The Arizona Supreme Court ruled with the Democrats Thursday, overturning Gov. Jan Brewer’s decision to remove Colleen Mathis as chairwoman of the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission.
In a statement, Brewer called the decision, “deeply regrettable.”
“I am disappointed, certainly,” she said. “More important, this misguided ruling bodes ill for the integrity of redistricting in this state.”
In a special session Nov. 1, the Arizona Senate voted 21-6 to remove Mathis from her post.
Mathis is the only Independent on the board, serving with two Democrats and two Republicans.
Brewer called for her removal, citing “gross misconduct.” However, the Nov. 17 Ariz. Supreme Court ruling voted to reinstate Mathis as chairwoman of the redistricting commission.
The court concluded that under Article 4, Part 2, Section 1(10) of the Arizona Constitution, Mathis does not demonstrate “substantial neglect of duty, gross misconduct in office, or inability to discharge the duties of office.”
By reinstating Mathis, Brewer said the Supreme Court has averted its eyes from the “commission’s misdeeds.”
“The clearest victim in this matter is a redistricting process that voters intended to be honest, impartial and transparent. In the coming days, I’ll be considering my options as to how best to proceed.”