Archives for April 2015

NEW POLL: Support for Glendale Casino Collapses

The following outlines the key findings from an automated survey commissioned by Coleman Dahm and Associates. Coleman Dahm does not have any financial interest on this issue. Interviews were conducted April 27, 2015 with likely statewide voters. The margin of error for the entire sample (n=845) is +/- 3.42% at the 95% confidence level. Initial support for the proposed casino collapses once voters become aware of the fraudulent activities of the Tohono O’odham Nation:

Initial Ballot Informed Ballot Differential

Initial Ballot                Informed Ballot                 Differential

SUPPORT                                            54%                           39%                                        -15%
OPPOSE                                               37%                           55%                                       +18%
UNDECIDED                                        9%                             6%                                          -3%

There is overwhelming support for Senator McCain and Senator Flake’s legislation to prohibit any new casinos from being built in the Phoenix area:

McCain/Flake Legislation

SUPPORT                                                61%
OPPOSE                                                   33%
UNDECIDED                                            6%

There is also broad support for the actions of the Governor, Attorney General, and the Arizona Department of Gaming to not certify gaming activity at the proposed Glendale casino.

Governor/AG/ADOG Activity

SUPPORT                                                56%
OPPOSE                                                   37%
UNDECIDED                                            7%

FINAL CONCLUSION

Based on the survey results there is overwhelming support from voters to oppose new gaming in the Phoenix metropolitan area. Once voters become aware of the various issues surrounding the conduct of those involved with this proposed casino, opposition grows by 18% to a clear majority in opposition. This survey shows that most of Arizona’s elected officials are acting with large support for their activities in trying to stop this casino.

Arizona Republican Party Rejects Bid to Close Primary

By Christopher Herring

During a contentious debate, the Arizona Republican Party’s executive committee rejected a proposal to close future primaries to independents.

Although there are good faith arguments in favor of limiting participation to Republicans only, the perception, and most importantly, the financial cost, outweighed any potential benefits.

In 1998, voters approved a measure that allowed independents to vote in the primary of any recognized party. Now part of the Arizona Constitution, the law initially conceived by a Republican controlled legislature, would likely be defended by the Arizona’s Attorney General’s office, greatly increasing the financial cost and risk to an already budget strapped political cycle where every dollar counts.

A significant obstacle to the party is the notion that Republicans support the rule of law and the Arizona Constitution. Suing the state to not administer its constitution isn’t the best headline for the party. Another significant challenge would be that the state party would have to show a severe burden is caused by independents voting in Republican primaries. Specifically that independents voting changed the ideological outcomes of elections in a manner significant enough to overturn the will of the voters to keep the primary open. In the most recent elections, independents have not voted in high numbers in party primaries and the case can be made that Arizona Republicans are more conservative than they have ever been on fiscal and social issues. Proving a severe burden would be a large task for the party’s attorneys.

In fact, every scenario discussed to close the primaries were fraught with risk. Whether it was a lawsuit, assuming the financial obligation of administering the entire primary, or funding a lawsuit to close the primary, the cost would be shouldered by all Republicans with no guarantee of success and a likelihood of failure.

The singular criticism surrounding the partially open primary is the moderating effect it creates on Republican elections. Although independents are growing in America and in Arizona, Republicans continue to enjoy a significant voter registration advantage over the Democratic Party and continue to hold onto every major statewide elected office. Judging by the lack of moderate or liberal Republicans holding statewide offices, it is difficult to prove that the small number of independents are gaming the Republican primary.

If there is a real fear in closing the primary outside of costs, it is alienating Arizona’s right leaning independents. In fact, as independents continue to grow, the Republicans cannot simply ignore their growing influence but must be continually active in persuading them that their principles are aligned with traditional party beliefs. Many independents describe themselves as conservatives but simply don’t want the label of Republican.

The state executive committee made the right call to not divert resources away from the continued march of winning elections and enacting conservative policies by embarking on long and expensive lawsuits with no guarantee of success. Arizona’s Republican Party consists of a diverse group of voters, fighting for conservative principles that make our lives better every day. The Party, under the leadership of Robert Graham, should continue to focus on what it is doing well, winning short term victories and building long term relationships to enhance the Republican brand in Arizona.

Christopher Herring is the President of the Maricopa County Young Republican Professionals and member of the Arizona Republican Party Executive Committee.

AZGOP Chairman Robert Graham’s Sacrifice Means Victory

By Daniel Stefanski

A hearty thanks to AZGOP Chairman Robert Graham for working through another executive board meeting! Today, it sounds like the board voted against funding a lawsuit for closing Republican primaries. As it should have been, Robert allowed the motion to be voted on, and the representatives of the precinct and state committeemen did what they felt was in the best interest of the Arizona Republican Party and election victories in 2015 and 2016.

And for all the heartache by a select few over the closed meeting today, it was not closed to those who were duly elected in previous elections. Want to sit in and participate in future state party executive meetings that may be closed to observers? Run for election for one of those positions next time around. The process isn’t being obstructed. It’s being followed to the letter of the law.

Robert Graham voluntarily signed up for a non-paid job with round-the-clock hours, but he did not sign up for a job that featured lies, distortion and people from his own party working against future Republican victories to serve their own self interests. Before this meeting, Robert did not fight against the resolution to close our primary. Rather, he expressed his opinions and waited for the process to carry itself out. While false allegations that Robert was carrying out other interested party’s wishes swirled around prior to today’s meeting, it is now a fact that the AZGOP executive committee voted within their rights and responsibilities to table the closed primary funding proposal.

Though one will never come, I think Robert Graham is owed an apology for the way he has been treated and maligned by people who claim to be in the same party as him.

And to make up for an apology that will never come, I think Robert deserves thanks and encouragement by all those who appreciate the 2014 victories he was very instrumental in helping to achieve. We who were involved in the 2014 campaigns know how hard the State Party worked throughout the entire cycle.

Robert and the Arizona Republican Party have pledged to stay neutral in primaries, and they have remained faithful to that promise. The AZGOP has also always upheld the party platform during Robert’s tenure as chair. Those who claim that Robert is attempting to pave a path for any individual primary contender are doing so without any factual basis. Robert is not going to pull any favors for any candidate in a contested primary election, and he’s not going to lead the AZGOP towards an ideological potion that does not adhere to the entirety of our platform. Activists may “want” him to do their work for them in a contested primary election, but he’s just not going to do play favorites. So to save everyone’s time, let’s support our primary candidates and await the time when the AZGOP will be waiting for the Democrats with guns a-blazin’ after the winning Republicans make it past their primaries.

Thanks as well to everyone who sacrifices their time to serve at the AZGOP and on the executive committee!

Let’s work for some more GOP victories in 2015 and 2016! Who’s with me?!