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Election Reform Movement Launches Two Initiatives

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 5:27 PM

This article was written by Barbara Villa for Arizona News Radio.

If a new movement gets its way, you’ll be voting on campaign transparency and open primaries as soon as this November. The “Open and Honest” Coalition filed with the Secretary of State’s office Thursday for two ballot initiatives. One requires disclosure of campaign donors who chip in $10,000 

or more. The second allows people to vote in primaries as Independents. Under current law, an Independent can vote in primaries only after they’ve re-registered with a party. Then after the election, they can once again register as Independent.

Coalition members marvel how the causes of fighting campaign dark money and equal access to primaries have united people across the political spectrum. Ex Governor Fife Symington aide Chuck Coughlin helped Symington defeat Democratic challenger Terry Goddard in 1990 and 1994. But now, Coughlin’s once political foe is now his ally. “It’s our two party system injected with the steroids of dark money that is broken and is in danger of destroying our American experiment,” declares Coughlin

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Former attorney general launches Election Reform Initiatives

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 5:22 PM

This article was written by Bob Christie for the Associated Press.

PHOENIX (AP) - A former Arizona attorney general and a former Phoenix mayor are launching a campaign to bring elections reform to voters through a pair of ballot measures.

The Open and Honest Elections Coalition is sponsoring a measure to increase disclosure requirements for groups contributing more than $10,000 to a political campaign and a second measure to put all Arizona candidates on a single primary ballot.

Former Attorney General Terry Goddard and former Phoenix Mayor Paul Johnson are sponsoring the bi-partisan initiatives in conjunction with HighGround Inc., a political consulting and lobbying firm. The coalition’s goals are to limit the influence of dark money in Arizona elections and make it easier for Independents to get on the ballot.

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Coalition files initiatives on dark money, top-two primary

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 5:13 PM

This article was written by Jeremy Duda for the Arizona Capitol Times.


A coalition looking to dramatically overhaul Arizona’s election system filed initiatives that replace the state’s partisan primary elections with a “top-two” primary system and impose stringent election spending disclosure requirements to combat the phenomenon of anonymous spending known as “dark money.”


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Constitutional Amendments Would Fundamentally Change AZ Elections

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 5:06 PM

This article appeared on 550 KFYI News.

(KFYI News) — Arizona's primary elections and the issue of "dark money" political spending would undergo radical changes if voters approve two proposed constitutional amendments.

A group calling itself the "Open and Honest Coalition" has filed paperwork with the Arizona Secretary of State's Office allowing it to launch a petition drive to get the two amendments on the November ballot.

One amendment would recognize that independent voters ("no party preference") are now the largest bloc of voters in the state at 36 percent.  However, members of the Coalition say, independents are largely shut out of the process of determining which candidates will be on the general election ballot, and it's nearly impossible for them to get an independent candidate on the ballot.

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Coalition Launches Effort On 2 Election Reform Ballot Measures

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 3:47 PM

Listen to Mark Brodine interview Co-Chair of the Open and Honest Elections Campaign Chuck Coughlin on KJZZ.

A coalition hoping to put two election reform measures on this year’s ballot is officially starting its effort Thursday.

The Open and Honest Coalition wants Arizona voters to decide on changes to the election process and disclosure of so-called “dark money.” Chuck Coughlin, president of the consulting firm Highground is a co-chair of the coalition, which includes two people against whom he’s run campaigns: former Phoenix mayor Paul Johnson and former attorney general Terry Goddard.

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Arizona group proposes changes to state's elections

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 3:23 PM

This article was written by Will Stone for KJZZ.

Arizona could open up primary elections and the source of major campaign contributions if two constitutional amendments garner enough signatures and votes.

On Thursday a bipartisan group, known as the Open and Honest Coalition, announced its ambitious campaign to reform the state's election system with two voter-approved measures.

One would let all candidates appear on the ballot in the August primary, and then the two with the most votes would move on to the General Election. The other initiative would require outside groups that receive a contribution of more than $10,000 to disclose the source.

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Group launches effort to ID 'dark money,' change primary

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 3:00 PM

This article was written by Howard Fischer for the Arizona Daily Star.


PHOENIX — Saying the current system is broken, a group has launched a two-pronged campaign to convince voters to make major changes in the state’s political system.

One measure would revamp the election system for everything from statewide to local offices to operate closer to how most cities do. All candidates would run against each other in the primary, with the top two vote-getters facing off in the general election, regardless of party affiliation.

Proponents note there are more Arizonans registered as independents than with either major party.

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Anuncian campaña para reformar elecciones primarias en AZ

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 2:56 PM

This article was written by Rafael Carranza for La Voz.


Una coalición de diversos líderes comunitarios, activistas y ex funcionarios públicos anunciaron el jueves una campaña para reformar el sistema electoral de Arizona con el propósito de abrir las elecciones primarias a votantes independientes y de aumentar la transparencia de los candidatos.

La Coalición Abierta y Honesta (Open and Honest Coalition) presentó dos iniciativas frente a la Secretaría del Estado mediante la cual votantes de Arizona podrían decidir en noviembre si se reforma la constitución estatal para permitir esas dos metas.

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Proposals seek to upend Arizona election system

Posted by Kellie Ryan on January 22, 2016 at 2:45 PM

This article was written by Mary Jo Pitzl for The Arizona Republic.


Unlikely allies want to shake up Arizona elections with proposals outlawing anonymous corporate political donations and replacing a primary system they say favors the extremes of both major political parties.

The proposed ballot measures are being spearheaded by two former Phoenix mayors who ran as Democrats for governor and the Republican political consultant who most recently backed Gov. Jan Brewer.

But Terry Goddard, Paul Johnson and Chuck Coughlin say they've found common ground in a quest that Coughlin describes as an effort "to reinvent the architecture of Arizona politics."

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