Clean Elections Polling

A recent poll of 500 likely 2012 Arizona voters shows strong support for the Citizens Clean Elections Act—with a majority supporting the current law with no description and almost three out of four supporting with a basic description.  Additionally, Arizona voters are strongly opposed to efforts to repeal—with almost two thirds of voters opposing a repeal and a majority saying they would be less likely to vote for a state legislative candidate who supported a repeal. (Download the memo.)

  • Voters in Arizona strongly support the Citizens Clean Elections Act, and even more so after they hear basic information about the law—with strong super majorities of support across party lines. 

    When read with no description (see below for question wording), Clean Elections are supported by 52% of Arizonans, with just 7% opposed and 42% undecided.  Importantly, self-identified independents support the Clean Elections law by a margin of 53%-9%, as do a majority of Democrats (64%-1%) and a plurality of Republicans (42%-15%). 

    After getting a short description (see below for question wording) support rises with 77% of Arizonans in favor, 14% opposed, and just 9% undecided.  Again, independents very strongly support Clean Elections with a description (79% favor, 12% oppose), as do Democrats (80%-7%) and Republicans (74%-19%).
  • Support for Clean Elections is more than just an issue preference for Arizona voters, it is a core value to them as shown by the intensity of their support. 

    On the Clean Elections with a description, a majority (57%) say they strongly favor, as well as a majority (54%) who strongly oppose a repeal.
  • The demand for reform becomes stronger when voters consider a gift ban. 

    Arizona voters are near unanimous in support of a law that would ban any candidate or public official from receiving any gifts from lobbyists.  Just under nine out of ten voters (68%) support with only 8% opposed and 6% undecided.  Again, support remains strong across party lines with 91% of Democrats in favor, 88% of independents in favor, and 81% of Republicans in favor.
  • The ballot referendum for repeal of Clean Elections is a non-starter with voters. 

    When asked about a possible repeal of Clean Elections (text below) almost two-thirds of Arizona voters (66%) oppose the repeal, with only 16% in favor and 19% undecided.  Opposition toward the repeal ranges from 59% to 79% across party lines.
  • Arizona voters, including independent voters, are ready to punish candidates who support a repeal of Clean Elections at the polls. 

    By a margin of 45% to 5%, independent voters would be less likely to support a candidate who favors repeal of Clean Elections.  Republicans (47% would be less likely to support such a candidate) and Democrats (64%) agree.

Clean Elections w/o description:
As you may know, there is currently a law in Arizona called the Citizens Clean Elections Act.  Would you say you favor or oppose this law, or are you undecided? [IF FAVOR/OPPOSE] And is that strongly or not so strongly? [IF UNDECIDED] Well, which way do you lean?

Clean Elections with description:
Here is a little more information about the Citizens Clean Elections Act in Arizona. Passed by a voter referendum in 1998, it allows candidates running for the legislature or statewide offices to receive limited public funding for their campaigns, paid for by voluntary donations and civil penalties and criminal fines, if they agree to take no campaign money from lobbyists, interest groups, or any other private source.  Now having heard this, would you say you favor or oppose this law, or are you undecided? [IF FAVOR/OPPOSE] And is that strongly or not so strongly? [IF UNDECIDED] Well, which way do you lean?

Repeal of Clean Elections
Now for a slightly different question.  Some members of the Arizona state legislature who oppose the Clean Elections Act in Arizona are trying to put a repeal of the law on the ballot in 2012. Do you favor or oppose repealing the Clean Elections Act, or are you undecided?  [IF RESPONDENT IS CONFUSED, USE THIS PROMPT] To be clear, favoring a repeal would end the Clean Elections Act in Arizona. Opposing repeal would keep the Clean Elections Act in place. [IF FAVOR/OPPOSE] And is that strongly or not so strongly? [IF UNDECIDED] Well, which way do you lean?