Arizona Eagletarian

Arizona Eagletarian

Friday, November 18, 2011

Redistricting -- next steps in high stakes game of chicken UPDATED 3 pm MST

Scuttlebutt going around the State Capitol now says that Brewer will likely call a special session of the legislature next week to make another attempt to remove Colleen Mathis. Some say Monday, some say Tuesday. Since Wednesday is the day before Thanksgiving, in general it's unlikely she will call it then.

Those who have spoken with reporters say the strategy will be, since the Supreme Court order centers on the defectiveness of the governor's removal letter, to get more specific with those charges. However, until the Court issues an opinion spelling out the reasoning behind the ruling, they will only be taking stabs in the dark. And that could take weeks.

Word from members of the Appellate Courts Commission on Appointments is that Chief Justice Rebecca Berch, who chairs that panel, sent an email this morning to let them know no decision has yet been made about whether to hold Tuesday's meeting to review applications submitted by the hopeful (?) IRC candidates. NOTE: See 3pm update below. The two meetings, Nov 22 and 29 have been cancelled.

In the meantime, Redistricting Commission and counsel met today to discuss strategies for moving forward with modifications to the draft maps. Commissioners have a lot of public input, submitted over the course of the last month, to consider. The Commission is unlikely to begin holding mapping meetings before Monday, Nov 28.



Moments ago, I received the following from the Arizona Supreme Court.

“In light of the November 17 Supreme Court Order reinstating Colleen Mathis as Chair of the Independent Redistricting Commission (IRC), there is no longer a vacancy on the IRC.   The meetings of the Commission on Appellate Court Appointments now scheduled for Tuesday, November 22, and Monday, November 28, to fill the previously existing vacancy are therefore cancelled.”
 Statement from Chief Justice Rebecca White Berch,
Chair of the Commission on Appellate Court Appointments
(emphasis added)



AP writer Paul Davenport reports:

Brewer spokesman Matthew Benson previously declined to describe the options under consideration, but he said the court's order "potentially" left open the possibility of trying to remove Mathis again with more detailed charges and findings in the removal order.
Senate President-elect Steve Pierce, R-Prescott, said lawyers were working on a new removal letter while reviewing legal issues.
"I believe it can be fixed with a better letter," he said, adding that a course hasn't been decided. "It's totally up to the governor," he said.
Other Republican senators said they were still digesting the court action but mentioned the try-again option and others. Those included holding a special election early next year to ask voters to return redistricting to the Legislature, and allowing the commission to finish its work but then sue to challenge its final maps. 


  1. Anything and everything to subvert the will of the voters all in the name of a social conservative and GOP super majority. What a bunch of assholes! If only they worked this hard to subvert the will of the voters in regards to the anti-gay marriage amendment.

  2. Hey Phoenix Justice, the only "swear" word I condone on the Arizona Eagletarian is "bullshit." Please honor that editorial policy. ;)

  3. I have a sneaking suspicion that Jan and the Senate GOP are going to continue to spin ever more elaborate bullshit in the hopes that the public won't care and the Supreme Court will eventually accept a better show trial. Given that they haven't any actual reason to remove Mathis, they are cruising for a bruising by playing Constitutional chicken with the Court.