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Campaign Finance & Elections

Can the government play favorites when it comes to freedom of speech? The Goldwater Institute didn’t think so, and challenged Arizona's system of public campaign financing all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. The resulting victory struck down similar provisions in states across the U.S., preventing governments from gaming the political system in favor of government-funded candidates, and keeping elections free and open.

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  • Arizona Citizens Clean Elections Commission v. Bennett

    Posted on August 06, 2013 | Type: Case

    On August 6th, 2013, the Goldwater Institute filed a motion to intervene in a lawsuit the Arizona Citizens Clean Election Commission filed against the state of Arizona claiming that its new campaign finance law violated the Voter Protection Act. The Goldwater Institute is asking for the right to intervene in this case to protect the First Amendment rights of candidates, political committees, and individual contributors in Arizona.

  • Phoenix and Tucson Try to Skirt Election Law

    Posted on April 18, 2013 | Type: Blog | Author: Taylor Earl

    Like most states across the country, Arizona has long suffered from abysmally low voter turnout in local elections. In the state’s two largest cities – Phoenix and Tucson – voter turnout rates for the most recent local candidate elections hovered at a mere 30 percent.

  • Voting Rights Case Important for Arizona

    Posted on February 27, 2013 | Type: Blog | Author: Clint Bolick

    Today the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in a case with huge ramifications for Arizona—and for federalism. Shelby County, Alabama is challenging the constitutionality of section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, which was designed to bring into line states and local governments that were likely to resist the Voting Rights Act.

  • Stop Governments from Campaigning on Taxpayer Dime

    Posted on February 19, 2013 | Type: Blog | Author: Christina Sandefur

    Last week, the Arizona House Judiciary Committee passed HB 2156, which would stop state and local governments from campaigning with taxpayer dollars. In Arizona, this practice is already supposed to be unlawful – state laws say that cities, counties, and schools can’t use public “resources” to “influenc[e] the outcomes of elections.” Unfortunately, courts have essentially read these laws to prohibit only electioneering that “unambiguously” urges a “yes” or “no” vote. As a result, government bodies often skirt the law and use public resources to broadcast one-sided messages about ballot measures.

  • Guest Column: ASA leaders failed to set the record straight in Goldwater report

    Posted on October 10, 2012 | Type: In the News | Author: Christian Palmer

    Arizona Students’ Association student directors from the UA on several occasions have criticized the recent Goldwater Institute report entitled “Welcome to the Real World” of being factually incorrect. As the author of the report, I would like to set the record straight, particularly when it comes to whether the ASA abided by its own bylaws when it made two separate financial contributions to the Proposition 204 statewide ballot initiative campaign.

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