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Author Archives: Christian Palmer

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IRC split on cooperating with AG investigation (access required)

The Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission could stumble into another partisan divide, but this time it involves whether members will cooperate with Attorney General Tom Horne’s investigation into whether the commission violated open meeting and procurement laws when it hired a mapping consultant in June.

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Bipartisanship endangered, not extinct

It was announced this week that the National Institute on Civil Discourse awarded its first grants to several UofA departments: one to watch how politicians handle confrontational questions from constituents and another to read comments left by readers of the ...

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How to buy the benefit of the doubt, for nothing

Several years ago I attended a government commission meeting where an appointed chairman openly rejected an assistant attorney general’s recommendation to convene an executive session.

“No, I don’t think we need an executive session to talk about this,” the chairman said, to the best of my recollection.

It’s not that every — or even most — public bodies are eager to shut their doors to the public. It’s that confidence is inspired in government when the doors remain open when the real decision-making process begins.

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Matching funds: Remember the departed as they were

The big news this week is the U.S. Supreme Court striking down Arizona’s matching funds provision from Clean Elections. The ruling could be a game-changer for some who will seek legislative and statewide elected positions. But it also begs the question: What will we really be missing?

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