on July 6, 2016.
What kind of beneficial legislation would you like to see introduced, and why do you think it’s important to fight for it?
With the recent Supreme Court case regarding abortion access in Texas, we need to bring Arizona in compliance with that ruling. Although I do understand that may ultimately require legal action [to] be brought. Every woman has the right to access abortion services, and we need to stand up to any law that erodes that.
Recently, Tucson Unified School District voted to include comprehensive sex education in their classrooms, but progress has been slow. How would you like to see sexuality education addressed on a statewide level?
I think that we need age-appropriate, medically accurate sex education. This type of education reduces unintended pregnancies and cases of sexually transmitted infections.
Why do you think it’s important that people make their own health care decisions?
Abortion decisions can be very trying. Women need to have accurate medical information from their doctors and be able to consult with people of their own choosing. Legislative interference with those two things only serves to harm women, not help them.
Why was it important for you to be endorsed by Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona?
Planned Parenthood has been a leader for women’s rights even when it has been dangerous to do so. The people of Planned Parenthood are brave. I am honored and humbled to be considered an ally.