Well, damn it, Hamer and Herrod have had their season but WE have a HAMMER, and we SHALL overcome.
Yesterday, the Arizona Capitol Times reported that Herrod's Dark Money operation, aka Center for Arizona Policy, has engaged in politicking for some of her wholly owned candidates for legislative races where they face primary races against GOP candidates Herrod is less likely to be able to co-opt.
The Center for Arizona Policy, the powerful evangelical Christian organization that was the driving force behind this year’s religious discrimination bill, SB1062, is activating its own corporate “dark money” group to support and oppose candidates for public office.
...has spent more than $7,500 supporting legislative candidates. So far, the group has sent out mailers on behalf of three Republican candidates who are facing primary election challenges. Aaron Baer, a spokesman for both Center for Arizona Policy and Center for Arizona Policy Action, said that the group is putting forward “a modest effort to help candidates who have stood with us or will stand with us on our issues.”CAP has admitted to supporting John Kavanagh's bid for the LD23 Senate seat, Steve Smith's effort to get back into the Senate in LD11 and not yet elected to anything Shawna Bolick (wife of Goldwater Institute lawyer Clint Bolick) in the LD28 GOP House primary.
I have to expect that come September, Herrod will have her sights set on making vicious attacks in other key races. For example, Yarbrough, without one bit of financial support from grassroots in the district he represents has a serious challenger in Kristie O'Brien. If Kavanagh wins his primary, Herrod will likely attack Democrat Paula Pennypacker.
Herrod's key issues include destroying public education (she'll characterize it as "school choice") and furthering her Christian Dominionist agenda. That's where SB1062 came from back in January.
Today, the Arizona Republic ran an op-ed by Hamer bemoaning the fact that Dark Money has been stigmatized.
"Dark money" is the new political epithet, a scarlet letter attached to campaign efforts that express their First Amendment rights.
For all negative headlines and attention paid by the media, the good-government set and those who aren't benefiting from these efforts, the fact remains that the overwhelming majority of supposed "dark money" campaign efforts are operating well within the tax and campaign-finance law.
Hamer goes on to say,
We're consistently criticized by the media for failing to fully exert ourselves in order to impact Arizona's body politic and refocus legislators and elected officials on our state's highest priorities. Yet, when the Arizona Business Coalition or other similar entities take action using the legal channels available to us, the dark-money denunciations come out like clockwork.Poor baby. Now he's the victim.
Hamer then suggests Dark Money is morally acceptable because it's legal and that special interests have been at it for hundreds of years.
Here's the truth: For as long as we've had elections in this country, campaign groups have sought to use every possible mechanism within the law to maximize fundraising and minimize public exposure for donors.What he doesn't say is that if everything is peachy, and has been since the beginning of the country, why do those special interests put so much effort into buying influence in elections and with government officials? Could it be because the interests Hamer favors want something changed?
Well, the PEOPLE are now fighting back and the days of Dark Money are numbered.
We WILL Move to Amend and we will fight to ensure elected officials Represent.Us.
If Hamer really wanted to come clean, he'd shine a light on the political activities of his organization... like Gil Fulbright.