by Jim Nintzel
Arizona Republic columnist Rob Robb notes something very disturbing about Prop 111, which would create a new office of lieutenant governor:
Under Proposition 111, the office of secretary of state is abolished. Its duties are transferred to a lieutenant governor.
Candidates for governor and lieutenant governor run separately in the primaries. But the successful nominees of each party would then run as a team in the general election. The candidate getting the most votes for governor automatically gets his party's nominee as lieutenant governor.
But what about an independent who wants to be lieutenant governor? Sorry, out of luck. Only candidates who are part of a political party with a candidate for governor are eligible.
And what about an independent who wants to be governor? No luck for you either.
Proposition 111 says that “each nominee for the office of governor shall run on a ticket as a joint candidate in the general election with the nominee for the office of lieutenant governor from the same political party as the nominee for governor.” So, in addition to establishing the office of lieutenant governor, Proposition 111 sets up a new constitutional requirement to be a general election candidate for governor that, by definition, independents cannot fulfill.
In an era of increasing disenchantment with partisan politics, why would anyone seriously consider a governmental reform that further entrenches political parties, making them the only route to holding elected office?
Read the whole thing here.
Despite all the disgust voters now have with both political parties, it's not like they embrace independent candidates. At the end of the day, they still end up voting for the D or the R. (Although former Democrat Ted Downing is putting that to the test in his state Senate run in Legislative District 28 this year.)
Nonetheless, do we really want to stop from being able to run for office? This is sloppy, sloppy legislation.