On August 10, briefs on both sides were filed simultaneously with the Arizona Supreme Court in Save Our Vote v Bennett, the case over whether the initiative for a top-two open primary should be on the November 2012 ballot. Reply briefs are due early next week.
Amicus curiae briefs on the side of the proponents were submitted by the Southern Arizona Leadership Council and the Committee for a Unified Independent Party (CUIP), also known as Independent Voting. This is the group based in New York city.
Amicus curiae briefs opposing the top-two initiative were: (1) the Goldwater Institute; (2) leaders of both houses of the legislature; (3) the Democratic Party of Maricopa County, Pima County, and the county Democratic chairs in Pinal County and Coconino County; (4) the Arizona Latino Republican Association.
The CUIP brief argues that a top-two primary system elects more moderates. In support of this idea, it mentions the California June 2012 primary in the 8th U.S. House district (California’s Mohave desert district). The brief says under top-two, a moderate Republican and a conservative Republican placed first and second, and that this will enable Democrats and independents in November to elect the moderate Republican. However, the brief has a footnote to a Daily Kos article that describes the candidates in the 8th district race. The only Republican characterized as a moderate Republican in the Daily Kos analysis is Ryan McEachron. However, McEachron placed eighth, polling only 3.9% of the vote. The top two vote-getters in the 8th district are Gregg Imus (who associates himself with the Tea Party) and Assemblyman Paul Cook, a very conservative Republican state legislator. Of course, an argument that top-two should remain on the ballot because it allegedly helps moderates win is not an argument that pertains to the issue in the case. The issue is whether the Arizona initiative violates the single-subject rule.