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IRConspiracy? (access required)

IRC testimony may shed light on unanswered questions, accusations


Win or lose, a pair of lawsuits seeking to overturn maps drawn by the state’s redistricting commission may shed new light on accusations and unanswered questions that have dogged the panel for much of the past year.

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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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…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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FAIR game? How GOP politicians are trying to secretly influence the IRC

How GOP politicians are trying to secretly influence the IRC

A group of high-profile attorneys working for a group called FAIR Trust say they want to help the state's redistricting commission adhere to the legal requirements that govern the high-stakes, once-in-a-decade political remapping process, and the group’s name suggests it is interested in fairness.

But what FAIR Trust’s attorneys refuse to say is that they’re actually representing a group of incumbent Republicans from Arizona’s congressional delegation and the state Legislature.

The group's representatives have gone out of their way to hide who is involved and who is funding their pricey legal efforts. And so far the group has done a good job keeping that information away from the public.

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Secretary of State: Lobbying statutes don’t apply to IRC, but they should (access required)

The Secretary of State’s office on Wednesday dismissed a complaint alleging that the state’s redistricting commission was being illegally lobbied by a group with ties to Republican politicians.

The state’s elections officials threw the complaint out because they said Arizona’s lobbying laws don’t apply to the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. But in their dismissal letter, those same elections officials said they believe the laws should be changed so they do apply.

And that could happen as early as next year, said Amy Bjelland, the Secretary of State’s election director.

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