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Brewer pushing major presidential role for Grand Canyon State (access required)

In a state that has so often been an afterthought in presidential campaigns, Gov. Jan Brewer wants Arizona to have a role befitting its newfound national prominence in 2012.

Arizona has dominated the national discourse on illegal immigration and border security for the past two years, and it's one of the epicenters of the nationwide housing crisis.

Now Brewer wants to parlay that influence into a louder voice for Arizona in choosing the Republican Party’s nominee to face President Barack Obama.

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In early interview, Cortes planned to court Hispanic voters (access required)

Critics of Senate President Russell Pearce have labeled Olivia Cortes a "stealth" candidate who is aiming to divide his opposition. This month, media reports quoted a circulator Cortes supposedly hired as admitting that she is running to dilute the vote against Pearce, the state's foremost immigration hawk.

And even though she has denied that the Pearce camp had asked her to run, an early interview with the candidate reveals she planned to court Hispanic voters in the upcoming Mesa recall election.

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Key absence could quash Bundgaard ethics hearing (access required)

A full-blown investigation of Sen. Scott Bundgaard’s infamous freeway fight seemed certain to take place when an ethics complaint was filed against him last month.

But one member of the ethics panel won’t be around when the committee meets today to decide whether to proceed with an inquiry. And that missing vote could neutralize efforts to investigate Bundgaard.

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