April 5, 2005
The Arizona Citizens Cleans Elections Commission voted 4-0, without comment, to take no action Monday on nine complaints filed against election candidates from 2002 as a protest for state actions against several Republican lawmakers this year.
Patrick Meyers, a Republican from Anthem, filed the complaints to question a commission policy that requires candidates to list the final recipients of all campaign spending.
This policy conflicts with a standard campaign practice of paying a consultant to handle a variety of activities including the design and purchase of literature and media advertising.
The commission didn’t adopt a new rule, but relied on a new interpretation of
existing campaign finance law and applied it to the 2004 elections.
Meyers filed complaints against several state officials and lawmakers, including Gov. Janet Napolitano and Attorney General Terry Goddard.
Lawyers for both officials told the commission at previous meetings the complaints should be dismissed because they were filed too late.
Commission chairwoman Marcia Busching said after Monday’s meeting the commission wasn’t establishing a policy related to new complaints against 2002 candidates.
But commissioners took a single vote Monday, Busching said, because the complaints filed so far deal with standards for candidate conduct that changed between the 2002 and 2004 elections.
"That seems a little strange, that they can decide what rules they want to enforce and when," Meyers said Monday. "At least the public is now aware that there might be something wrong with this commission to begin with."
Meyers said he plans to file additional complaints against state candidates from 2004.