Constantin Querard’s op-ed, “Why Clean Elections Days are Numbered” makes several claims that mislead readers and distract them from the viability and proven effectiveness of Arizona’s strongest anti-corruption law, the Citizens’ Clean Elections Act.Contrary to what he writes, Clean Elections was a reaction from Arizonans outraged by political scandal and officials selling out to powerful groups and donors.
Federal appeals judges expressed skepticism Monday over Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s argument that a federal commission must make voters who register using a federal registration form provide proof-of-citizenship documents required by state law.Kobach argued on behalf of Kansas and Arizona before the10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver, in a case where the states are trying to force the federal government to add their requirements to federal vote registration forms mandated by the National Voting Rights Act, also known as the motor voter law.
Now that SB1344 has taken effect, I write to announce that the Clean Elections Commission will continue its mission without change. Popular wisdom among election-law commentators asserts that the bill cut back on the commission’s duties. That view is wrong. The Legislature did not have the votes to overturn the judgment of Arizona citizens that the commission should have the right to investigate, and if necessary assess penalties, for any violation of the Clean Elections Act. The Act calls for stiffer penalties for violations of reporting requirements and contribution limits, for all legislative and statewide candidates, “participating” or not.
Arizona may be stuck in a drought, but our political system is submerged under a mudslide of dark money, layered with political corruption. U.S. Supreme Court decisions, most recently McCutcheon and Citizens United, have overturned 100 years of anti-corruption laws, made corporations into people and mysteriously turned money into "free speech."