Election farce gets nod of approval
In a display of agility that would be the envy of big-top circus performers, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled Friday that a proposed initiative to create a “top-two” primary election system can be placed on the November ballot. The action overturned a Superior Court ruling that the initiative violated the single subject mandate in the state Constitution. (Separate Amendment Rule Article 21).
Read the Supreme Court’s order here. The court notes that a full opinion has not yet been issued. It will be interesting to see the cart-wheel jumping that will take place to justify this order.
On August 6, Superior Court Judge Mark Brain issued an injunction against the cunningly titled Open Elections/Open Government Act.
The initiative would permit voters to vote for any primary election candidate allowing top two finishers to advance to the general election regardless of party affiliation — virtually gutting political parties. The Maricopa County Republican Executive Guidance Committee issued a this Resolution against the Open Elections Initiative in July.
Currently County Elections Departments across the state are in the process of verifying petition signatures collected by paid circulars. The random sample failure rate in Maricopa County is at 33 percent, with Pima County showing 23 percent. Many of the “fails” are not registered voters.
Although the state’s left-wing newspaper has been relentless in pushing this ruthless charade, which uber-liberal Linda Valdez terms “a better idea,” columnist Robert Robb has been the lone standout exposing the farce. We recommend his illuminating column linked in this post. This provides a sample of his approach to the measure:
“A little honesty and sobriety is in order about the top-two primary system initiative that apparently will be on the November ballot. The purpose of the initiative should be stated plainly and bluntly: It is to reduce the influence of conservative Republicans in Arizona. The rhetoric used to sell it will be more lofty. There will be a pretense of deploring extremism on both sides of the political divide. But what’s driving the initiative isn’t a concern that the Democrats who get elected in Arizona are too liberal. It’s a call-to-arms reaction to a bone-deep belief that the Republicans who run Arizona are too conservative.”
Interestingly, the East Valley Tribune noted that two Hispanic Democrats also joined in the legal challenge opposing the initiative. Rep. Steve Gallardo of Phoenix and Maricopa County Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox said they are concerned the change being proposed would allow Anglo candidates to “game” the system, making it harder to elect minority candidates, even in districts where they are a plurality or majority.