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.

[WATCH: State lawmaker defends retaliation comments made on 'hot mic']

The threats were caught on an open microphone during, what was supposed to be, a closed-door meeting of Arizona House Republicans.

[WATCH: Arizona Republican lawmakers heard making threats on 'hot mic']

Rep. Ben Toma, a Republican from Peoria, demanded repercussions for Sen. Paul Boyer and Sen. Heather Carter, who are refusing to support the budget.

[LISTEN: Full recording reveals hot mic picked up retaliation threats from Arizona lawmakers]

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.

[RELATED: Arizona Legislature begins work on budget bills]

"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."

[RELATED: More victims of child sex abuse show support for bill blocked by Capitol leaders]

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.

[RELATED: Arizona Senate delays budget debate; House moves slowly]

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.

[RELATED: Advocates ramp up pressure to pass childhood sex abuse bill]

[AND THIS: Senator reveals she was raped as pressure to pass sex assault bill rises]

Arizona’s Family has asked Bowers for a comment but has not heard back.

[RELATED: Child sex assault lawsuit proposal complicates budget battle]

[RELATED: Arizona Senate delays budget debate; House moves slowly]


Copyright 2019 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.




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(19) comments


You mean to tell me one political party threatened retaliation against another political party because they don't support their proposal?!?!? Say it ain't so!! I've NEVER heard of that happening before...................................... I guess it's news though when a liberal media station catches the Republicans doing it. Think they'd be running a story if they caught the Democrats doing it??


That is so true. That is why the liberal stations are not broadcasting the outlandish ravings and lies of Herr Pelosi.


Politicians are complete filth. 8=====D Speak into the MIC you scumbags.


What I find most disturbing is that this man is seeking to penalize fellow legislators for standing their ground to defend constituents. I don't doubt there are also sexual abuse survivors in HIS district, whom he's more than willing to throw under the bus for some other "special interest" group's wants or demands. That it was caught on an open mic and made it to public knowledge is a good thing; unfortunately those in his district will probably go ahead and vote for him again anyway.


We need mandatory term limits for all politicians especially in AZ. And don't tell me about elections unless you can demonstrate how your puny vote can stand up to the millions of dollars in bribes from special interests. We have no chance without TERM LIMITS.


Makes one wonder why these republicans don’t want to pass a bill that extends the statute of limitations on sex crimes. Could it be the skeletons hiding in their closet.


Well, considering that it's far more widespread than most realize, that'd be my 1st suspicion. I do NOT advocate just taking an alleged victim's word for it and ruining another's life; but if there is credible evidence that such act did occur, it definitely warrants penalty, and allowing time for the victim to "feel" safe enough to remember and report, if the abuse was early in life and repressed.

Big Rich

Why politicians are more hated than used car salesmen.....


These are the kinds of clowns we elected to represent us, so we have nobody to blame but ourselves.


How about Term Limits?


"there has to be repercussions in the long term, because if we encourage this behavior, it's only going to get worse, not better." -some douchebag

This kind of behavior?? Trying to include provisions that would protect and empower victims of Sexual Assault??? Republicans are a lost cause people.. the quicker conservatives jump that ship the better off EVERYONE will be "in the long term", as it was so specifically put...


Guess you never heard of a critter called a RINO; that's someone who is a leftist pretending to be a Repub; who votes and behaves like the leftist he/she is!


How is there even a question about passing this bill?
The voters will remember legislators that put other considerations ahead of victims' rights at election time. Period.


Doubtful; Americans in general seem to have extremely short memories, and as soon as the news moves on, so will most of them.


Everything else aside, how can you people in the Legislature be against this bill? I would expect that any of you putting other considerations ahead of enhancing Victims' Rights will come back to bite you come election time. The voters won't forget this, I assure you.


Ms Gerry - Have you read the ENTIRE bill? There are likely provisions in it (like EVERY bill) that result in unintended consequences. Very few bills are as transparent as you might want to believe.


"OK gang..." Now, that's honesty (behind closed doors).


That part made me LOL. start at 5:53..

"they should keep their mouth shut!" .... "Ok Gang we got a hot mic"

Can't make this sh** up.


He (honestly) referred to his cadre as a gang. That is a group which preys on society, and is concerned only with it's own interests.

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