House Democrats May Face Punishment For Disorderly Conduct, Per Ethics Committee

Rep. Analise Ortiz

The Arizona House Ethics Committee found two Democratic lawmakers guilty of disorderly conduct in reports released on Tuesday.

Representatives Oscar De Los Santos and Analise Ortiz may face disciplinary action for behaviors committed in April during a House recess following a procedural motion related to the measure to nullify the state’s Civil War-era abortion ban. De Los Santos violated Rules 1, 18, and 19, while Ortiz violated Rule 1.

Rule 1 pertains to disorderly conduct, Rule 18 pertains to decorum, and Rule 19 pertains to permissible and impermissible debate.

De Los Santos and Ortiz had shouted, “Shame!,” “Blood on your hands!,” and “Hold the vote!” and disrupted another member’s press conference by “charging” across the chamber to the press gaggle flocking the conference.

De Los Santos and Ortiz were among the majority of Democrats who participated in the chanting, though the pair of Democrats were also traversing the aisles while shouting, pointing at their Republican colleagues to direct their shaming and accusations of bloodshed.

De Los Santos admitted in written remarks to the ethics committee that he’d intended to be disruptive, formally out of order, and loud. However, he said that his behavior should be excused as a means to “protect the spirit of debate and the marketplace of ideas on the floor of the Arizona legislature” and not interpret “the rules of decorum and civility as barring passionate debate.”

The ethics committee declined De Los Santos’ interpretation, defending the House rules as the means for enabling spirited and free debate.

Ortiz, likewise, didn’t dispute the allegations against her and similarly defended them.

“After the press initiated a conversation with a member on the other side of the House Floor, Representative Ortiz made the intentional decision to ‘disrupt’ that conversation and crossed the House Floor to insert herself in their discussion by loudly making personal attacks against the member’s character and repeatedly interrupting both the member and the press,” read the committee findings.

Both members were unapologetic for their behavior, according to counsel.

In video captured from the House floor, De Los Santos and Ortiz shouted over Representative Matt Gress as he spoke with reporters. Whenever Gress attempted to speak, De Los Santos and Ortiz would overwhelm him with their shouting.

De Los Santos called Gress a “liar.”

“He does not care about the women who will die because of this horrific ban,” said Ortiz.

The complaints against De Los Santos and Ortiz were brought by Reps. Barbara Parker, David Marshall, Jacqueline Parker, and Rachel Jones.

Members of the ethics committee were Reps. Joseph Chaplik (chair), Travis Grantham (vice chair), Gail Griffin, Christopher Mathis, and Patricia Contreras.

Per the state constitution, the entire House will decide what, if any, disciplinary measures may be taken.

Neither De Los Santos or Ortiz issued remarks on social media pertaining to the ethics committee rulings against them. Their public remarks focused on opposing the passage of the bill cracking down on illegal immigration, HCR2060.

The House also took away Ortiz’s speaking privileges on Tuesday for fighting the motion to close the gallery to the public.

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  1. Yes Analise, lives are on the line. Unborn children will be scrificed on the altar of Democrat expediency. Just keep your knees together or rely on proven birth control methods rather than killing babies.

  2. What was their defense? “Oh, I’m a Democrat and I don’t know any better”?

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