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The Voter’s Speakeasy featuring unbiased reporting and insight into life at Vote Smart from our staff, interns, and volunteers.

Challenges in Arizona: the Special Election in CD-8

2012 February 14

By Darren McDivitt, Political Courage Test Director

Following the resignation of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Arizona was faced with a unique situation in holding elections to replace the former Congresswoman. First, the timing of the resignation creates a situation where a Special Election will be held this spring in Arizona's 8th Congressional District to serve the remainder of Rep. Giffords' term. With the Special Primary Election being scheduled for April 17 and the Special General Election scheduled for June 12, the winner of the general election will only hold the office for a short amount of time before the November 2012 elections occur.

In addition, Arizona's Congressional redistricting also creates some unique circumstances in regards to this special election. Arizona gained a new Congressional district based on the 2010 Census data, which necessitates changes to the previously existing districts in terms of district boundaries and numbers. Arizonans removed redistricting powers from the State Legislature in 2000 and placed the task in the hands of an independent commission. The 9 districts drawn up by the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission have now been sent to the US Justice Department for approval (because of past voter discrimination problems in the state). Should those 9 districts be approved, the winner of the CD-8 Special Election would be faced with the possibility & challenge of running for the renumbered 2nd district that covers most of the current 8th district's territory. The Independent Redistricting Commission has not operated without controversy though, and recent moves by the ...

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Got questions? Call us toll-free

2012 February 13

No matter your experience-level or political preference, our researchers are here to answer even your most basic questions on U.S. candidates, officials, issues, and voting.

A message from Richard Kimball, President

2012 January 31

It's time for every thinking American to saddle up and fight for that most precious component in our struggle to self govern, our right to know.

GOP field narrowing, but are candidates really gone?

2012 January 20

The South Carolina Republican Presidential Preference Primary is scheduled for Saturday, January, 21st and while in most of our minds there are only four candidates still vying for the GOP nomination, one look at the ballot will tell a slightly different story. 

Where it all began

2012 January 11

It was unclear what might be done to ensure that citizens had at least one independent source to easily acquire accurate information, but what we eventually decided upon remains the heart of Project Vote Smart today.

Oregon major party candidates lacking political courage

2012 January 09

We released the 2012 Political Courage Test results today for Oregon's special election showing neither major party congressional candidate running for the state's 1st Congressional District seat was willing to answer even the most basic issue-related questions addressed inside the Test.

Iowa has spoken

2012 January 05

As expected, the Iowa Caucus, the first nominating contest of the 2012 election season, proved to shake things up inside the GOP race.

Can a sweater do that?

2011 December 15

Give a gift membership to Vote Smart and help us keep our politicians honest – can a sweater do that?

Testing Oregon CD-1 candidates' political courage

2011 December 12

Special elections typically are a result of unusual circumstances, scandal, or tragedy, and the race for Oregon's 1st Congressional district is no exception. 

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