Defending Clean Elections

Almost from the moment Arizona voters created Clean Elections, it has been under attack from moneyed interests who the can't stand the idea of politicians being accountable to voters rather than money. 

In addition to our work defending Clean Elections from legislative attacks, we are ever-vigilant in the media and at the Clean Elections Commission itself.

Clean Campaign Funding

Probably the best known feature of Clean Elections is the opportunity it offers to candidates to run for state office without having to raise large sums of money from private sources (who often have their own agendas). Despite the Supreme Court's disastrous 2011 decision striking down the law's matching funds provision, candidate funding is still a vital component of Clean Elections. 

The Arizona Free Enterprise Club - which filed the case leading to the Supreme Court's decision on matching funds - and its allies are not done trying to eliminate clean funding whatever way they can. They've taken their fight to the Commission, stirring up fabricated problems based in rumor and innuendo in an attempt to get the Commissioners to impose onerous rules on Clean candidates. Since these rules wouldn't apply to privately-funded candidates, while the legislature is making it easier for traditional candidates to raise gobs of money, this would further tilt candidates' incentives away from running Clean. 

We saw what happened when the incentives tilted after matching funds went away. We must not create new rules that discourage candidates from participating in Clean Elections on the basis of a campaign of lies propagated by those who would be happy to see Clean Elections go away. 

 

Independent, Bipartisan Watchdog

Aside from giving candidates a clean way to run for office, the voters created the Citizens Clean Elections Commission - the state's only independent, bipartisan body to guard against the influence of massive amounts of unaccountable spending on our elections. 

Unsurprisingly, the Free Enterprise Club's campaign of lies extends to this aspect of Clean Elections as well. We're pushing back on their attempts to spread these mistruths through the local media.