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Ron Paul to headline state GOP meeting

At least one presidential candidate will be on hand for the Arizona Republican Party’s straw poll.

Libertarian-leaning, GOP orthodoxy-bashing U.S. Rep. Ron Paul will be a guest speaker at the state party’s meeting on Jan. 28, where he’ll look for a straw poll win in anticipation of Arizona’s presidential preference primary in late February.

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Lawmakers, Brewer looking past rocky 2011 (access required)

The road from the end of the last legislative session to the beginning of the new one was full of potholes for Gov. Jan Brewer and the Legislature.

Both sides say there’s nothing unusual about the two branches butting heads, and say they’ve moved past the disagreements of 2011. But there was no shortage of feuds between Brewer and the Legislature.

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Continuing support for Russell Pearce

Russell Pearce may have been ousted by the voters in his legislative district in last year’s historic recall election, but proof of his enduring popularity among Republican activists will be on full display later this month, as the former Senate president is set to be elected to second-in-command of the Arizona Republican Party. When voters at the state GOP’s annual meeting on Jan. 28 elect a host of new officers, Pearce’s name will be on the ballot as a candidate for first vice-chairman of the party, and his victory – despite the presence of an opponent – is as assured as is tomorrow’s sunrise.

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Q&A with Gov. Jan Brewer (access required)

Gov. Jan Brewer has never had a legislative session like this.

After three years of fiscal crises and emergency budget fixes, Brewer went into the 2012 legislative session with a projected surplus. The biggest budget problem Brewer faces now is what to do with as much as $1.5 billion in extra revenue.

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Q&A with House Minority Leader Chad Campbell (access required)

It hasn’t been a banner past couple years for the Democrats. Faced with a Republican supermajority, their power at the Legislature has been limited.

Assessing this year’s session, House Minority Leader Chad Campbell has a similarly dim outlook. Democrats are still outnumbered two-to-one, and a looming election may mean lawmakers focus on more ideological issues. But there are some promising signs: new leadership in the House and Senate, plus some unexpected money for the state.

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