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Ariz. high court to explain redistricting ruling

Supreme Court justices Robert Brutinel, Scott Bales, Andrew Hurwitz, John Pelander and Michael Ryan. (Photo by Evan Wyloge/Arizona Capitol Times)

The Arizona Supreme Court is scheduled to issue a long-awaited opinion today explaining why it overturned Gov. Jan Brewer’s removal of the head of the state’s redistricting commission.

The high court last November reinstated Colleen Mathis as chair of the Independent Redistricting Commission, a development that capped weeks of political and legal controversy.

That was after Brewer got permission from the Arizona Senate to invoke a constitutional provision allowing removal of commissioners for gross misconduct or neglect of duty.

Brewer had said the commission under Mathis didn’t comply with constitutional processes and criteria for drawing new congressional and legislative district maps.

Mathis denied that, and the Supreme Court ruled that Brewer’s removal letter to Mathis didn’t demonstrate constitutional grounds.

The commission approved new legislative and congressional districts in January.

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