PHOENIX — State lawmakers are moving to give themselves and other candidates the right to collect more money — a lot of it — from individuals and political action committees, even as they ask voters to effectively kill the option of public financing.
One measure approved Thursday by the House Judiciary Committee would statutorily boost the limits to $2,000 from any individual source. The current cap is $440.
But the increase in HB 2593 would be even more significant.
It would for the first time ever create separate limits for the primary and general elections. So that actually lets candidates take up to $4,000 every election from anyone.
Potentially more significant, the legislation would allow any one person or PAC to wield huge influence statewide. That's because HB 2593 would eliminate existing limits on the total each could contribute every year to all candidates in all statewide and local races.
That cap is now $5,610.
Separately, the committee also voted to put a measure on the 2014 ballot to defund the Citizens Clean Elections Commission. Rep. Paul Boyer, R-Phoenix, said it's time to ask voters to revisit their 1998 approval of the system that allows candidates who do not take private money to get set amounts of public funding.
Read more of this story in Friday's Star.