Guaranteed-Clean Redistricting

By Trent Lange, Letter to the Editor

Johnson points out how much more competitive political races have been in Arizona than in California since Arizona instituted redistricting reform. But that's only part of the story, because Arizona also instituted "clean money" public financing of campaigns for all its state offices in 2000. Incumbents in California almost always overwhelm their opponents with money they've raised from special interests. Arizona's election system, on the other hand, provides matching funds when participating candidates are outspent, resulting in a level playing field. This explains why more legislative seats changed hands in Arizona in 2006 as much as redistricting does.

The California Clean Money and Fair Elections Act (AB 583) would set up a similar "clean money" system in California. If the legislators want to assure the public that campaigns are competitive in exchange for loosening term limits, they should pass it along with redistricting reform.

President, California Clean Money Action Fund
Los Angeles

See the article on Los Angeles Times website

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.)

   Become a Clean Money Member