Arizona: State Leaders Adjourn With Handful of Pro-Voting Wins

Phoenix – Arizona’s 2024 legislative session adjourned with a handful of voting rights victories, despite the referral of some anti-democracy measures to this year’s ballot. Common Cause Arizona and partners were instrumental in blocking other dangerous ballot referrals from being sent to voters, helping protect Arizona’s democracy from partisan attacks ahead of another consequential election. 

“Our democracy saw small wins in the legislative session, despite some disheartening measures going to the ballot,” said Common Cause Arizona’s Program Director, Jenny Guzman. “The referral process should not be used to make voting harder for Arizonans. Though Arizonans will be facing a long ballot this fall, we’re gratified to have blocked the most damaging measures from going to the voters.”

This year’s pro-democracy legislative wins resulted in the blockage of several dangerous, anti-voting measures from heading to the ballot, which is already set to be record-length. Among the measures Common Cause Arizona advocated against were HCR2058, which would have implemented an additional citizens-only census in the state, and HCR2056, a conspiracy-based measure that would have added barriers for Arizonans’ as they tried to access the ballot and eliminated the very popular election day ballot drop off practice 

While Arizona’s elections were protected from several massive, anti-voting attacks, other dangerous ballot measures were forced through to voters among the chaos of  the budget process, including:

  • SCR1044 —makes judges lifetime appointments and eliminates the current practice of judicial retention
  • SCR1041 — makes it easier to strike down ballot measures before reachingvoters
  • HCR2060 — the “show me your papers” SB1070 2.0 law being sent to voters now as a referral, despite the catastrophic backlash the state faced back in 2010.

“We cannot allow bad actors to attack our democracy and our freedoms by bypassing the governor and overwhelming voters with needless ballot referrals,” added Guzman, who recently joined allies in warning voters about the dangers on this year’s ballot. “Referrals like SCR1044 are part of a larger effort to utilize the judicial branch as a tool in a political agenda. Arizona voters deserve the right to choose their representatives and enforce checks and balances. We must not allow partisan power grabs to separate the people from the power of their vote.”

The Arizona Legislature’s 2024 session concluded on Saturday, July 15. The final ballot with all referrals, both referred by the legislature and citizen initiatives, will be printed and sent to voters in August.