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Judge: Arizona campaign finance laws unconstitutional (access required)

Judge: Arizona campaign finance laws unconstitutional <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

A Maricopa County Superior Court judge ruled this month that the state’s most fundamental campaign finance laws dealing with the registration of political committees and reporting of contributions and expenditures are unconstitutional.

The ruling won’t affect campaigns this election cycle, but it threatens to upend the state’s campaign finance system for future elections.

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Herman Cain gives money to oust Speaker Tobin

Former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain and two wealthy contributors to conservative causes are funding an independent expenditure campaign aimed at ousting House Speaker Andy Tobin and replacing him with a first-term Republican lawmaker who made waves in 2011 for pointing a loaded gun at a reporter during an interview.

According to a campaign finance report filed Monday, Arizonans for an Honest Government raised $40,000 through the middle of August. Cain gave the committee $5,000 on Aug. 2.

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Retired court justice O’Connor urges civility

TUCSON — When Sandra Day O'Connor was a member of the Arizona Senate in the 1970s and needed to get business done, she would bring folks from both sides of the aisle to the adobe house she and her husband built, serve Mexican food and beer and work things out, civilly. Sadly, politicians in Arizona and the U.S. are struggling with the concept of civil discussion — unfortunate, because civil discussion leads to "good civic action," O'Connor said July 19 at the YWCA Tucson.

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Adams, Salmon spar over veracity of ‘Obamacare’ ad (access required)

If Republicans are united in anything, it’s an overwhelming hatred of Obamacare. And it’s that raw emotion that former Arizona House Speaker Kirk Adams hopes to tap into with an accusation that his opponent, former Congressman Matt Salmon, lobbied to pass the landmark health care overhaul legislation.

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Crandall threatens lawmaker’s bills in sign feud (access required)

In a voicemail message left on the cell phone of a legislator he says harassed his daughter last week, Sen. Rich Crandall suggested that he would work to kill her bills next year.

“I’m furious at you right now,” Crandall said in the July 12 message for Rep. Brenda Barton, R-Payson. “You better not try to run any education legislation next year.”

(Plus, listen to the voicemail)

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Politics is not the place for religious evangelism

Our presidential election campaign is picking up steam, and money is being raised as never before, mostly to convince voters that the other party’s guy is a very poor choice to be president. Most voters have already dug in and need little convincing that their views are a kind of political light that must prevail over the opposing darkness. It’s as if we have brought religious sectarianism into our politics as they have been doing in Iraq and now in Egypt.

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Brewer decries Obama “backdoor amnesty” policy (access required)

Gov. Jan Brewer decried President Barack Obama’s new DREAM Act-style immigration policy as “backdoor amnesty” intended to undermine SB1070 and bolster his political support for his re-election bid.

Speaking to reporters during a rare press conference in the Executive Tower, Brewer, one of Obama’s most nationally prominent critics on immigration and border security policy, said the president’s announcement set a dangerous distraction from the need to secure the border.

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