A bill preventing the Arizona Citizens Clean Elections Commission from investigating possible campaign contribution violations by candidates who don’t participate in the program has been signed by Gov. Jan Brewer. Senate Bill 1344 allows only the Secretary of State and state Attorney General to investigate. The Republican governor signed the bill Thursday. It passed the GOP-controlled Legislature this week mainly along party-line votes.
Proponents say the commission doesn’t have authority to investigate candidates who don’t take public campaign funding.
The commission says they do have authority and announced last year it planned to begin doing so. It urged a veto of the bill, saying it likely violated the Arizona Constitution and would probably face a court challenge. The Citizens Clean Elections Act provides candidates funding if they forgo private donations.