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The familiar conspiracy

Before this morning’s (March 25) federal court trial, the Republican story has been that Dem commissioners and the IRC’s independent chairwoman worked together to thwart the desires of GOP commissioners, all the while advancing map proposals pushed by Dems. But Miranda’s name was not connected to that theory.

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Who’s hot, who’s not: A year of ups and downs for Arizona politicos (access required)

Who’s hot, who’s not: A year of ups and downs for Arizona politicos <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

As 2012 comes to a close, some Arizona politicos have reached new heights of prominence and power. Others saw once-promising careers hit the wall.

Jeff Flake and Kyrsten Sinema gained influence and stature in the nation’s capital, while Andy Biggs reached the pinnacle of power in the Arizona Senate.

Meanwhile, former Senate President Russell Pearce and his successor, Sen. Steve Pierce, fell from grace, while a slew of Republican candidates once again failed in their bids to reach the halls of Congress.

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Will scandals that forced 4 lawmakers from office influence voters? (access required)

Not since the AzScam scandal in 1991 have so many Arizona lawmakers left office amid criminal allegations in a single year.

The current scandals could cast a cloud over the state’s general election. Lawmakers who leave in disgrace tend to discourage cynical voters from going to the polls, pollsters and players from the AzScam bribery scandal said.

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Sine die: Conservative agenda dominates session (access required)

Lawmakers wrapped up their work at 8:25 p.m. on May 3 after nearly four months in session, having stashed away money for anticipated rainy days ahead, approved a sweeping measure that allows state workers to be more easily fired and fought on the unending battlefronts of abortion, taxation and border security.

And like the year before, lawmakers with conservative leanings shaped the agenda at the Capitol.

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The scam

Yesterday, Miranda pleaded guilty in federal court to charges of wire fraud and attempted tax evasion for what federal prosecutors say was a three-year plot to rip off the nonprofit Centro Adelante Campesino.

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