Thursday, April 24, 2014

AZ Senate passes bill to weaken clean elections

The AZ Senate bill to relax restrictions on coordination of independent expenditure groups with campaigns has gone to the Gov.

In the kind of last-minute twists and turns that typify the slouch toward sine die, the Senate killed, then reversed course and passed a bill dealing with elections violations.  Senate Bill 1344 removes the authority of the Clean Elections Commission to enforce campaign violations against candidates who run using private financing.  Lawmakers amended the bill to accommodate a request from the Arizona Chamber of Commerce to loosen a requirement that blocked anyone connected with an independent-expenditure committee from participating in a candidate's campaign. The exemption would apply if the staffer had no involvement with decisions made by the IE.

As SCOTUS adds more dark money to our elections, AZ Senators work to weaken campaign finance laws.  It's called "feedback loop" - more money --> weaker laws --> more money ... ad nauseum.

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