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Possible Horne challenger resigns as gaming director

Mark Brnovich (file)

Mark Brnovich (file)

Arizona Department of Gaming Director Mark Brnovich, who is considering a run for attorney general, resigned his position, clearing the way for a possible Republican primary challenge to embattled Attorney General Tom Horne.

In a resignation letter to Gov. Jan Brewer on Tuesday, Brnovich said his resignation would be effective Sept. 20. Brewer appointed him to the position in 2009.

“I want to thank you for allowing me to serve as the Director of the Department of Gaming the past four years,” Brnovich said. “It has truly been an honor and privilege to work for you in serving the people of Arizona.”

According to online records from the online domain registry GoDaddy, Brnovich reserved the website address www.mark4ag.com on Aug. 23.

Brnovich could not be reached for comment.

He has an extensive law enforcement resume that includes stints with the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office, U.S. Attorney’s Office and Arizona Attorney General’s Office. He has also worked as an attorney at the Goldwater Institute.

Horne has spent the last year and a half mired in controversy after a joint investigation by the FBI and Maricopa County Attorney’s Office alleged campaign law violations by the attorney general and a top aide.

Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk is investigating the allegations that Horne illegally coordinated with an independent expenditure committee run by Kathleen Winn in 2010 during his first campaign for attorney general. Horne is also facing a civil lawsuit in federal court from an employee who alleged he and another aide retaliated against her for bringing evidence of coordination to the FBI.

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