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State lawmakers gather for special session regarding Independent Redistricting Commission

By Howard Fischer

Phoenix, AZ – State lawmakers are gathering at the Capitol this afternoon for a special session. But Arizona Public Radio's Howard Fischer reports there has been a holdup.

The plan is to have the Senate debate and vote on what is expected to be a formal request by Gov. Jan Brewer to oust one or more members of the Independent Redistricting Commission. Brewer has alleged they have committed acts of gross misconduct both in how they chose a consultant and in how they performed their constitutional duties of drawing lines for the state's 30 congressional and nine legislative districts. And most Republicans appear to be ready to go along. But the session which was supposed to start at 1 this afternoon got delayed amid various legal and political questions. Only thing is, the governor is nowhere in sight. In fact, she is in New York City doing interviews about her new book, Scorpions for Breakfast. That angered Senate Minority Leader David Schapira.

(Our governor's not here. She's out, doing her own personal business, promoting her book. And I think it's pretty ridiculous for her to be publicly accusing commissioners of gross misconduct when she's not even here to lead our state.)

Gubernatorial press aide Matthew Benson sidestepped repeated questions about why Brewer would choose to be gone for what would be an unprecedented constitutional action of removing a sitting redistricting commissioner. On the Senate floor, for Arizona Public Radio, this is Howard Fischer.