Today: Jul 14 , 2020

Governor Jan Brewer Seeks Clarity from Arizona Supreme Court

22 November 2011   Matthew Benson
Senate President-elect Pierce, Governor Brewer, Speaker Tobin

Governor, Legislature Seek Explanation for High Court Intervention

Update, Tuesday 12:30 - Congressman Paul Gosar has issued a statement on the AIRC situation: 

Statement by Congressman Paul Gosar in Response to Governor Brewer's 
Request for Supreme Court Reconsideration of IRC Decision

"I fully support the Governor's efforts to seek clarification from the court on its seemingly arbitrary order. I join in Speaker Tobin's sentiments as well that the Court has overstepped its Constitutional powers and has all but rewritten the law to remove the Governor and the State Senate.

What the Arizona Supreme Court did in this case was simply disregard the law as written and rewrite it. With no trial and no evidentiary hearing the court has reinstated the Chair of the Independent Redistricting Commission. The Chair was found by the Governor and the State Senate to have denied residents of Arizona the basic rights to fair districts and representation as afforded to them as a right of our Constitution.

On behalf of Arizona voters, particularly those in rural Arizona who will be most disenfranchised by this decision, I call upon the Court to explain its actions."

PHOENIX – Time is short, and the people of Arizona deserve answers.

Governor Jan Brewer and the Arizona State Senate today filed a pair of legal motions formally requesting that the Arizona Supreme Court reconsider last week’s ruling to reinstate Chairwoman Colleen Mathis to the Independent Redistricting Commission. Additionally, the Governor and State Senate have asked the Court to clarify its November 17 order regarding the removal of Chairwoman Mathis, and for the court to stay the order reinstating the IRC Chairwoman until further clarity is provided.

Statement from Governor Brewer

“It is untenable that the Court has blocked me from executing my Constitutional authority to remove a member of the IRC, but has provided neither explanation for its action nor a timetable for when that guidance will be granted. I maintain that my action was lawful to remove the IRC Chairwoman based on her misconduct and neglect of duty, and ask that the Court reconsider its order of reinstatement. At a minimum, the Chairwoman should be barred from resuming her duties until the Court has provided clarity regarding its cursory order.”

Statement from Senate President-elect Steve Pierce

"The Governor and the State Senate have clear constitutional authority to remove an IRC member. When the Court inserts itself into this process, it has an obligation to explain its actions clearly. On Thursday the Court not only disregarded the actions of the Governor, but also more than two-thirds of the State Senate. The Court owes the people of Arizona an explanation on their intervention, and Ms. Mathis must not return to the IRC until we get those answers.”

Statement from Speaker of the House Andy Tobin

"I fully support today's action. Last week's order from the Court has serious negative repercussions on the constitutional separation of powers. The Arizona Constitution clearly gives the authority to remove a commissioner to the Governor, with a concurring two-thirds vote of the State Senate. The Court has in effect substituted its judgment for that of the Governor and Senate. Therefore, I've directed my counsel to seek intervention in the special action for the purpose of joining the Governor and the Senate in seeking reconsideration of the order."