Group appealing fine for attacking former Mesa mayor Scott Smith

During his ill-fated primary election run for governor in 2014, former 
Mesa Mayor Scott Smith was attacked in unscrupulous campaign ads./Tribune file photo

By Howard Fischer | Capitol Media Services via East Valley Tribune

A group that spent $260,000 attacking former Mesa Mayor Scott Smith in the 2014 gubernatorial primary is trying again to escape paying a fine for violating state campaign finance laws.

Attorneys for the Legacy Foundation Action Fund contend that the Citizens Clean Elections Commission lacked the power to impose a $96,000 fine for the commercials targeting Smith during Gov. Doug Ducey’s first run for governor.

 They say there was no proof that the ad was done to advance the political fortunes of anyone else in the Republican gubernatorial primary.

Beyond that, the lawyers contend that the commission lacks the authority to enforce the campaign finance laws.

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