Russell Pearce, once of the champions of the Arizona anti-immigrant law, went down to defeat yesterday in his Republican State Senate primary…for the 2nd time!
He lost by nearly 12 points to businessman Bob Worsley. He also lost to Jerry Lewis in a historic recall election last February. This primary was supposed to be Pearce’s comeback bid.
Pearce crafted SB 1070 with “legal advisor” Kris Kobach. Most of the law has been found unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court in June and another key provision is still being challenged. While Pearce has been a hero to the anti-immigrant movement, his hard-core views have turned Arizona into ground zero for the immigration debate. Pearce’s policies have damaged the state’s reputation while foisting economic hardship on a state already reeling from recession.
Today, one of the key leaders in the movement to defeat Pearce, Randy Parraz, was quoted in the Arizona Republic as saying that Pearce had boasted he would “never lose a primary.” Parraz added:
“[Pearce] misjudged the fact that he was no longer a conservative Republican — he was an extreme Tea Party Republican. There’s no comeback for Russell Pearce — he’s done.”