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Escaping his ‘comfort zone:’ How an experience in Rio and a Vince Lombardi quote led Justin Pierce to a House seat (access required)

Justin Pierce remembers when the calls started coming in.

Former House Speaker Kirk Adams had officially announced his resignation and the precinct committeemen for Legislative District 19 were beginning their search for a replacement. Pierce, a labor attorney, son of Arizona Corporation commissioner and former state lawmaker Gary Pierce, a grassroots activist and generally affable guy, was on their list of people they’d like to see in the House seat.

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Fit to be tied: Republican lawmakers say Prop. 105 is too restrictive

The chorus of lawmakers calling for an overhaul of the Voter Protection Act quieted to a low murmur in 2011, but supporters say the dormant issue will be back on the Legislature’s agenda next year.

Several Republican legislators said they will revive their plans to change Proposition 105, the 1998 ballot measure that strictly limits the Legislature’s ability to tamper with voter-approved measures.

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Lawsuit aims to block AHCCCS cuts (access required)

Attorney Tim Hogan on Monday filed a request for a special action with Arizona Supreme Court aimed at blocking cuts to the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, a move that could unbalance the fiscal year 2012 budget by hundreds of millions of dollars.

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UpClose with David Schapira: Found some success at blocking legislation with ‘watchdog’ approach

The Senate minority announced an audacious goal this year — to put the spotlight on Republicans and their legislation. That task fell to a young father to articulate his party’s positions in a year when Republicans, who are control both chambers, don’t even need a single Democratic vote to pass emergency legislation.

The immediate challenge for Senate Minority Leader David Schapira, a Tempe Democrat, and his caucus was to avoid being relegated to irrelevance.

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