Mesnard said he was floored on Tuesday when all but two House Dems voted against H2665 (campaign finance; election; candidate committees), his campaign finance cleanup bill, and caused it to lose its emergency clause.
The rewrite of the Voting Rights Act currently being debated in Congress would free Arizona from nearly 50 years of strict federal oversight to changes in its voting laws.The rewrite comes after the Supreme Court last summer struck a key provision of the 1965 act that required some or all of 15 states – including the entire state of Arizona – to get Department of Justice “pre-clearance” of any changes to their voting laws because those states had a history of discrimination.
Two years ago the Republican-controlled Legislature sought to get voters to kill the Citizens Clean Elections Act, claiming it’s wrong for politicians to get public money. Now some of those same GOP lawmakers want to belly up to the bar and get handouts of public dollars for everything from sending out communications to constituents to buying tickets for special events.
For a brief, giddy moment, Sean Noble -- a little-known former aide to an Arizona congressman -- became one of the most important people in American politics.Plucked from obscurity by libertarian billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, Noble was tasked with distributing a torrent of political money raised by the Koch network, a complex web of nonprofits nicknamed the Kochtopus, into conservative causes in the 2010 and 2012 elections. Read the rest of this in-depth report Here.
A bill that would prohibit the Citizens Clean Elections Commission from investigating allegations of campaign contribution limit violations is part of a “war on voters” by Republican lawmakers, leaders of voter-rights groups said Wednesday. At a news conference, the Arizona Advocacy Network also objected to a resolution that would put voter-approved laws back on the ballot after a set number of years.
Only in Arizona would repealing a voter suppression law be an act of voter suppression. But that’s what is happening. Last year the Arizona Legislature passed House Bill 2305, a wickedly broad piece of voter-suppression legislation that they hoped no one would notice. But they did.
Arizona Politics, Where Cash Is King
Feb. 6, 2014 — Ever since the first democracy in Athens initiated its first electoral process, money has played an integral part in framing and formulating the discussion and sometimes the outcomes of elections.
Whether the example be the forefathers of Pericles in Athens or a more contemporary one, the democratic principle is that regular people have a say in the result. But those with resources have always used those resources to help bring about a political outcome they desire.
It’s almost as natural as the best lion ruling the pride.
8 Ways to Help Overturn Citizens United
Four years after the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission Supreme Court ruling -- a ruling that Senator John McCain described as "the worst decision ever" -- we've seen a torrent of big money sweep through our local, state and national elections. In 2012, candidates and groups spent over seven-billion dollars trying to influence the election outcomes. The bulk of the money came from a small group of super-wealthy political contributors. For example, 61 people who gave an average of $4.7 million dollars each, combined matched the total amount of money raised through small dollar donations by both major party presidential candidates. As a result, our government looks less and less like a democracy -- rule by the people -- and more like a plutocracy -- rule by the wealthy.
The official constitution for the state of Arizona includes a preamble, 30 “articles,” a big bunch of “sections” and all kinds of legal gobbledygook, but I could not find a single reference proclaiming the law of the land simply as: “Money talks.”Still, it must be in there. During the last legislative session Arizona lawmakers passed a bill that makes campaign cash more important than voters, and late Tuesday the state Supreme Court said it was ok for that law to go into effect, a law that not only says money talks but that money shouts.That money rules! While voters? Not so much.
Redistricting Commission supporters want to bar legislature from challenging law
Supporters of the Independent Redistricting Commission want a federal court to rule that the Arizona Legislature has no right to challenge the voter-approved law.Attorney Tim Hogan is pointing out to the judges that the commission was created in 2000 not by the Legislature but by voters themselves. The Arizona Constitution specifically precludes lawmakers from seeking to alter or repeal what voters have enacted.
Republicans — Yes, Republicans — Are Joining the Battle Against Big Money Politics
After the 2012 election, the Republican National Committee published a 100-page autopsy nobly titled the “Growth and Opportunity Project” that pointed the supposed way forward for the humbled Grand Old Party. Regarding the dark-money-driven, super-PAC-mad politics of today, the document left little doubt about the party’s view: Let the money flow.
States Renew Battle To Require That Voters Prove Citizenship
The conservative-driven movement to expand voter restrictions in the name of reducing polling booth fraud has often been described as a solution in search of a problem. Despite evidence suggesting voter fraud is rare, it's a crusade that has proved so durable in GOP-dominated states like Arizona and Kansas that its leading proponents are undeterred — even by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Judges Aren't Stupid and Neither Were Voters
Wercinski: Intent clear with Clean Elections, Voter Protection acts
Was Robert Robb's Nov. 15 column, “Contribution limits: Read the law, not the tea leaves,” intended to be dumb or just dumbfounding?
Yes, a judge applies the law to the facts and circumstances in a case — assuming the law is constitutional. Yes, legislative enactments are presumed (by lawmakers) to be constitutional, although in Arizona there’s a history of that not being the case.Laws and the words that make them are subject to interpretation, which is why Arizonans value fair and impartial courts.
Arizona's 2-track voting plan to be costly
Arizona is creating a two-track voting system, with one track that will accommodate a tiny fraction of the state’s voters at a cost of hundreds of thousands of dollars to county governments.Last month, Secretary of State Ken Bennett said the switch is needed in the wake of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that determined Arizona cannot impose its proof-of- citizenship requirement on voters who use a federal voter-registration form. The citizenship requirement applies only to those registering with Arizona’s state form.
Court: Candidates must use lower contribution limits
Candidates for city, school board and other local offices can continue collecting campaign donations capped at $5,000 per donor.But for now, candidates running in statewide and legislative elections must abide by donation limits that have been in place since earlier this year. Any attempts to collect higher contributions allowed by a new state law that is on hold could result in campaign violations and fines.
Abrahamson is top recipient; justices remain involved in 98 percent of cases involving attorney donors
In January 2009, Milwaukee area attorney Mark Thomsen donated $5,000 to a Wisconsin official’s political campaign. Thomsen soon sent an additional $500 just eight days before the official cast a key vote on an insurance issue that greatly affected Thomsen and his clients.
Candidates: Turn back those dollars
Now that a court has slapped a preliminary injuction on higher campaign contribution limits, an advocacy group is urging candidates to refun anything they collected in excess of the previous limits. “We intend to educate voters about donor contributions that violated the Clean Elections Act and encourage all candidates to return amounts in excess of the voter approved limits,” the network’s executive director, Sam Wercinski, said in a statement.
Today, Arizona Court of Appeals Judge Randall Howe ordered the following in the special action filed by the Citizens Clean Elections Commission, state Rep. Victoria Steele, CCEC commissioner Louis Hoffman and the Arizona Advocacy Network to challenge the hubris of the Republican majority in the Arizona Legislature regarding campaign contribution limits:
Wed Jul 17, 2013- Lawmakers were wrong to raise campaign-contribution limits by up to 10 times current caps without asking for voter approval, according to a special action filed Wednesday with the Arizona Supreme Court.
The lawsuit seeks to block House Bill 2593 from taking effect on Sept. 13. The action was filed by the Citizens Clean Elections Commission, Commissioner Louis Hoffman, the Arizona Advocacy Network and state Rep. Victoria Steele, D-Tucson.
June 21, 2013- On June 17, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the right of every eligible American to register to vote using a national standard that eliminates unnecessary barriers. The decision was authored by one of the court’s strongest state’s rights advocates, Justice Antonin Scalia.
Fri, June 21, 2013- On June 17, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the right of every eligible American to register to vote using a national standard that eliminates unnecessary barriers. The decision was authored by one of the court’s strongest state’s rights advocates, Justice Antonin Scalia.
- NYT: Justices Block Law Requiring Voters to Prove Citizenship
- Senate lawmakers move to overhaul public financing
- Ken Bennett, Arizona Secretary of State, Reportedly on Payroll of FreedomWorks Board Member
- Arizona Secretary of State on payroll of Freedomworks activist
- Action lacking despite opportunities to improve Arizona’s lobbyist reporting system
- Intereses con dinero ganan más influencia política en Az
- Rising cost of influence peddling in AZ
- Arizona Governor Jan Brewer increases state campaign finance limits
- Brewer increases Arizona campaign finance limits
- Gov. Brewer should veto election-donation bill
- Ariz. proposal would flood money into politics
- Arizona Legislature Approves Increase To Campaign Contribution Limit
- Arizona’s 2004 voter-ID statute is biased, should be thrown out
- Supreme Court should end Arizona's voter-registration law
- Supreme Court to weigh Arizona's voter-ID law
- Clean Elections are Vital
- Report: Arizona lawmakers bought by corporate interests
- Arizona Republic Editorial gets it: Voters support Clean Elections Act
- Provine and Teran: Stopping the war on voters
- Residents rally against money in politics, war on voters