Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
Oh, I can already hear the gnashing of teeth and wailing, and the rendering of garments by the corporate media villagers who just love "good government" (Goo-Goo) proposals that promise simplistic solutions, but fail to deliver as promised. At least I will no longer be waging this fight alone.
Howard Fischer reports today (Updated) County attorney Montgomery leads new fight against open primary plan - East Valley Tribune:
[Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery] will be leading the effort to convince voters to keep the partisan in partisan politics.
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The formation of the Save Our Vote Committee comes on the heels of the failure of Gov. Jan Brewer and legislative Republicans to dull the move -- and possibly confuse voters -- with a competing measure of their own. But that plan fell apart when some GOP senators refused to go along.
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Montgomery said he can't say where the group will get the money for its campaign, saying that is being handled by others. There was no immediate response to messages to the organization's treasurer.
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So far, though, the opposition is all Republican: Montgomery said the other person involved in marshalling opposition to the initiative is former GOP Congressman John Shadegg.
But Montgomery and foes are not relying on public relations to kill the initiative. He said foes of the plan are weighing a legal challenge to have the issue kicked off the ballot.
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The potential legal challenge arises because the Arizona Constitution requires that all proposed amendments be limited to a single subject. Montgomery charges that this measure violates that because it affects everything from how candidates qualify for the ballot to how they qualify for optional public financing.
[Former Phoenix Mayor Paul Johnson, leading the initiative drive] said Montgomery is off base, saying the proposal has been vetted by attorneys.
There are other legal problems with this initiative, such as it fails to identify a revenue source to pay for it as required by Proposition 101 (2004). Arizona voters approved Proposition 101, amending the Arizona Constitution "to require all subsequent ballot initiatives and referendums to specify a new source of revenue for any required expenditure." No source of revenue is identified in this initiative.
The initiative also conflicts with the charter city provision of the Arizona Constitution. Charter cities, such as Tucson, have constitutional rights that include the power to decide both whether to elect council members on an at-large or district basis, and whether to conduct elections on a partisan basis. Arizona Supreme Court unanimously rejects 'Paton's Law'.
For contact information for the Save Our Vote Committee see Campaign Finance - Filer Details (Save Our Vote, opposing C-03-2012).
While The Arizona Republic shills for the Open Elections/Open Government initiative, über-conservative Robert Robb is opposed to the Open Elections/Open Government Act initiative, albeit for different reasons. Robb is opposed because he believes the initiative is aimed at über-conservatives like him. 'Top-2 primary' no magic pill for moderation:
The purpose of the initiative should be stated plainly and bluntly: It is to reduce the influence of conservative Republicans in Arizona.
The rhetoric used to sell it will be more lofty. There will be a pretense of deploring extremism on both sides of the political divide.
But what's driving the initiative isn't a concern that the Democrats who get elected in Arizona are too liberal. It's a call-to-arms reaction to a bone-deep belief that the Republicans who run Arizona are too conservative.
According to proponents, the top-two primary system is the magic pill that will put an end to that.
The financial backers of the Open Elections/Open Government are what I would refer to as "Chamber of Commerce" establishment Republicans -- the Greater Phoenix Leadership, the Southern Arizona Leadership Council and the Flagstaff 40. Paul Johnson has said that more than 60 CEOs have signed on to support the effort. “That’s really where it began. It began with a group of CEOs that were very discouraged by what was happening to the state, our inability to focus on economic development and education, and the fact that extreme measures had kind of spilled over the edge,” he said. (Yellow Sheet Report, July 5, 2012).
I am somewhat surprised that Robert Robb is opposed to this initiative since he was a "Chamber of Commerce" establishment Republican, serving on the executive committees and boards of directors for the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce (as vice president for public affairs and as vice president for governmental affairs and publications). Perhaps his radicalization is the result of his time at the Goldwater Institute. RobertRobb.com.
Despite Paul Johnson's frequent abuse of false equivalency "deploring extremism on both sides of the political divide," As Robert Robb noted, what this initiative is really all about is "Chamber of Commerce" establishment Republicans desperate to find a way to take back the GOP from the Christian Dominionists and the Birthers-Birchers-Secessionists of the Tea Party who have hijacked the GOP and its label.
The civil war within the GOP is no reason to change Arizona's elections laws. The answer is for the factions within the GOP to part ways and form their own political parties. The "Chamber of Commerce" establishment Republicans own the GOP label. The Christian Dominionists and the Birthers-Birchers-Secessionists of the Tea Party are radical extremists who can form their own political party and get their own party label.
I have heard members of these Chamber of Commerce organizations bemoan the Tea Party candidates in the GOP in private, but if you bother to check the campaign finance disclosure statements, you will find that these very same individuals continue to give money to the very same candidates whom they bemoan in private.
Here's an idea geniuses: stop giving these radical extremists your money! Are you so wedded to your "Republican businessman" caricature that you cannot bring yourself to give money to reasonable Democratic candidates who are better for your business? Stop the insanity!