The turf war between the Arizona Secretary of State and the Clean Elections Commission is continuing, but on a slower timetable and with softer, yet stern, rhetoric. On Thursday, Secretary of State Michele Reagan told the five commissioners to “tread lightly” as they consider a rule that could force disclosure of so-called “dark-money” contributors. “I believe you have noble intentions,” Reagan said. “You want to be able to rein in groups if they corrupt our election system.” But, she continued, the way the commission is trying to do that would set a precedent that she called “extremely troubling.”
Reagan argues the commission has no authority to force political committees to file campaign reports, something that would require naming donors.
But commission chairman Thomas Koester said part of the duties voters gave the commission when they approved its creation in 1998 was to do voter education — and that includes shedding light on campaigns and who is funding them.