Arizona Clean Elections Repeal Measure Heads to 2012 Ballot, Fight Just Beginning

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Last night, the Arizona state legislature voted to send to the ballot a measure that would repeal the popular and successful Clean Elections law, which voters passed at the ballot in 1998. Opponents of the law, backed by wealthy special interests determined to return to calling the shots in the state Capitol, were finally able to pass a repeal measure after years of trying. This news comes on the same day that new polling was released that shows that Arizona voters like the Clean Elections law and want it to remain on the books.

After getting a short description of the law support rises with 77% of Arizonans in favor, 14% opposed, and just 9% undecided. Independents very strongly support Clean Elections with a description (79% favor, 12% oppose), as do Democrats (80%-7%) and Republicans (74%-19%).

"Voters clearly want to keep this Clean Elections law in Arizona," pollster David Mermin said in a telephonic news conference. "They also support strengthening the law."

Some in the legislature clearly agree: "I say heaven help anybody who votes against Clean Elections," said Sen. Paula Aboud, D-Tucson in a story.

The Clean Elections law in Arizona has been popular since it's implementation in 2000, and as the polling shows, the lawmakers who voted for the repeal measure are clearly out of touch with their constituents. Public Campaign Action Fund has worked closely with allies on the ground in the state to beat back repeal efforts in the past, and will continue to fight to preserve the law at the ballot in 2012 (also in a potential legal challenge to language of the measure in the coming weeks). The Arizona Clean Elections law has been a model for other states and at the federal level and we aim to keep it that way. Stay tuned for updates going forward, and rest assured, this fight is just beginning.

Click here for the full Arizona polling.

Click here for the story.