Citizens in Mesa's very conservative District 18 elected Russell Pearce six straight times. He was virtually untouchable, and when the nation pivoted to the right in 2010, Arizona went over the edge. Voters elected "Headless Bodies" Jan Brewer as governor, they gave her a veto-proof House and Senate, wingnuts Tom Horne and Ken Bennett were elected Attorney General and Secretary of State, and then legislators installed Russell Pearce, chief architect of SB 1070, as President of the Senate. Talk about a mandate!
The media dubbed Pearce "the most powerful politician in Arizona." That was one year ago. Tonight Russell Pearce can't say he's never lost an election.
Jerry Lewis, a political neophyte who was outspent greatly in the historic recall of Senate President Russell Pearce, sailed to victory tonight as the vast majority of votes have been counted in the west Mesa special election. Arizona Capitol Times
Why did voters turn so quickly? It didn't take long for the honeymoon between Pearce and the public to sour, after he tried to install himself as co-leader of the police state he and Sheriff Joe Arpaio were building.
Pearce drew up a blacklist that prohibited human rights advocates from entering the legislative chambers. He banned the public from the Senate's press conferences. He seemed not to give a damn when his policies, including SB 1070, pushed Arizona's economy into the shitter, saying it's a "myth" that the state's image was damaged! He ignored the public's will and went after education and healthcare with a vengeance, even kicking 100 people off a life-saving organ transplant list. He said they would "die anyway." Eh. At the same time they were gutting schools and healthcare, Pearce and the other GOP greed-heads passed huge corporate tax breaks.
Believing he had a mandate to push through even more drastic immigration dumbfuckery, Pearce introduce five extremely racist bills last session. They were so radical that 70 Arizona CEOs sent the Senator a letter asking him to quit acting like such a douchebag, because the cloud of bigotry he cast over the entire state was hurting tourism and business in general. In March the foundation of hate cracked completely when the GOP-dominated, veto-proof Senate rejected all of Pearce's immigration bills. Uh oh.
The worm had started to turn, but it appears Pearce didn't learn anything. He brought the same level of arrogance to the recall campaign. But when the media shined a light on his deceptive tactics, and voters saw the real Russell Pearce, they sent him packing.