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Tobin measure last-ditch effort for new political maps (access required)

A proposal by House Speaker Andy Tobin may give Republicans one last chance to rid themselves of congressional and legislative maps they’ve fought so hard to eliminate.

The Paulden Republican wants a November ballot measure that would overhaul the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. The proposal would expand the IRC to 12 members, eliminate a panel that nominates commissioners, and impose state open meeting law on the commission.

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Political firestorm looms as lawmakers advance strict anti-labor measures (access required)

In what is shaping up as one of the biggest political fights this year, conservative lawmakers are pushing a slew of measures that would fundamentally weaken public-sector unions in Arizona.

Taken together, the anti-union bills that were approved this week by a legislative committee are more restrictive than what was enacted in Wisconsin, where political turmoil erupted after its governor proposed to curtail collective bargaining rights for most state and local public employees.

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Pearce eyes Senate comeback

Recalled former Sen. Russell Pearce is eyeing a return to the Capitol and recently filed paperwork with the Secretary of State’s Office that would set the stage for 2012 campaign.

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