Category Archives: Elections

Arizona Democratic Legislative Campaign Sees a Blue Wave Sweeping the State House

Murphy Bannerman, ADLCC

Communications and Research Coordinator Murphy Bannerman and Executive Director Charlie Fisher of the Arizona Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (ADLCC) are both optimistic that Democrats will take over one or both of the State Houses in this November’s elections, based on four reasons:

  • There is a record number of 114 Democratic candidates (just over half of whom are women and 51 are people of color).
  • There is a groundswell of progressive enthusiasm after the election of Donald Trump.
  • The Red for Ed movements has galvanized educators and school employees to support Democratic candidates.
  • District snapshots, conducted by the ADLCC, that shows targeted districts that are “likely to flip from red to blue.”

The ADLCC, an arm of the Arizona state Democratic Party that coördinates with the county and local district offices, was designed to help recruit, throughout the year, Democratic Candidates to run for every Legislative District (LD) State Representative and State Senate seat. They are also tasked with providing training on how to run and budget a political campaign. Their only focus is on state legislative seats.

(They are not involved with statewide offices like Governor, Attorney General, or US Senator. They do not aid in National Congressional races either. They also are not involved in promoting ballot initiatives, leaving that to the candidates to endorse if they want.)

Continue reading

Dirty trickster Roger Stone concocts a new conspiracy theory for Dear Leader

The thing about conspiracy theorists is that when their conspiracy theory is debunked, they never concede “Sorry, my bad. I was wrong.” No, they just alter their conspiracy theory and keep it alive.

A few weeks ago Donald Trump and his GOPropagandists at FAUX News aka Trump TV, in particular Trump’s Minister of Propaganda Sean Hannity, were pushing the “Spygate” conspiracy theory, asserting than an FBI informant was embedded as a “spy” in the Trump campaign.

This manufactured conspiracy theory quickly fell apart when Rep. Trey Gowdy, himself the purveyor of the “Benghazi!” conspiracy theory, went on Trump TV and dismissed President Trump’s ridiculous claim that his campaign was spied on by the FBI in 2016. Trey Gowdy rejects Trump’s Spygate theory. “I am even more convinced that the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do when they got the information they got,” Gowdy told Trump TV.

House Speaker Paul Ryan said later that House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy was “accurate” when he argued the FBI has acted appropriately in its ongoing probe of potential Russian links to the Trump campaign. House Speaker Paul Ryan sides with Trey Gowdy over Trump on ‘Spygate’.

Continue reading

Federal court strikes down Kansas proof of citizenship law for voter registration

Kansas and Arizona both use a “dual” election system based upon the form of voter registration one uses.

NoVoteBoth states refused to allow those who use the federal voter registration form, which requires only an attestation of U.S. citizenship, to vote in state and local races after losing a legal challenge earlier to require the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) to add the state-specific requirement of proof of citizenship to the federal voter registration form for Kansas and Arizona. Voters using the federal voter registration form can only vote in federal races.

This “dual” election system is being litigated in Kansas, and on Monday, the U.S. District Court for the state of Kansas, once again, struck down that state’s proof of citizenship requirement for voter registration, finding that Secretary of State Kobach had failed during trial to show evidence of widespread voter fraud. Judge Rejects Kansas Law Requiring Voters to Show Proof of Citizenship:

The ruling was a blow to Mr. Kobach, a Republican who has emerged as a national figure on [voter suppression], a candidate for governor of Kansas and an ally of President Trump in part by claiming that large numbers of noncitizens have cast ballots in American elections. Experts on election law say that there is no evidence that voter fraud is a pervasive problem.

For Kansas voters, the decision means that in elections this fall, people will not be required to provide proof of their citizenship in order to register to vote, as required under a Kansas law passed in 2011.

Continue reading

SCOTUS punts on two gerrymandering cases

The U.S. Supreme Court began the day with 19 argued cases yet to be decided. This included two of the most highly anticipated cases of this term involving political gerrymandering, Gil v. Whitford (Wisconsin) and Benisek v. Lamone (Maryland).

Today the U.S. Supreme Court disappointed everyone by punting on these two cases. It was an anticlimactic end to these gerrymandering cases, which are likely to return in the future with additional cases moving through the appellate courts pipeline.

In Gil v. Whitford (.pdf) Chief Justice Roberts held that “The plaintiffs have failed to demonstrate Article III standing.”

The right to vote is “individual and personal in nature,” Reynolds v. Sims, 377 U. S. 533, 561, and “voters who allege facts showing disad- vantage to themselves as individuals have standing to sue” to remedy that disadvantage, Baker, 369 U. S., at 206. The plaintiffs here al- leged that they suffered such injury from partisan gerrymandering, which works through the “cracking” and “packing” of voters. To the extent that the plaintiffs’ alleged harm is the dilution of their votes, that injury is district specific. An individual voter in Wisconsin is placed in a single district. He votes for a single representative. The boundaries of the district, and the composition of its voters, deter- mine whether and to what extent a particular voter is packed or cracked. A plaintiff who complains of gerrymandering, but who does not live in a gerrymandered district, “assert[s] only a generalized grievance against governmental conduct of which he or she does not approve.” United States v. Hays, 515 U. S. 737, 745.

Continue reading

Statewide Democratic Citizens Clean Elections candidate debates online

The Arizona Citizens Clean Elections Commission hosts (during election years) candidate debates for contested races between those seeking public funding (clean) and those raising funds privately.   AZ Blue Meanie posted the entire statewide schedule earlier, but here’s the listing for the few contested Democratic races, statewide.  The Republicans have their own contested candidate forums.  Videos of these debates will be posted online as well.

Governor (3 candidates – Steve Farley, Kelly Fryer, David Garcia):  August 2,  5:30 p.m., view online at Arizona PBS

Secretary of State (3 candidates – Katie Hobbs, Mark Gordon, Leslie Pico):  July 18, 5:30 p.m. view online at Arizona PBS

Superintendent of Public Instruction (2 candidates – Kathy Hoffman, David Schapira): https://azpbs.org/news/horizon/horizon-episodes/#episodePlayer  (held on June 13)

Corporation Commission (3 candidates for 2 seats – Sandra Kennedy, Bill Mundell, Kiana Sears):   June 27, 5:30 p.m. view online at Arizona PBS

Continue reading

A Better Future for Phoenix Drives Daniel Valenzuela in his Quest to Be Mayor

Phoenix Councilmember and Mayoral Candidate Daniel Valenzuela

With popular Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton resigning his office to run for Kyrsten Sinema’s Ninth Congressional House Seat, a special non-partisan election will be held this November to elect his successor who will preside over the fifth largest city in the country.

There are two Phoenix Council Member Democrats vying to succeed him. They are Kate Gallego (who represents Phoenix District Eight) and Daniel Valenzuela (who represents Phoenix District Five). The Blog For Arizona is profiling both candidates and interviewed both on their positions on the issues and their vision for moving Phoenix forward. This piece describes Councilmember Valenzuela’s goals and vision for the fifth largest city in the country.

Continue reading