PHOENIX - Voters in west Mesa will decide on Nov. 8 whether Senate President Russell Pearce gets to remain in office.
Gov. Jan Brewer formally called the election for that date after the Secretary of State's Office certified on Friday that foes of the Senate president had gathered enough signatures to force a recall.
At this point the only thing that could short-circuit the vote would be a successful challenge of the signature verifications by Pearce.
In a prepared statement, Pearce said his lawyers are still reviewing the process that county and state officials used to determine that there were at least the 7,756 valid signatures required to force him to defend his office. The final official tally actually came in far higher, at 10,365. Pearce has until Monday to challenge he petitions.
Pearce was elected to the state House in 2000, moving to the Senate after the 2008 election. His Republican colleagues chose him as Senate president after last year's election.
Would-be foes have until Sept. 9 to get at least 621 signatures on petitions to run against Pearce. Whoever gets the most votes on Nov. 8 will fill out the balance of the term, which runs through 2012.