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GOP-led Senate votes to oust redistricting chairwoman

In an unprecedented move that cast shadows of uncertainty over the state’s decennial remapping process, the Senate voted to remove Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission Chairwoman Colleen Mathis.

The Senate voted to oust Mathis on a party line 21-6 vote – three Democrats were absent – for “neglect of duty” and “gross misconduct in office.” The charges stemmed from Republican allegations that Mathis, the independent chair of the panel, ignored constitutional criteria for drawing congressional and legislative districts and violated open meeting laws during the selection of a mapping consultant.

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Mesa’s Watergate: Cortes’ campaign conspirators should come clean

The Arizona Constitution, Article 7 section 12, charges the Legislature with the duty to “maintain the purity of elections.” Arizona case law has held that attempting to place a “diversionary candidate” on the ballot is illegal. A “diversionary candidate” is one who is in the race solely to divert votes from a particular candidate so as to give an advantage to another candidate. The recent lawsuit to have Olivia Cortes removed from the race was filed to honor the rule of law.

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