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Pro-Prop 121 leader: We’re optimistic, realistic

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(Cronkite News Video by Sean Peick)

About 30 supporters of Proposition 121 have gathered at Tom’s Tavern in downtown Phoenix to watch results.

Former Phoenix Mayor Paul Johnson, a leader of the effort to create open primaries in Arizona, said supporters are upbeat but realistic given the amount of money contributed against the proposition of late.

“We are optimistic, but we recognize what’s happened in the last couple weeks,” Johnson said.

He’s referring to money from Americans for Responsible Leadership, an obscure Phoenix-based nonprofit that by law doesn’t have to disclose the sources of money it’s given. In all, the group has contributed at least $600,000 to the campaign against Proposition 121.

The measure would replace the current partisan primary system for state and federal offices with one primary advancing the top vote-getters regardless of party.