PHOENIX – Gov. Doug Ducey, who surfed a wave of anonymous dark money into office in November, does not want the public to know who is coming up to the ninth floor to meet with him.
Earlier this week, the visitor’s log that had been on the 8th floor of the Executive Tower through multiple governors quietly disappeared. In the Capitol Times Yellowsheet, where the story broke, a Ducey spokesman defended the lack of transparency. Ducey’s flack said ditching the visitors log would make the office “more efficient” because the logs weren’t always accurate.
Of course the logs will be replaced with nothing, and there’s no other way for media to track visitors so, yeah, that’s technically more efficient. Points for the clever spin.
Attorney Dan Barr, who works with the First Amendment Coalition and other Arizona media clients, said it looks especially bad for Ducey to pull down the shades on the public after he benefited so heavily from anonymous dark money groups to get elected.
“Here’s a guy who was successfully propelled into office by outside dark money,” Barr said. “We don’t know who donated to these groups or their real agenda, and now we don’t know who he’s meeting with. It’s important to know who has access to the Governor’s office. Imagine the uproar if the White House stopped keeping logs about who has access to the West Wing.”
The “efficiency” bug seems to be catching around 1700 W. Washington. On Tuesday House Speaker David Gowan pushed through a controversial rule change to selectively shut the public and media out of caucus meetings.
As they say, sunlight is the best disinfectant. To encourage Gov. Ducey to be transparent and let the public know who has access to his office, please call him at 602.542.4331.