Russell Pearce Wants To Rig Redistricting (Surprise, Surprise)

Pearce wants to meddle with the IRC for his own selfish political ends

Arizona's Independent Redistricting Commission won't be independent if state Senate President-elect Russell Pearce has anything to do with it.

Already, Pearce, with the assistance of state House Speaker Kirk Adams, has effectively bulldozed two of the Republican nominees for the IRC off the list created by the Commission on Appellate Court Appointments, which makes the nominations.

GOPers Steve Sossaman and Mark Schnepf have taken a powder, but the nominee Pearce and Adams are really after, Independent Paul Bender, professor and dean emeritus of ASU's law school, has so far refused to, um, bend to Pearce's will.

As many of you likely know, according to the Arizona Constitution, Democratic legislative leaders get to pick two Dems from the list of nominees, Pearce and Adams get to pick two Republicans, and the four persons so chosen pick an Independent to chair the IRC. Bender is one of five Indy nominees, and there's no guarantee he would be the choice of the four partisans.

What's Pearce's problem with Bender? Could it be that Pearce is ticked that Bender has been critical of Arizona's breathing-while-brown law SB 1070 as well as Pearce's efforts to curtail the birthright citizenship provision of the Fourteenth Amendment?

You see, Bender has been very outspoken on both of these issues. In July, Bender told the Arizona Republic that immigration law was the purview of the federal government, and that, as a result, SB 1070 would likely not withstand the challenge of a federal lawsuit.

In June, he told the Rep that the language of the 14th Amendment was "very clear," and that a state legislative attempt to challenge it would be unconstitutional.

"I understand why legislators are doing this," Bender said. "And I understand why it would seem counterintuitive to people that someone could come here illegally, have a child here, and that child becomes a full-fledged citizen. But that is what the Constitution has provided since the 14th Amendment was passed."

Pearce and Adams claim Bender is unqualified to be a nominee for an unpaid post on the IRC because he's a tribal judge. Bender, the constitutional expert, disagrees. Indeed, the Arizona Constitution does not disqualify nominees on the grounds of holding such a position for an Indian tribe.

Indian tribes are not mentioned in the language of that section of the Arizona Constitution. But they are mentioned in another, Article 20, Section 4, which acknowledges that tribal lands are "subject to the disposition and under the absolute jurisdiction and control of the Congress of the United States,"

Thus, Pearce's real reasons for wanting to disqualify Bender are as plain as the squint in the Senator's beady eyes. Adams is just along for the ride, to give Pearce cover.

The pair are also throwing out other objections to the list of Republican nominees. Almost all come from Maricopa County, they complain. And they allege religious discrimination against one potential nominee who didn't make the cut.

Don't buy it. The Commission on Appellate Court Appointments had to work with the pool of folks who put their names in the pot. And the Commission had to be sure that those applying could work with others of differing opinions and were committed to the thousands of unpaid hours they would have to kick in.

(Along these lines, the Arizona Constitution states that, members of the IRC must be "committed to applying the provisions of this section in an honest, independent and impartial fashion and to upholding public confidence in the integrity of the redistricting process.")

Wednesday morning, the Commission has a public meeting scheduled to discuss the matter. It remains to be seen if they will allow themselves to be bullied by Pearce and his weak-kneed enabler Adams.

What's at stake is the competitiveness of Arizona's legislative and Congressional races. And, more importantly for Pearce, who sees himself in Congress someday, the new legislative district that the IRC will have to carve out as a result of the 2010 Census.

Pearce wants a Congressional district he can win in. So expect the bullying to continue. One wonders what exactly Pearce has to do to overreach and draw the outrage of the public at large. He would appear to have overreached already.

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Fuck You Rustyyyy
Fuck You Rustyyyy

Let's name a street after Pearce... after we bury his racist ass in the asphalt.

Ronjosie
Ronjosie

BOO HOO!! If Pearce were a Democrat you would be praising his brilliant judgment. Put your keyboard away and take a vacation.

Bill
Bill

Good news, Stephen. the Appellate Appointments Commission gave the figurative middle finger to Pearce and Adams by refusing to consider removing bender, and refusing to accept the resignations of Sossaman and Schnepf. And before anyone starts screaming "liberal conspiracy," that group is made up of 8 republicans, 4 Dems, and 2 independents. At last someone has the balls to stand up to these petty tyrants. Get ready for a Pearce tantrum where he accuses the commission members of being part of the "open border crowd".

Bill Stoller and Gerri Cocozza
Bill Stoller and Gerri Cocozza

This came in from E-mail TheClassGlobal@gmail.com, a known mass distributer for Stoller and Associates' press releases. No name on it.

"We're glad to see Stephen Lemons continuing the justified attacks on Pearce. This racist Mesa redneck Nazi sold us out in our efforts to go after drophouse owners and he's selling out America now by not challenging Obama on many fronts. A Stoller/Cocozza contact says that Pearce is getting a cut of some vary large amount of money that an Ambassador was commissioned to pay taxes on and give to the U.S. Treasury.

Money in the trillions they say, and they're using the term "WantaGate," because the Ambassador's name is Wanta. He was an honest guy who had the money wire-transferred to a Bank of America in Virginia in 2005 or so. Now all the politicians on both sides are cutting up the take. Unbelievable if it's true.

We know Pearce has Joe's deputies and those bikers watching Stephen's blogs, so make sure you get this right in their faces. Talked to Anna Gaines and even she's starting to turn on Pearce. Says she can't trust him anymore."

Man, if Pearce is so hated he's losing Anna Gaines, he's really screwing up these days.

Paid advetisement.

Check out www.BadPhoenixCops.blogspot.co... for the latest on Phoenix police and government corruption.

That's www.BadPhoenixCops.com - where the TRUTH hurts!

LTK, on the blogs worldwide, online and on time.

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

pearce, in my opinion, is a very dangerous man who will use and abuse his position for his personal gain, as he seems to have demonstrated over the many years. The state Republican party needs to be ready to can this guy and remove him from office or at the very censure his every move to gain more power and to further dirty the legislative gene pool with his choice of concubines. Let there be no mistake, anything he does, or is behind, is only for the benefit of himself, and doesn't have a damn thing to do with what is good for Arizona.

I know some very good people who are members of the LDS. pearce is not among them.

Bender WILL NOT give in to pearce, which tells me I like the guy and don't even know him.

Concerned Citizen
Concerned Citizen

Arizona needs Paul Bender. The fact that Pearce doesn't want him makes him the best choice. Wake up Arizona!!

Steve Muratore
Steve Muratore

http://www.tucsonweekly.com/Th...

apparently, Jim Nintzel has gotten to the core of the matter, finding out that Gleason is apparently a ringer for Jesse Kelly in Tucson, the Teabagger, wingnut that won the GOP primary in CD 8 this year but lost to Giffords in the general election.

Coz
Coz

Pearce is single handily going to destroy what little good there's left in Arizona. It's just a matter of time.

Gerry_C
Gerry_C

He has a good start of doing just that Coz. Disgusting.

WhoKnows
WhoKnows

Actually, I'm betting by Feb, his own party is sick enough of his stunts that they shut him down. People are looking for fixes to the AZ Budget and jobs, and the more this clown grandstands without addressing the real problems, even his supports will begin to feel the heat from the public.

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

I will respectfully disagree. I don't think the Az Republican Party has the needed members with intelligence or ethics to care enough to shut him down. Randy Pullen, singly, is probably most responsible for the loss of members of the Republican party, myself included, who have moved here from out of Arizona. You will immediately recognize Mr. Pullen walking down the street. He's the one who leans so far to the right that his ear rubs the sidewalk and he can't wear a hat because it continues to fall off. He even has a sidecar for his road bike so it won't tip over.

Coz
Coz

One would hope so, but those that support this racist corrupt POS have got the intelligence of a rock so I wouldn't expect much from them.

Steve Muratore
Steve Muratore

I would be surprised if the Appointments Commission removes Bender from the list tomorrow. However, because two of the Maricopa County republicans have withdrawn, that may pave the way for adding a name or two to the GOP side of the IRC list from outside of Maricopa County. Given the apparent zeal with which Pearce, Adams and the Center for Arizona Policy have complained about the exclusion of Christopher Gleason, one might expect Gleason to be given a second shot at inclusion. However, given that ALL but two letters -- from the 150+ pages of written comments from citizens submitted to the Appointments Commission since the list was first finalized on December 8 -- express deep concern and outrage over the interference in the process by Pearce and Adams, Gleason is still not a shoe in.

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