Open Government Committee Files Initiative with Arizona Secretary of State

The following initiative has been filed with the Arizona Secretary of State’s Office:

Open Elections/Open Government Act

“This measure will allow all Arizonans, regardless of party affiliation, to vote in a single open primary for the candidates of their choice. The two candidates who receive the most votes in the primary will compete in the general election. There will be a level playing field for all voters and candidates, and the current system of taxpayer-funded partisan primaries will be abolished. This reform will promote open government and encourage the election of candidates who will work together for the good of the state.”

The Committee is listed as follows:

Open Government Committee
Paul Johnson, Applicant & Chairman
5125 North 16th Street, Suite B226
Phoenix, AZ 85016
(602) 684-3143


  1. Paul Johnson says

    Finally. I am all for this. Been needed for a long time. Vote person, not Party. I am a resident of Chandler and not the same Paul Johnson who has written this initiative.

    • Paul Johnson, the Democrat and spokesman for the several billion dollar Phoenix bond programs. The shady land deal Paul Johnson?


  2. Double Decaf Latte says

    This will push the Pearce folks over the edge. First their patriot hero goes off the cliff and then the voters pass this fair game initiative. Yes

    Bring on a new era where the AZ legislature is no longer a laughing stock.

    • Conservative American says

      Lewis supporters claim that the election is not about immigration issues but Mr. Lewis has devoted a portion of his campiagn webiste to immigration issues and states that he supports “immigration reform”. The only problem is that Lewis doesn’t tell voters what that means in terms of actual legal provisions.

      Stop avoiding the issue, Mr. Lewis. If elected, what will be the specific legal provisions you will seek to implement to deal with our illegal immigration and illegal alien problems?

      • TruestoftheTrueAmericanConservative says

        Astute analysis of the ballot initiative. On topic!

        • Conservative American says

          Excuse me, Meathead, but you wrote this: “This will push the Pearce folks over the edge.” You introduced Pearce into the issue, not I. If you want to talk Pearce, then I’ll talk Lewis.

  3. Phillip the Great says

    Paul Johnson ought to take a course or two in logic, Constitutional Law, and maybe peruse some of the cases that decided the free association rights of political parties. This is a dumb idea, and here’s why:

    Tipoff #1: any reform proposed when one duly-elected party is in control and the other is not is suspect.

    Tipoff #2: if the problem is that primaries are taxpayer-funded that’s pretty easy to fix.

    Tipoff #3: of the two parties, the one that can actually exert enough pressure to get candidates on the ballot or keep them off is going to have the upper hand. If the party can’t do it, then it will be the interest groups, the lobbyists, the deep-pockets and the wackos calling the shots.

    Tipoff #4: voters who perhaps want reform have already registered as independents, where they can vote in either party primary.

  4. Veritas Vincit says

    Another boneheaded idea from the Looney Tune Left … Lets count the ways the voters have been duped into driving Arizona into a hole…

    Citizens Clean Elections Commission
    Citizens Independent Redistricting Commission
    Citizen mandated term limits… how’s that working out for ya?
    Citizen mandated LOCKED IN FUNDING for a state referral agency for early childhood benefits that includes billboards on the interstates – K-12 needs funding but First Things First gets the money thanks to voter ballot initiative
    Citizen mandated LOCKS on annual budget increases for more than 60% of Arizona’s expenses (no matter what, these annual spending increases are mandated by the voters and cannot be changed without a massive ballot effort

    and now this dumb idea from the party who can’t win in the arena of ideas so instead chooses to simply change the rules (again). A primary election is for registered political parties to pick their nominee for the general election in which everyone who wishes to be on the ballot can be placed on the ballot.

    How many registered political parties are there in Arizona? And, if you don’t like them you are free to organize your own political party and nominate your own candidate in the primary election… this initiative is a dumb solution to a non-existent problem written by folks who either cannot compete on the existing playing field or simply are too ignorant of civics to understand the current system.

    Arizona is broke because of voter mandated ballot box boners, and now they are proposing this one.k

  5. Veritas Vincit says

    Oh and I almost forgot, Jan Brewer’s voter approved self-tax increase. That really solved the problem didn’t it?

    And lets not forget Prop 301 to help out Education… that really helped out didn’t it?

    Stupid voter ballot initiatives are what’s driven Arizona into the ditch… that and Janet Napolitano (but then again, voters put her in office too).

    Just like the Pearce recall, who is looking at where the money comes from to sell these boneheaded ideas to the voters…

    Come to Arizona with a stupid California (or Wisconsin idea) and give it a catchy name and begin selling. Don’t look too closely at where the funding comes from.

  6. Double Decaf Latte says

    There you go again Conservative America…. changing the subject and blaming the wrong person for it. Is there a minute of your day when you are not posting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting, and then reposting the same thing over and over again….it doesn’t mater what the subject of the post the man regurgitates the same thing and here comes the spew. He must have a bad case of Acid Reflux.

    What’s so wrong with letting the people decide….I guess if it’s banning gay marriage it’s GOOD, if it’s legalizing medical marijuana it’s BAD, Clean Elections BAD (unless the candidates are running are Ultra Right Wing free-loaders who slurp at the public-funding. I’m thinking: hmmmmm folks like: Colette Rosati, David Burnell Smith, John Kavanagh, Donald Trump’s friend out in Anthem, Michelle Ugenti. And if I remember right I think that the Mesa legislators like Karen Johnson and Pearce have been government funding slurpers in the past. (Isn’t that how CQ makes his money running dim bulbs like Colette Rosati. There was no question who had his hand up her (insert your own word) and moving her lips at the Clean Elections Debate against Carolyn Allen. Carolyn Allen and Michelle Reagan have never asked asked taxpayers for a single dime (kind of makes you wonder who is the REAL REPUBLICAN)

    So it kind of depends what the issue is and whether it’s your ass getting burned if you are for and against letting the voters decide.

    I think it’s a great idea. And I’m not surprised the Republican party and the lip flapping, bobble-heads like Conservative America would be against it. Mocha with double whip for anyone?

    • Veritas Vincit says

      So, lets see if there’s an analogy here… what exactly is a “Double Decaf Latte”? Coffee with caffeine removed diluted with lots of non-dairy creamer and sugar? No wonder DDL holds one of the worst Republican’s ever to hold office in such high esteem. Someday maybe we’ll explore that retired office holders relationship with Shea Homes that left such a strong stench just east of Apache Junction. Can we say political favors boys and girls? As for the other legislator DDL seems fond of? Judging from this season and the award received that individual is well on their way to political patronage too.

      What’s so wrong with misguided ballot box governance? Obviously DDL you can’t read either.

  7. Maybe Paul, former mayor Johnson, has been speaking with Philberto.
    If Independents want to field enough candidates to have a primary, go at it.
    The purpose of joining a political party is to support a platform and candidates that
    reflect the values of a Party. Non-partisan elections such as city elections are held that way, and IMHO work for the small municipal/school election.

    Forget it Paul. This is a thinly veiled attempt to stifle the Republican Party.

    Paul is a DEMOCRAT.

  8. If Johnson wants to truly “open” the election process, then let’s allow all voters to vote in every jurisdiction in Arizona. Since Republicans hold first place in voter registration, that would work well for the GOP. The Yavapai and Mohave County Republicans should be able to vote in City of Tucson municipal elections. This could be great for Republicans!

    In the 2010 General Election Republicans swept every statewide office. Just like what happened with Clean Elections, the Democrats handed the Republicans a club to beat them up with. It’s the perfect example of unintended consequences. Where there’s a will, there’s a way to game the system.

    • Veritas Vincit says

      Hmmm… I’m liking completely open elections. Consider the legal precedent; citizens of the Sovereign Arizona Tribal Nations may vote in state and county elections in spite of the fact that they pay no taxes in the state or county of which they vote (except for the ubiquitous sales tax).

      So why not allow all voters to vote in all political subdivisions in one big really general election? Everything nonpartisan. Just put up one massive website and every office up for grabs.

      Sounds about as good as the Open Government / Open Elections proposition.

  9. If Johnson is opposed to taxpayers funding partisan primary elections, why doesn’t he just pass a law requiring everyone to pay a fee or tax before voting? Wait! That would violate the 24th Amendment!

    You see, the act of voting is a constitutional right and because economist consider it a public good, it therefore warrants the public to finance it through taxation.

    The reality is that every election cycle some crazy leftist gets some cockamamie idea to manipulate our elections by proposing a change to the process . If you don’t believe me, remember the initiative that would have provided every voter with the opportunity to receive a lottery ticket once they voted? It was called the the “Arizona Voter Reward Act.” (Proposition 200)

    Once the wiser Democrats wake up and realize that voters will cross party lines to vote for the opposing weaker candidate to advance to a general election, they’ll oppose this stupid initiative.

  10. We should be CLOSING the primaries and ensuring the state DEFUNDS them.

    Primaries are the PRIVATE business of PRIVATE corporations called political parties.

    As such they are PRIVATE business that should be conducted PRIVATELY without state funding.

    If a party cannot afford a private primary, they certainly can affort a caucus system.

    So, take heed “conservative” state legislators, CAUCUSES are the direction you should move in allowing.

    This constitutional change Paul Johnson wants is ABSURD.

    • Pretty much agree with that. The political parties have a useful role in forming and vetting candidates and the primaries enable each party to put those to general party vote.
      The Democrats inserted a “switch parties to mess with the opposition candidates” then switch back to vote Democrat in the general elections.
      THAT should be ‘fixed” NOT opening the primaries to general voting.

      The street chant is: That’s what “Democracy looks like ” – this measure intends to move away one step at a time from the Republic structure. It’s telling that the Democrats do not want the electoral college – bad-mouthing constantly what is in fact a stroke of inspired power-balancing genius, a mechanism that brilliantly levels the rural-urban playig fields.

      WE are NOT a “democracy” but a “Republic.” Our structure brings out the better qualities of representational voting while reducing the worst qualities of popular vote – ie fads.
      STraight up “Democracy” where voters have to majority approve every move leads to anarchy, which then leads to totalitarian abuses. Any steps to eliminate the vetting, consensus and cooperative nature of primaries is a move to pure democracy, which hasn’t worked in any nation as yet and has no hope of working since human nature is exeedingly predictable in fondness for power-grabbing.

      • Paul Johnson knows EXACTLY what he is doing. The backing is coming from APS or Pinnacle West. One of their board members is on his PAC for this change.

        Their objective is the ability for the Arizona Commerce Authority and the Arizona Corporation Commission to control party politics.

        Make no mistake this has nothing to do with “Open Government” or whatever, but of the most CONTROLLED government ever yet seen in Arizona history.

        This constitutional change must be defeated at all costs.

      • Veritas Vincit says

        Well said Wanuba.

        The best and simplest definition of a Democracy?
        3 wolves and 1 lamb deciding what’s for lunch.

        Democracy sucks – its simply a vehicle to another form of governance.

    • Veritas Vincit says

      @Oberserve, you mean a private business like Solyndra or GM? Of course those are truly “corporations” unlike a political party. But Oberserve you do understand the legal and business definition of a corporation right? A political party is not, by legal definition, a corporation.

      However, a caucus would address the problem and simply end the whole primary election thing; cleaner and cheaper – and most of all, exclusive to that party. As for “independents”? When are they going to get it through their stubborn heads that being a “registered independent” is NOT a political party – its a political nothing.

  11. A timely reminder of the power-grubby mind-set in the Democratic Party from NC Democrat Governor Perdue who suddenly wants to burn the election bridges behind her now that SHE has a political office.

  12. Nordine Crub says

    Oh I see you a listening to Michael Savage again. Nordine

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