In Arizona, the legislature wants to remove all limits to the expansion of vouchers. Despite the many voucher plans already enacted, 85% of students are still enrolled in public schools. This past summer, parents, teachers, and public spirited citizens collected over 100,000 signatures on petitions to halt the implementation of the new law until a referendum is held. The referendum is scheduled for the spring of 2018.

Voucher advocates are desperate to stop the referendum. They expect that vouchers will be rejected, as they have been in every state where a referendum on vouchers was conducted. Pro-voucher groups are funding lawyers who are trying to find a way to block the vote.

Meanwhile, groups funded by the infamous Koch brothers have launched an advertising campaign targeted at Hispanic voters called “the Libre Institute.”

Laurie Roberts of the Arizona Republic describes their efforts here:

“The Koch network is stepping up to protect its investment in Arizona.

“An out-of-state group called the LIBRE Institute on Thursday launched a “six-figure grassroots initiative to empower and educate families in Phoenix about the policies increasing their educational opportunities.”

“Translation: Charles and David Koch and their conservative/libertarian network of zillionaire donors are prepared to spend whatever it takes to ensure that Arizona voters can’t – or won’t – kill the expanded voucher program approved earlier this year by Gov. Doug Ducey and the Arizona Legislature.

“Koch involvement is nothing new

“Already, the Koch network and associated dark money groups have spent millions to get a governor and Legislature that would push for and pass universal vouchers.

“Already, the Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity is suing to try to knock Prop. 305 – the citizen referendum aimed at vetoing our leaders’ universal voucher law – off the 2018 ballot.

“Now comes the plan the Koch-funded LIBRE Institute to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars targeting Arizona Latino families with ads, mailers and phone calls about the wonders of educational choice. Given that we already have plenty of educational choice, I’m guessing the campaign is really about the state’s new universal voucher law – the one that’s on hold thanks to a true grassroots referendum effort by a citizen group called Save Our Schools Arizona.”

I have opened the link to Roberts’ article three times.

The first time I opened it, I encountered two video ads promoting vouchers.

The second time, the ads were for commercial products.

The third time, the voucher ads were back.

Ironic that a story criticizing the fake “Libre Institute” contains ads funded by the same organization.

Yet again, we will discover whether big money can cancel and control democracy.