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 need to have been registered to vote by August 1. Missed the deadline? You can still register online for November’s general election. Make your voice heard in 2016!
[C]ara Prior is seeking a House seat in Arizona’s Legislative District 16, where her husband of 20 years, Scott Prior, is also running for state Senate. Legislative District 16 includes Apache Junction, East Mesa, Gold Canyon and the northern portion of San Tan Valley. Ms. Prior is an independent-minded Democrat who is running a grassroots, person-first campaign centered on progressive values. She believes personal freedom should not be jeopardized by corporations, non-democratic government regulation or religion. She and her husband have lived in Apache Junction for 17 years.
“The government does not belong in my health care decisions or my bedroom.”
Ms. Prior generously shared time with Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona via Skype on July 8, 2016, to discuss her background and her campaign.
Tell us a little about your background.
I grew up in New England. Working in the semi-conductor and manufacturing industry, my husband Scott and I relocated to New Mexico as sub-contractors for Intel. We later moved to Arizona and bought a home. I currently work for Quantum Global Technology. The company cleans and refurbishes parts for manufacturing companies.
I have always followed politics but I became more actively involved in 2012 during the Occupy Movement. Scott and I were encouraged to become more involved. I began to think that maybe I could be that voice. There was nobody that I felt was representing me. Maybe if I stepped up to the plate, I could make my voice heard and be the voice for other people as well.
Are there issues specific to your district that need to be addressed?
My biggest concern is that not all in the district are being represented. As I have canvassed and talked to people, I could see that many people were feeling disenfranchised. It is important that their voices are heard.
What kind of beneficial legislation would you like to see introduced, and why do you think it’s important to fight for it?
I would like to see legislation that supports the fact that what goes on between me and my doctor is between me and my doctor. The government does not belong in my health care decisions or my bedroom. Money should instead be spent on education, jobs, and our infrastructure.
Some Arizona school districts, like Tucson Unified School District, are beginning 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 would like to see sex education required at the state level. I do not support abstinence-only sex education. Young people need to be educated on the options that are available to help them protect their health.
Why do you think it’s important that people make their own health care decisions?
If we can’t be responsible enough to make our own health care decisions, then how can we be expected to responsibly vote, work a job, or go to college? We should be guided by our own principles.
Why was it important for you to be endorsed by Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona?
Planned Parenthood has gotten a bad rap. In a lot of people’s mind, it is only about abortions. However, Planned Parenthood is about so much more. It is about family planning, breast and cervical exams, contraceptives, and education. Abortion is only a small part of what Planned Parenthood does. I have gone to Planned Parenthood myself. I am not afraid to be honest and real, I believe that is what Arizonans need.
Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?
There are a lot of people fighting for you through politics and the government, but we need your help. Help me to help you by getting involved with my campaign. Your support is needed.