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Bill would make it more difficult to recall lawmakers (access required)

Vexed by his defeat in a special election last year, allies of former Sen. Russell Pearce are pushing for legislation that would make it more difficult to recall sitting lawmakers.

Under a proposal championed by Sen. Steve Smith, R-Maricopa, party-mates who are willing to challenge an officeholder in a recall must do it in a primary election first.

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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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Two anti-illegal immigration measures are back (access required)

Undeterred by major setbacks last year, a freshman legislator is once again pushing immigration bills that could lead to another showdown over how best to confront the issue.

Sen. Steve Smith, a Maricopa Republican, is proposing laws that would require school districts to count the number of students who are in the country illegally and to require hospitals to report patients who cannot prove their lawful status.

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Push for transparency focuses on campaign spending, gift giving (access required)

In the wake of two of Arizona’s biggest political shake-ups of last year, lawmakers are hoping a little sunshine will help clean up the mess.

Shadowy groups involved in the recall of then-Senate President Russell Pearce brought to light some of the flaws in the current financial disclosure requirements. Meanwhile, the Fiesta Bowl scandal brought to light ethical questions about what should be considered a gift from a lobbyist.

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