2016 Arizona Republican primary

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Arizona Republican Presidential Primary Election Results by County, 2016.svg
Election results by county.
  Donald Trump
  Ted Cruz

The Arizona Republican Primary took place on March 22 in the U.S. state of Arizona as one of the Republican Party's primaries ahead of the 2016 presidential election. Despite a late challenge by Texas Senator Ted Cruz, Donald Trump won the primary and netted all 58 delegates in the winner-take-all contest. On the same day were held Democratic and Green primaries in Arizona, as well as Republican and Democratic caucuses in Utah and Idaho Democratic caucus, so the day was dubbed "Western Tuesday" by media.

Voter suppression controversy[edit]

Businessman Donald Trump at a campaign rally at Fountain Park in Fountain Hills on March 19, 2016.
Senator Ted Cruz at a campaign rally at Arizona Christian University in Phoenix on March 18, 2016.

There was controversy surrounding the Arizona primary elections of 2016, specifically having to do with the decrease in polling places in Maricopa County from 200 in 2012 to only 60 in 2016, despite the number of registered voters having increased from 300,000 in 2012 to 800,000 in 2016.[1][2] This decrease in polling places was most pronounced in minority neighborhoods, most notably Latino neighborhoods, with areas like Central Phoenix having only one polling place for 108,000 voters. There were also reports of voters who had been previously registered coming up as unregistered or registered as an independent, making them ineligible to vote in the closed primary.[1] Voters who did manage to vote had to stand in long lines to cast their ballots, some for as long as five hours.[3] Additionally, voters reported being required to vote with a provisional ballot.[4] In 2005, Arizona threw out 27,878 provisional ballots, counting only about 72.5% of the total provisional ballots reported.[5] Taking into account the effects of the Supreme Court's "gutting of the Voting Rights Act",[6] it's unknown what percentage of the provisional ballots were counted in 2016. This was the first election in the state of Arizona since the 2013 Supreme Court decision to strike down Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which would have previously required states with a history of voter discrimination, including Arizona, to receive Federal approval before implementing any changes to voting laws and practices.

Within a day after the election took place on March 22, a petition went viral on the White House petitions site asking the Department of Justice to investigate voter suppression and election fraud in Arizona.[7] The petition reached 100,000 signatures in 40 hours,[8] and as of June 5, 2016, nearly 220,000 people have signed the petition. The White House responded on May 20, 2016. In addition, Phoenix mayor Greg Stanton asked the Justice Department to launch an investigation into the allegations of voter suppression.[9]

The Department of Justice has since launched a federal investigation into the primary.[10]

Results[edit]

Arizona Republican primary, March 22, 2016
Candidate Votes Percentage Actual delegate count
Bound Unbound Total
America Symbol.svg Donald Trump 286,743 45.95% 58 0 58
Ted Cruz 172,294 27.61% 0 0 0
Marco Rubio (withdrawn) 72,304 11.59% 0 0 0
John Kasich 65,965 10.57% 0 0 0
Ben Carson (withdrawn) 14,940 2.39% 0 0 0
Jeb Bush (withdrawn) 4,393 0.70% 0 0 0
Rand Paul (withdrawn) 2,269 0.36% 0 0 0
Mike Huckabee (withdrawn) 1,300 0.21% 0 0 0
Carly Fiorina (withdrawn) 1,270 0.20% 0 0 0
Chris Christie (withdrawn) 988 0.16% 0 0 0
Rick Santorum (withdrawn) 523 0.08% 0 0 0
Lindsey Graham (withdrawn) 498 0.08% 0 0 0
George Pataki (withdrawn) 309 0.05% 0 0 0
Timothy Cook (withdrawn) 243 0.04% 0 0 0
Unprojected delegates: 0 0 0
Total: 624,039 100.00% 58 0 58
Source: The Green Papers

Analysis[edit]

Donald Trump won Arizona decisively, netting all 58 delegates and carrying all counties in the state but two. As The New York Times described, "Mr. Trump proved his appeal among immigration hard-liners, who make up a large bloc of Republicans in the border state."[11]

Trump won the populous cities of Phoenix in Maricopa County, and Tucson in Pima County. He enjoyed support from former Arizona Governor Jan Brewer and Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, both of whom hold a hard-line stance against immigration. As Eric Bradner of CNN described, "Their decision to side with Trump, and the size of his win, underscores the potency of Trump's build-a-wall plan with the Republican base."[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b CNN, Eugene Scott. "DOJ looking into voter suppression claims in Arizona". CNN. Retrieved 2016-06-05.
  2. ^ "Arizona primary: Maricopa County had one polling site for every 21,000 voters". azcentral. Retrieved 2016-06-05.
  3. ^ "Election Other – President Obama Job Approval". RealClearPolitics. Retrieved March 23, 2016.
  4. ^ Sabato, Larry J. (May 11, 2015). "Clinton's Real Opponent: Barack Obama". Politico. Retrieved March 25, 2016.
  5. ^ Beal, Tom (29 January 2005). "Counties inconsistent in provisional-vote rules". votersunite.org. Arizona Daily Star. Retrieved March 26, 2016.
  6. ^ "Voting Rights Act Section 4 Struck Down By Supreme Court".
  7. ^ "Petition to White House about Arizona 'voter suppression' hit goal in about 40 hours".
  8. ^ TEGNA. "Petition to White House about Arizona 'voter suppression' hit goal in about 40 hours". KPNX. Retrieved 2016-06-05.
  9. ^ Cohn, Nate (January 16, 2015). "What a Rise in Obama's Approval Rating Means for 2016". The New York Times. Retrieved March 25, 2016.
  10. ^ Lachman, Samantha; Reilly, Ryan J. (April 4, 2016). "The DOJ Is Investigating Arizona's Election Mess". The Huffington Post. Retrieved April 4, 2016.
  11. ^ Martin, Jonathan (2016-03-22). "Clinton and Trump Win Arizona; Cruz Picks Up Utah; Sanders Takes 2". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2016-10-23.
  12. ^ CNN, Eric Bradner. "5 takeaways from Western Tuesday". CNN. Retrieved 2016-10-23.