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Commerce refuses to disclose CEO finalists

The Arizona Commerce Authority thus far has not released its list of finalists for outgoing CEO Don Cardon’s job, but one source who’s familiar with the search said Arizona Chamber of Commerce President Glenn Hamer is in contention and has been interviewed for the position.

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Of course there’s already talk of a special session

The work of the 50th Legislature is officially completed, but rumors were circulating last week that some Republicans are – or will be – working on a referral to compete with the Open Government initiative, which seeks to overhaul the state’s elections system by allowing everybody to vote in an open primary with the top two winners, regardless of party, competing in a runoff.

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Flipping over the race card

Gallardo yesterday led the Latino charge against the two recent FAIR Trust lawsuits against the IRC’s maps. With an eye directed primarily at the legislative map, he, Lopez and Quezada teamed up with Mary Rose Wilcox and attorney Danny Ortega to denounce the lawsuits as a dishonest and racist Republican attempt to maintain control of the Legislature.

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Things looking up for Gould’s race on the river

Gould yesterday picked up the endorsement of the fiscally conservative Club for Growth, whose endorsement could provide an influx of needed cash into his race against Gosar and Babeu. Chris Chocola, the group’s president today gave Gould the ringing endorsement of “taxpayer superhero,” and Chocola didn’t mince words about Gould’s incumbent opponent: “Ron has stood up to the big spenders in Arizona time and time again and we believe he will do the same in Congress.

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…Every decision of any consequence

In their latest legal episode, the IRC will be defending itself from allegations that its legislative district plan is the result of a careful and deliberate conspiracy to fix the game for Democrats. On Friday, FAIR Trust attorney Michael Liburdi filed a federal lawsuit charging that the commission went through great lengths to pack GOP legislative districts to maximize Dem chances.

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It’s on: IRC faces two-front war over districts

The IRC is now facing two lawsuits aimed at obliterating the commission’s legislative and congressional lines. FAIR Trust attorney Mike Liburdi and Lisa Hauser were expected to file lawsuits in state and federal court today challenging the commission’s procedures, its results and raising the possibility of open meeting law violations.

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Time to call it a session, hit the campaign trail

Brewer seems to have avoided the ignominy of having a supermajority Legislature of the same party strike a deal with the Democrats to roll her on the budget, as word emerged late yesterday that her office and GOP leaders had arrived at the framework of a budget deal. Today, Republican lawmakers were briefed on the Ninth Floor’s latest proposal, and though details about the entire plan aren’t yet clear, one thing is known: The Legislature won the fight over FY14 and FY15 revenue estimates.

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Johnny Paycheck has nothing on Duane Belcher

After 20 years of work with the Board of Executive Clemency, Executive Director Duane Belcher was fired and shown the door on Monday – and not without the help of Capitol Police. Belcher was kicked out of the Ninth Floor after engaging in a heated conversation with Brewer deputy chief of staff and DOA Director Scott Smith. “I called him an a**hole,” Belcher told our reporter, adding that police were summoned because he wasn’t vacating the premises fast enough for Smith’s liking.

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Pearce: S1070 with or without border security

Pearce today stood firm and unapologetic as local and national critics tore into S1070 before a national audience. He was set to speak before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security, but he wound up addressing only NY Sen. Charles Schumer and Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin after the panel’s other members were no-shows.

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