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Many Arizona Latinos Dissatisfied with Two Major Political Parties

Posted by Kellie Ryan on December 17, 2015 at 1:24 PM

This radio program aired on Arizona Public Radio.

A new study shows many of Arizona’s Latino voters are dissatisfied with the two major political parties. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.

The study was commissioned by Open Primaries, a group that advocates for nonpartisan elections. It surveyed 1,500 out of the state’s more than 600,000 registered Latino voters including independents, Republicans and Democrats.

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Arizona independents are rising and demanding equality

Posted by Kellie Ryan on November 20, 2015 at 10:11 AM

This OpEd was written by Open Primaries Arizona Campaign Director Patrick McWhortor for the Arizona Capitol Times.

At last, a spotlight is on the most important group of voters in Arizona: independents.

A recent study published by the Morrison Institute for Public Policy at ASU focused on the largest group of registered voters in our state, and highlighted one essential fact – their numbers have grown from 11 percent in 1992 to 37 percent today, and they keep growing. This is consistent with national reports, which indicate 43 percent of Americans identify as independents. Voters are fleeing the parties, including a majority of new millennial voters, who refuse to join a party in the first place.

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Arizona organization fighting for non-partisan primary elections

Posted by Kellie Ryan on November 05, 2015 at 5:16 PM

This piece was written by Corbin Carson for KTAR News

PHOENIX — Political parties are using Hispanics like pawns, according to a campaigner for non-partisan primary elections.

Armida Lopez, Latino outreach coordinator for Open Primaries Arizona, said the organization wants every candidate to face every voter in their constituency.

“What we want is for every candidate, regardless of their party affiliation — if they’re red, if they’re blue, [or] independent — every candidate should have to face every voter in their constituency,” she said. “Not just their base.”

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Both parties use Hispanics as a political football – enough already!

Posted by Armida Lopez on October 22, 2015 at 10:48 AM

This OpEd was written by Open Primaries Outreach Coordinator Armida Lopez for Fox News Latino.

Latinos have been portrayed as single-issue voters and at times we’ve been guilty of reinforcing the stereotype that all we care about is immigration reform. As the daughter of two immigrants, I strongly support the need for immigration reform. I, like most Americans, also care deeply about education, the economy, health care, climate change and the conflict in the Middle East. 

So why are Latinos sidelined from these policy debates by the media and our elected officials?

I have seen firsthand how both political parties have used our community as a political football. Now more than ever, the two parties are leveraging important issues for their own gain while neglecting any sort of sensible resolution.

I am a young Latina millennial woman in Phoenix, Arizona. My parents migrated to the U.S. from Mexico to work in agriculture over 30 years ago. Farm work is rigorous physical labor, with long hours and little pay. My father spent 20 years of his life in the fields. He also marched alongside one of the greatest community organizers in the history of the U.S., Cesar Chavez, to try and end injustice against farmworkers.  

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Pushing for open primaries

Posted by Caitlin Kelly on July 02, 2015 at 3:27 PM

This article was published by Jeannette Cruz on West Valley View. 

PATRICK MCWHORTOR, campaign director for Open Primaries, speaks to Estrella Rotary Club members about changing Arizona’s election system at the club’s June 16 meeting in Avondale. Submitted photo

PATRICK MCWHORTOR, campaign director for Open Primaries, speaks to Estrella Rotary Club members about changing Arizona’s election system at the club’s June 16 meeting in Avondale. Submitted photo

Campaign director speaks at Estrella Rotary Club meeting; wants issue on 2016 ballot

Open primaries were the topic of conversation at the Estrella Rotary Club’s monthly meeting June 16 at Estrella Mountain Community College in Avondale.

Patrick McWhortor, campaign director for Open Primaries, was the guest speaker.

Open Primaries seeks to change Arizona’s election system to an open, nonpartisan primary, and is aiming to put the issue back on the ballot in 2016, even after voters rejected the idea in 2012.

When talking about this issue, we go back to tradition — consent of the government — which is what our founders set up,” McWhortor said. “When you open up your faucet and the water comes out, it doesn’t matter whether someone was Republican or Democrat when they decided how that water would come out of your faucet. You don’t ask whether it’s red or blue, do you? That’s what we get when we have people who are working hard for our best interest as a state.”

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Partisan system: Is it working? Is it fair?

Posted by Caitlin Kelly on July 02, 2015 at 3:14 PM

This article was published by Paul Johnson on AZ Big Media. 

The evidence says that we should be optimistic about the future.  Through innovation, entrepreneurs and dynamic businesses, we are on get verge of driverless cars, new energy sources, a cure for cancer, extending human life and untold millions of other wonderful discoveries.  Here in Arizona we have an amazing potential for job growth and an expanding economy. 

If businesses and entrepreneurs are our greatest hope, our political system is our greatest threat.

Burdensome regulations, a mounting $17 trillion debt, the possibility of not extending the debt ceiling, and destroying the good faith and credit of the United States. The failure to pass immigration reform.  An educational policy where one party continues to cut spending while the other wants more money but fights any meaningful reform to hold the system accountable.  And Arizona elected leaders pass laws that make us the ridicule of the nation and cause us real losses in economic development.

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