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Where does the Citizens Clean Elections Commission get their Funding?

The voters of Arizona established the Citizens Clean Elections Fund, which is comprised from the following:


  • 10% surcharge on all civil penalties and criminal fines
  • Civil penalties paid by candidates.
  • $5 qualifying contributions collected from participating candidates.

I hear people say that this program is nothing more than “tax dollars for politicians.” Is this true?
No. The candidates who qualify for clean elections funding do not receive any money from the general fund.


Who is eligible for Clean Elections funding?

All state legislative candidates as well as all statewide office candidates are eligible for funding from Clean Elections. They must meet certain requirements, among them collecting a certain number of $5 qualifying contributions and agreeing not to accept contributions from PACs and corporations.

How does the Clean Elections Commission spend their funding?

The Commission distributes funds to participating candidates once in the primary election cycle and once in the general election cycle. The Commission is statutorily mandated to spend no more than 10% of its funding on administration/enforcement and 10% on voter education. The voter education plan includes sending a candidate statement pamphlet to every home in the State with a registered voter for both the primary and general elections, sponsoring legislative and statewide candidate debates as well as traveling around the State conducting participating candidate workshops.