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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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Wild West moments of 2012 (access required)

Wild West moments of 2012 <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

While the mood at the state Capitol this past year might be best described as riotous, 2012 — the Chinese Year of the Dragon — was marked with fewer gaffes, catfights and over-the-top name calling among Arizona’s political elite.

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Pearce says District 25 dispute is over cheating (access required)

Pearce says District 25 dispute is over cheating <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Former Senate President Russell Pearce said the dispute over organizational elections in Legislative District 25 is over cheating, not a power struggle between political factions as it has been portrayed in a federal lawsuit.

Pearce, a precinct committeeman in the heavily conservative Mesa district, said the lawsuit, filed Dec. 24 in U.S. District Court in Phoenix, is an attempt to cover up cheating and fraud that was committed by a few people.

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Prop 114 overwhelmingly approved (access required)

Prop 114 overwhelmingly approved <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Voters overwhelmingly favored approving a constitutional amendment barring criminals from suing their victims. The Crime Victims Protection Act has a lead of 80 percent to 20 percent with 90 percent of precincts counted.

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