The Republicans of the Arizona Senate have picked a new leader in the wake of Russell Pearce's ouster, and that man is Prescott resident, University of Arizona graduate, and rancher Steve Pierce, who beat out sweepstakes winner Andy Biggs by one vote:
Leadership positions typically go to veteran legislators.
But Pierce proved to be a quick learner and an effective whip.
He eyed the presidency last year, but lost to Pearce.
He was a reliable ally of the president and helped to secure votes on contentious bills.
But Pierce balked when Pearce pushed a series of anti-illegal immigration bills, including a proposal that supporters hoped would trigger a court battle over the issue of granting automatic citizenship to children of undocumented immigrants.
Frank Antenori moves into Pierce's old gig as Majority Whip, while Biggs remains Majority Leader.fr