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New contribution limits could be game-changer for campaigns (access required)

New contribution limits could be game-changer for campaigns <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Campaign cash may come pouring into some of Arizona’s top races next year thanks to a new law allowing candidates to raise far more money.

Critics say the bill will flood campaigns with more money and influence-buying, and that it may be the final nail in the coffin of Arizona’s voter-approved Clean Elections system.

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Stripped of matching funds, Clean Elections loses appeal to candidates (access required)

With the linchpin of Clean Elections gone, participation in Arizona’s once-vigorous campaign financing system has nosedived to levels not seen since the program’s infancy.

Only 72 candidates have signed up for public financing this election cycle, compared to 121 in 2010.

The reason: Clean Elections suffered a devastating blow in the middle of the 2010 campaign season, when the U.S. Supreme Court blocked the state from distributing matching funds.

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Deal with the devil?

With fewer legislative candidates taking advantage of the state’s public campaign finance system, the CCEC is putting its stamp of approval on legislation to greatly alter the scope and intentions of Clean Elections.

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Year in Review: High court puts spotlight on AZ in 2011

Robes and gavels were a large part of Arizona’s political scene in 2011. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on a landmark election law case that came out of the state and agreed to hear SB1070. The state Supreme Court resolved conflicts involving the Independent Redistricting Commission and trial courts were busy with lawsuits contesting cuts to Medicaid and the candidacy of a Mesa woman in the recall election of former Senate President Russell Pearce.

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Summer cleaning for CCEC rules

For years, members of the Legislature sought to pass bills to force the Citizens Clean Elections Commission to annually publish how many pages of rules and regulations were being imposed on candidates. But today, the commission began the process of reducing the quantity of its rules in response to the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in June.

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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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