Hey, Independents! Here’s your chance to retaliate against the AZ GOP by playing in their primary


cryingteabagbabyEarlier this year I posted about the Arizona Republican Party’s Winter State Committee Meeting, This week in the Arizona GOP’s war on democracy, at which the AZ GOP made it abundantly clear that they want nothing to do with so-called “independent” (no party preference) voters.

Independents are part of  “the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids.” (Dr. Strangelove).  Tea-Publicans really do not want independents playing in their primary election, and adopted  resolutions to exclude independent voters from their primaries:

There was a “Resolution Urging The Institution of Caucuses to Nominate Candidates for General Elections,” because “Republicans should nominate Republicans without the threat of outside interference.” In other words, the Arizona GOP is opposed to Arizona’s semi-closed primaries in which registered independents are allowed to vote. They want a caucus where only the GOP crazy base is allowed to vote to preserve the purity and sanctity of the “precious bodily fluids” of the Arizona GOP. In fact, the resolution calls for an amendment to the Arizona Constitution “to allow parties to nominate candidates for each partisan office by caucus.”

In other words, no primary elections, and presumably the end of nonpartisan elections, and you registered independent/no party preference voters can all go to hell! I would recommend to all registered independent/no party preference voters that you send the Arizona GOP the same message this fall.

On second thought, independent voters can retaliate against the AZ GOP right now by playing in their primary election. The AZ GOP still wants nothing to do with independent (no party preference) voters, as the Arizona Capitol Times (subscription required) reports today. Closing ranks: As more AZ independents vote in primary, GOP eyes closing them:

The number of independents voting in the partisan primary election on Aug. 26 is expected to surge this year. And with nearly all the primary election action concentrated on the Republican side, independents are overwhelmingly choosing to vote in the GOP primary.

As a result, Republican Party leaders are concerned about independents’ potential to water down the party’s influence and lead to more moderate Republicans getting nominated.

Republican leaders are reacting by attempting to close the GOP primary system to independents in 2016 and beyond. The approach would be to allow only registered Republicans to vote in the primary or move to a caucus system in which the precinct committeemen choose the Republican nominee for office.

Maricopa County Republican Party Chair A.J. LaFaro is one of many Republicans calling for closing the primary to fend off the moderating influence of independents. He argues that closing the primary or moving to a caucus system would give Republicans the ability to hold accountable candidates who are Republicans in name only.

And the movement — motivated by fear that independents will help select candidates who are not faithful to the Republican Party platform — is gaining momentum.

“The nominating process, I think, should be reserved for those individuals who are of the party,” LaFaro said. “We’ll absolutely be looking very hard for that before the (2016) election.”

* * *

Republican Party leaders argue the increase in independents voting in the Republican primary could lead to the party nominating candidates who don’t hold true to the party platform.

“(Independents) can dilute the Republican platform, the Republican values. Those individuals who are independent voters, if they had strong conservative values, then they would be a Republican,” LaFaro said.

He said the party nominating process should be for members of the party — those who actually subscribe to the GOP ideals, instead of unaffiliated voters who just decide to pull a Republican ballot because that is where the action is.

* * *

In January, the Maricopa County Republican Committee voted overwhelmingly in favor of a resolution to “encourage our party’s leadership to immediately take all actions needed to close our primary.”

The resolution stated that Arizona’s semi-open primary process allows “those who do not subscribe to the principles of this party to vote in our primary elections” and allows independents to choose a GOP nominee who is not a “true” Republican.

The statement alleged that independents do this with malice.

“Non-Republicans (vote in the primary) to hurt the nomination choice of the registered party candidate to run in the general election,” the resolution states.

Also in January, the Republican state committee overwhelmingly supported a resolution urging the party to move toward a caucus system in which the precinct committeemen to select the GOP nominees for partisan offices.

Drawing on the First Amendment right of free association, the resolution states that “Republicans should nominate Republican candidates without the threat of outside interference.”

The committeemen called on GOP lawmakers to refer to the ballot an amendment to the Arizona Constitution to allow parties to nominate candidates by caucus, and urged county parities to adopt similar resolutions.

* * *

But independents say that any attempt to close the primary or move to a caucus system could backfire on the Republican Party.

Independents make up the largest group of voters in Arizona, and the AZ GOP does not want you. This is your opportunity to retaliate against the AZ GOP by playing in their primary.

Then remember in November that the Democratic Party does want your vote, is actively seeking your vote, and welcomes you into the party. You have a home in the Arizona Democratic Party.


  1. I changed my voter registration from (D) to (I) “no party preference” just so I could have a say in the Republican primary this year. I’m tired of standing on the sidelines year after year and watching GOP Tea Party wing nuts make it out of the primary and then win in the general in November simply because they have an (R) next to their name.

    These threats about closing the primary are obviously more about extremists fearing they’re going to lose the control they’ve had over the legislature the last several years, than they are about real electoral reform. It’s funny how the “caucus nomination suggestion” mirrors the Tea Party, “Repeal the 17th” talking point that gets made at the national level.

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a group so afraid of voters.

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