What is Terry Goddard thinking??


Crossposted from DemocraticDiva.com

open primaries dark money
Already trying to make them look similar. Except they’re not. Not even remotely.

Ugh. (Emphasis mine.)

“They both help each other,” [Paul] Johnson said. “The polling was very clear. If they both end up on (the ballot), even through independent efforts, they both help each other.”
More public support may be just what Open Primaries Arizona needs. When Johnson ran a top-two primary measure in 2012, it suffered a landslide defeat. Two-thirds of Arizonans rejected the plan, which garnered only 33 percent of the vote. Johnson’s group is making some changes to the top-two plan, which he said will make it more palatable to voters.

Open Primaries Arizona has commissioned several polls on the top-two primary and other election reforms, including requiring dark money to be disclosed, as other election spending is. Chuck Coughlin of HighGround, which Johnson’s group has retained (!), said polling has shown a lot of support for both ideas.

The link is to an AZ Capitol Times article that is behind a paywall but the gist is that Terry Goddard is considering joining forces with the wealthy political operatives behind Top Two Primaries so as to better the chances of his Dark Money initiative to get on the ballot and pass. Paul Johnson et al are now spinning a tale about how a colossally dumb plan to give Arizona voters two, and only two, options for every general election race is somehow simpatico with mandatory disclosure of campaign contributions. If those things don’t sound remotely related it’s because they aren’t.

Look, I get that Arizona politics can be a chummy club where politicians and consultants regularly make strange bedfellows and that Goddard is deeply committed, for reasons of principle and possibly his legacy, to getting his Dark Money prohibition passed. But Chuck Freaking Coughlin?! Uh, remember 2010? I, and a whole bunch of other people do. Joining forces with a Coughlin-led effort would show an incredible level of forgiveness on Goddard’s part for both SB1070 and his resulting loss in the election that year.

Also tone deafness. Chuck Coughlin. SB1070. Damn.


  1. Arizona Advocacy Network (AZAN) polled voters in March with the help of Dr. Bruce Merrill, exploring a 2016 initiative. Likely 2016 voters want a comprehensive anti-corruption initiative that includes a total gift ban; a real conflict of interest law that prohibits officials from voting on laws that enrich themselves or family members; exposes secret, unaccountable money, and increases funding for Clean Elections candidates. Less than 50% of voters believe more disclosure is enough to reclaim our elections or reduce influence by big money. State and national partners support AZAN’s effort over others for a bigger impact on behalf of voters, not donors. AND, AZAN will be educating voters again on the ills of “top 2” and why the Money (Coughlin) supports it.

    • It has always been interesting to me that how people respond to a pollster does not not necessarily reflect the way they vote. I suspect people give pollsters the answers they think sounds “good”. But when they vote, they vote on one or two issues that have nothing to do with what they told the pollster.

  2. rich old white democrats are desperate to pursue their run for office ego trips. nearly 70% of white voters voted republican in 2014 and latino democrat voters what their own candidates raul grivjalda not fred (please vote for me republicans) duval. 100 latinos turn 18 thats voting age every day in arizona and 20 republicans die every day. the democratic party’s future is latinos not rich old white farts!

    • Is it, Captain? I know the numbers would tell that story, but Latinos are not good at getting out the vote. If that continues, it doesn’t matter how many Latinos turn 18 every day, nothing will change.

  3. What a surprise! In order to defeat the evil Democrat nightmare of “dark money”, the proponents are willing to get into bed with less savory types to make it happen. Right out of the Democrat Playbook: the ends always justifies the means.

  4. Sounds like Terry’s desperate. That’s too bad. Also has he unveiled his dark money initiative language yet?

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