Progressives, we have a situation…
If you want to get big money out of politics and you like Arizona’s Clean Elections system, it’s time to speak up to save it. Irregularities in the 2016 election prompted proposed rule changes by the Citizens Clean Elections Commission. (There are three versions of R2-20-702 and a new rule R2-20-703.01 – here. You can send your comments to email@example.com or go to this link and submit comments by June 19, before the commission votes at its next meeting on June 22, 2017.)
Below is the back story and a detailed explanation of the proposed rule changes.
After collecting the requisite number of petition signatures and $5 qualifying donations from people who can vote for them, Clean Elections candidates (like me) receive lump sums of $16,000 for the primary and $24,000 for the general election– in exchange for vowing not to take big money donations. With seed money and family money, the total for a Clean Elections candidate is roughly $45,000 for a Legislative campaign. All unspent CE funds must be returned to the CE commission, and all unspent seed money or seed money overage must be returned to the individual donors.
During the 2016 election, two Democratic Party Clean Elections candidates turned over all or most of their CE funds in a lump sum to the Arizona Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (ADLCC) of the Arizona Democratic Party (ADP) to run their campaigns, provide paid staff, and purchase/design/mail their printed materials. ADLCC provides these services to many traditionally funded candidates and offered them to CE candidates as well in 2016. A problem arose with at least two CE candidates because the party didn’t provide individual invoices for specific services rendered.
Southern Arizona Legislative candidates arranged by the total amount they raised by June 1, 2016. The percentage of PAC funds is given at the top of each column. Green bars are Clean Elections candidates. (Source data: SOS Campaign Finance system.)
June 30 was the deadline for statewide and legislative candidates to file their campaign finance reports. Data nerds like me love slogging through the Secretary of State’s website for Ah-Ha moments of discovery. And there are some.
Remaining funds for each Southern Arizona Legislative candidate, after reported expenses have been subtracted. Green bars are Clean Elections candidates. (Source data: SOS Campaign Finance system.)
My primary reason for looking at these data was, of course, to gauge my campaign against others in Southern Arizona. For nearly a year, people have been telling me not to run as a Clean Elections (CE) candidate because “it’s just not enough money.” These two graphics show a somewhat different picture.
The top graphic shows that Daniel Hernandez (D-LD2) blew the doors off the fundraising barn by gathering $60,437, but Hernandez spent $25,489 to get there, leaving him with $34,948 on July 1. (Yes, of course, he can keep dialing for dollars every day from now until November 8, but that is a lot of time and manpower.) Ana Henderson (R-LD9) with $21,345 is the Clean Elections candidate with the most funds on July 1; she has spent only $1,367. You can see how the difference between these two candidates flattened out when you take into consideration the money Hernandez had to spend to raise $60,000. (Since Clean Elections has strict rules on how much we can collect in seed money and family money and how we receive once we have qualified for public funds, all of the candidates who have qualified for CE have roughly the same amount. Note the green bars on both graphs. (Fun fact: all of the qualified CE candidates in Southern Arizona are women.)
Let’s compare Hernandez to the other two candidates in the LD2 Democratic Party primary.
Posted in Arizona State Legislature, Campaigns, Economics, Elections, Pamela Powers Hannley, Primaries
Tagged Andrea Dalessandro, Arizona Clean Elections, campaign finance, Corin Hammond, Courtney Frogge, Daniel Hernandez Jr., Dr. Randy Friese, Kirsten Engel, Mark Finchem, pamela powers hannley, Rosanna Gabaldon, Steve Farley
The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a petition Monday morning from conservative groups seeking to throw out a multi-year “John Doe” probe into Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s 2012 recall campaign, leaving the dispute to be sorted out in state court.
Lyle Denniston at SCOTUSblog reports, Court bypasses Wisconsin political fray:
The denial of review in O’Keefe v. Chisholm, without comment, turned aside a plea by a conservative political activist to revive a civil rights lawsuit against a special prosecutor over an investigation of supporters for the governor’s anti-union efforts.
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The Court’s refusal to get into the middle of a bitter, mostly partisan feud in Wisconsin was not a surprise, because the case is still undergoing review in the Wisconsin Supreme Court and the groups complaining about the prosecutor have already been able to stop a series of investigations that had run on nearly five years.
Posted in AZBlueMeanie, Campaigns, Corruption, Election Integrity, Elections, Ethics, Governor, Justice, Law Enforcement, Media, Party Politics, President, Primaries, Scandals
Tagged campaign finance, dark money