Seeking a political comeback after his ouster from a top legislative post, Russell Pearce will try to return to the Arizona Senate this fall.
The longtime Mesa lawmaker, who authored the controversial immigration law Senate Bill 1070 and has since become a national spokesman for tough illegal-immigration enforcement, announced his plan to run in the new Legislative District 25 on Monday night before a roomful of "tea party" supporters.
Pearce lost his seat and the presidency of the Senate in November when Jerry Lewis beat him in a recall election. Recall supporters said they wanted a lawmaker who focused on the economy and education, not the controversy over immigration...
...Lewis isn't an issue. Boundaries drawn during redistricting put Lewis into LD 26, which covers west Mesa and parts of Tempe.
Sen. Rich Crandall, R-Mesa, is the incumbent in Pearce's new LD 25. Rumors have been rampant about whether Crandall will run and in which district.
Pearce and Crandall are not friendly. Crandall, considered to be a more moderate Republican, was among those who helped kill several immigration measures in 2011...
...More than a dozen GOP leaders, including Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, appeared with Pearce. They spoke not only of Pearce's leading role on SB 1070 but his work on gun rights and budget cuts.
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