Arizona Citizens Supporting Honest Representative Government At All Levels
Sen. Paul Boyer said he’ll refuse to vote for a budget unless lawmakers agree to expand opportunities for victims of child rape and sex abuse to sue their abusers.
The Phoenix Republican told the Arizona Capitol Times that victims should have seven years after their age of discovery – that is, the age at which they can reasonably be expected to realize they were raped or abused earlier in life – to file civil complaints against their assailants and anybody who knew but did not report the abuse.
It’s not everything Boyer had hoped for, but it’s at least an improvement on Arizona law that provides only a two-year statute of limitations that starts when a victim turns 18, he said. And if Boyer doesn’t get his way, he’ll make life difficult for Republicans trying to pass a budget, a vote that could occur within days or weeks.
It takes 16 votes to pass bills in the Senate, and with 17 GOP senators, Republicans can’t afford to lose more than one vote and still pass a budget without an assist from Democratic senators, who rarely vote for GOP-led budgets.
Boyer said the matter is important enough to warrant his protest.
“In my mind, if we can’t protect kids then I don’t know what we’re doing here,” he said. “I think what I’m asking for is very reasonable.”
So far Boyer has been stymied at every turn in his effort to change the current law.
“What we’re doing now as a state policy is we’re saying no matter how much evidence you have… It doesn’t matter. If you’re 21 or older, your time’s up,” he said. “I’m just allowing victims the opportunity just to make their case before a judge. All I’m asking for is seven years from when the victim should’ve known they were harmed.”
Arizona has no statute of limitations on criminal charges for violent sexual assault or sexual abuse of a child 15 or younger. Victims have testified that civil lawsuits against their abusers aren’t just a source of justice for individual victims but a way to identify abusers who have not faced criminal charges.
Boyer introduced a bill earlier this year that would have given victims until age 25 or seven years after they first tell a psychologist or medical doctor about the abuse — whichever came later — to sue their abusers and anyone who protected them. But the measure was never given a hearing in the Senate, where Sen. Eddie Farnsworth, R-Mesa, blocked the bill from advancing through the Senate Judiciary Committee.
He says, “In my mind, if we can’t protect kids then I don’t know what we’re doing here,” and yet these same folks passed SB1346 that will hand children over to homo-sexual child preditors for sexual grooming under the guise of "Comprehensive Sex Ed" (CSE)
Protecting the children sounds good on the surface, but this extension is a Pandora's Box. People will be coming out of the woodwork making false claims that something happened 20 years ago, ruining someone else's life in a quest for a windfall. And there will always be psychologists who validate, encourage, and sometimes even plant such memories, and others that will testify in court based on shaky evidence. That is exactly what happened to the McMartins who owned and operated a day school in CA and were ruined, both financially and by reputation, during the day care sex abuse hysteria in the 80's. And then there are the poor kids who likely had trauma through the whole experience feeling they might have been abused, even though they weren't.
You guys remind me of something my daddy said. Well, no it was not my daddy but was someone I admired:
DO NOT LET THE PERFECT BE THE ENEMY OF THE GOOD.
It is a good saying but does not apply here.
YES, it does. You just don't want to see it.
We will agree to disagree
I agree with Harry. The likely negative risks far exceed any difference between perfect and good, if that is the purpose of the phrase (hard to tell).
And it is not only men that have been falsely accused and ruined. Some women, too.