|Standing up for campaign finance transparency in city elections, the Phoenix City Council voted to commence research on drafting an ordinance to bring light to unaccountable money spent in city elections (aka – dark or dirty money). Since the Citizens United decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, elections at all levels of government have been swamped by billions of dollars of untraceable spending by those not courageous enough to put their name by their contributions. In a 6-3 vote, the city council began the process of standing up to dark money and restoring accountability to campaign spending.
“Current law allows wealthy individuals, corporations and interest groups to hide funding details from the public. I think that’s wrong—groups that want to spend money to influence our city elections should have to report where their money’s coming from and who’s behind them,” said Phoenix City Councilwoman Kate Gallego.
Gallego led the charge to bring this issue before the council for today’s vote. Gallego added, “Voters deserve to know the facts—and they can make up their own minds about whether they agree with the financial backers of these groups funneling unaccountable money into our elections.”
Phoenix City Councilwoman, Debra Stark, who also voted in favor of the measure said, “This will be a positive move as it will provide additional disclosure and information to the voters of Phoenix.”
The Phoenix City Clerk Department and Law Department will commence research on ordinance language and necessary charter changes and will return to a future meeting of a council subcommittee with options for the city council to consider.
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