Here’s the thing, folks. If you give fanatical Republicans too much power, they do completely crazy things with it because they are basically insane. Case in point: one Gov. Jan Brewer of Arizona.
Gov. Jan Brewer and the GOP-controlled state Senate on Tuesday touched off legal and political battles as they took the unprecedented step of removing the chairwoman of the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission.
On a 21-6 party line vote, the Senate gave the Republican governor the two-thirds majority vote she needed to oust Colleen Coyle Mathis, citing “gross misconduct” in her role at the helm of the independent panel. The commission is in the midst of drawing new political boundaries for next year’s legislative and congressional races. As the Senate voted in early evening, commission attorneys left one court and rushed to the state Supreme Court to try to block the Senate’s action. They were too late to get immediate relief, but said they will petition the court today to allow Mathis to remain as commission chairwoman.
“It’s my view that she is most certainly still the chairman,” said Paul Charlton, Mathis’ attorney.
However, Senate officials and Brewer’s office said Mathis’ eight-month tenure as chairwoman ended once the Senate endorsed the governor’s action.
The conflicting views will fuel a legal battle over the extent to which the five-member commission is independent.